The Everyman: Running Ideas for the Holidays

Before you stuff your face with Christmas cookies, try one of these ideas.

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Before you stuff your face with Christmas cookies, try one of these ideas.

With a few exceptions, the fall marathon season has given way to the winter eating season, better known as the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas. But before you fill up on holiday cookies and rip open Christmas gifts, there are a few things you can do.

Start a Streak

Run every day in December and culminate the streak on Christmas Day. You might have some winter weather to deal with, but that’s the fun of it. Well, maybe it’s not. But you’ll be rewarded with an immense feeling of accomplishment on Dec. 25. Even better, your might even decide to extend the streak into the new year.

Run a Race

Find a race that has “Jingle” in its name. And don’t forget to wear your Santa hat or shoe covers that look like elf slippers. And many of these races benefit families that need help during the holidays, so bring a gift, some non-perishable food or even your checkbook.

Make a Wish List

Write up a wish list and leave it on the kitchen counter for your spouse to see, or “accidentally” send it to your family and friends via a group text or e-mail. They’ll get the message, and maybe you’ll get what you want.

RELATED: 2014 Holiday Gift Guide

Don’t Graze

If you attend a holiday party with family, friends or co-workers, don’t position yourself at the table full of hors d’oeuvres. And don’t keep walking over to the table to fill up your plate or refill your glass with eggnog. Do yourself and your body a favor by taking it easy. Fill a small plate, grab a drink and mingle. When dinner is served, try to fill up half of your plate with vegetables.

Travel Tip

If you’re traveling to see family, pack several pairs of running shoes and be prepared to pay for an extra baggage fee. You never know what type of weather you’ll face (unless you’re in San Diego)—plus you can impress your family with your running shoe arsenal. Or maybe they won’t care. But at lest you’ll be covered.

Got another holiday idea for runners? Tweet me @jason_devaney1.