E very Thanksgiving, it’s your mom’s sweet potato pie, Aunt Carol’s green bean casserole, Aunt Marie’s secret-ingredient stuffing (ground giblets — old school, disgusting to watch but delish to eat).

And every Thanksgiving, you spend a significant portion of your day fretting and whining about your girlish (athletic) figure.

Your running shoes are in your car, but how do you escape the fam to go for a run without insulting them?

You never come home. They just want to visit with their Petit Aubergine (weird nickname you picked up at age 3 — don’t ask). But between the sedentary lifestyle (for one day) and your brain’s constant caloric recalculations (no gravy! No, no pie!), you’re being a bad dinner guest.

You need a little Thanksgiving exercise for your sanity. So try one of these tips for running out without hurting feelings:

‘I want more’

A tablespoon of Grandma’s gravy has enough calories to get you through your next Ironman.

Tell Grandma that in order to eat firsts, seconds and thirds, you need to run. Otherwise, you’ll make one measly plate and call it good.

Grandmas can’t stand it if you don’t take seconds. Your run is preventing your grandma from crying.

You’re a hero.

Walk the dog

Before dinner, tell Aunt Carol that her dog could use a walk.

Grab your tennies out of your car and head out for a nice, long run with her Corgi, Chesapeake.

You’re 6 foot 6 inches. You ran four miles.

Corgis have tiny legs. Chesapeake ran 416 miles.

Give the pup some extra table food, Stretch.

Therapist approved

Only do this one if your family is as dysfunctional as you: When mom says, “you’re leaving for some stupid exercise?!?” yell back that your therapist says it’s OK to indulge your diagnosed neuroses today, including washing your hair with butter and your face with yams.

Scream: “You hate my face being this yammy color! It’s festive, but you’ve never supported me!”

Then say the turkey needs some fresh air and take it on the run with you.


Make something up. Anything. Like:

“My car is on fire! No, don’t help — if you see my mermaid magic, I’ll never be able to travel on land for the holidays again.”

“My butt is on fire! I’m running to the pharmacy. I might have to search for a long time, like, um, 7-minute miles times five…”

“My pants are on fire! What did you say about my nose?!? Liars!”

Sneak out

Sneak out, just like you did as a teenager, for your desperate flight for running independence.

Don’t forget your walk of shame back in after your run. You’ve earned it — your mom just wants to see your face, for the love of Pete, and you’re so exercise-obsessed that you can’t even hang out in the kitchen with her while she’s cooking.

Your seat’s under the table this year, next to Chesapeake.

If you go

What: CU @ Turley’s Turkey Trot

When: Race starts at 10 a.m. Thursday

Where: Potts Field, CU Research Park

Cost: $15 ahead, $20 day of

More info: Benefits Community Food Share.

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