‘Tis the season of the holiday hustle and bustle. Many of us are already starting to stress over the holidays – from airport schedules, to how to cook the perfect meal and even planning for Black Friday shopping deals. But maybe it is time to take a step back from everything.
Last year the company REI (Recreational Equipment, Inc.) did something unprecedented – they gave all their employees a paid day off on Black Friday, the busiest shopping day of the year. They urged consumers to go enjoy themselves outside, and they gave suggestions on trails and activities in every state. The movement was mentioned 84,763 times during the week of Black Friday in 2015. This year, REI, along and other companies, will be closing their doors on Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday.
You may be thinking, so why should I opt to be outside when these are the best deals of the season? Consider the following.
1. Many Black Friday deals are no longer just on the Friday after Thanksgiving. Check your local ads and stores to see what and when the sales are. Many stores will have deals happening throughout the month of November and December.
2. Spend time with your family. Thanksgiving is a time to express gratitude. Why not show it by participating in a family activity outside? Go on a hike or play at a local park. These are the activities that can make lasting memories for your family.
3. You just spent Thanksgiving Day eating. Most families spend the morning cooking, then graze on the food all day. Being physically active the next day will not only make you feel better, but it will help create good habits before your New Year’s resolutions.
4. We live in the beautiful state of Utah. Sometimes we forget to really admire the resources we have available in our state. Utah has 45 state parks and five national parks, all offering diverse recreational opportunities. If you do not want to drive to a state or national park, check out recreational opportunities in your county. Visit your local county website to see what is available in your area.
Will you be part of the 390,491 people opting outside this year?
By: Jaqueline Neid-Avila, Utah State University Extension nutrition faculty
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