Running with the Turkeys

By Maria King
11/1/2013 11:18:45 AM

I know what you are thinking, "has she finally flipped her lid?" What is "Running with the Turkeys"? Well it isn't' exactly like the running of the bulls, and you don't really run with turkeys, but you do run on Turkey Day. Now I don't know about you, but when I think of Thanksgiving, exercise or going to the dentist are the 2 furthest things from my mind. In today's fitness craze however, Turkey Day runs are becoming as much a staple of Thanksgiving as cranberry sauce. I guess in anticipation of eating a lot, people try to build up sort of a calorie intake cushion. The fact that I don't do it I guess speaks volumes about me and what is important to me on my Thanksgiving.

Don't get me wrong, I think it's great that people are trying to look at fitness as a new holiday tradition. The events are taking note as well. In an effort to include the whole family, many events have added walks along with the runs. That means that family memebers of any age can participate. I happen to think that this is a nice family activity and I would definitely participate if I wasn't busy cooking. (No it is not an excuse, it is kind of a fall back position) It is important to me that my guests enjoy their day however they choose. Let's hope that by the time dinner rolls around we have more gobble, gobble and less hobble, hobble!

Seriously though, I do think this is great addition holiday traditions. When I was young, our family tradition was to attend a football game to watch my brother's team play.

Years later I realized it wasn't so much a tradition of football as it was my mother's subtle way of emptying the house of all of us "snackers." But no matter what the reason families engage in traditions, Turkey Day runs are here to stay along side other Thanksgiving traditions like football and parades. I for one applaud the "healthy choice" of a new generation. My wish is that all of you have the pleasure of celebrating in anyway that makes you happy.

It is my sincerest wish that, whether you chose to run or watch or eat, or some combination of all 3, that you and your family have a very wonderful and Happy Thanksgiving.

Credit: EventCrazy

Daytona Turkey Run

Nov 28, 2013 - Dec 01, 2013

Daytona International Speedway Daytona Beach, FL 32114

Since 1975, this event has more than 300 exhibitors and is the biggest car shows and swap meets in the entire Southeastern part of the U.S. An enormous collector vehicle show open to muscle cars and other special rods where over 5,000 cars are registered to attend. There will be over 3,000 occupied vendor spaces filled. An incredible number of street rods, customs, and classics will be participating.

65,000 Attendees

The Atlanta Marathon and Atlanta Half-Marathon

Nov 28, 2013

Turner Field Atlanta, GA 30315

The oldest marathon in the Southeast and one of the ten oldest in the country, The Weather Channel Atlanta Marathon on Thanksgiving Day is also the only U.S. marathon run on an Olympic course-approximately 90% of the course is the same as that run by the world's best at the Atlanta Games in 1996. Runners pass under the Olympic Rings on their way to the finish line, an exhilarating end to a challenging event. The accompanying half marathon is among the largest in the U.S., and while slightly less demanding is still guaranteed to work up runners' appetites. Together, the two races have become a holiday tradition for thousands of runners and hundreds of friendly and dedicated volunteers. Registration fee to participate in race.

7,000+ Attendees

The OLY Trot

Nov 28, 2013

Downtown Olympia, WA 98503

Join us for Olympia's Thanksgiving Day tradition! A fun, family friendly event in downtown Olympia! 4-miles around scenic Capital Lake and through the Capital Campus. A great way to start your holiday season! All runners will receive custom arm-warmers (PERFECT for winter training)! Prize money will be awarded to the top three male and female finishers (holiday shopping in downtown Olympia, here you come!) and 1st place age group winners will receive awards.

Old National Turkey Day 5K Runaway

Nov 28, 2013

Downtown Evansville Evansville, IN 47711

Since 1990, Runners and Goodwill supporters come together on Thanksgiving to race and raise funds for the Goodwill Family Center on this fast, flat 5K course in Downtown Evansville.

Gobble Gait

Nov 28, 2013

RJ's Tavern Hastings, MN 55033

Since 1997. Years later, we are still raising money to benefit Hastings Family Service, but it is no longer a small race! Our 2k and 8k combined are now averaging well over 2,000 runners each year, and have consistently been one of the Twin Cities' largest Thanksgiving Day runs! Many families have made it their traditional way to kick off the holiday season! Our race registration fees, paired with the hard work of race volunteers and the generosity of over 150 sponsors from around the community, have enabled Gobble Gait to raise over half a million dollars for Hastings Family Service! Not to mention the tons of food that our race day food drive has brought in! Wow! These funds are used by Hastings Family Service to provide assistance to families in need of basic necessities like food, transportation and clothing. ? On a day we celebrate our blessings.... it's such a great, fun way to give back! We hope you make Gobble Gait a part of your Thanksgiving tradition!

15,000+ Attendees

Turkey Trot - 5K / 10K Run

Nov 28, 2013

Dana Point Harbor Dana Point, CA 92629

Since 1987, Thanksgiving Day run in stunning Dana Point. Admission fee to run/walk.

10,000 Attendees

Turkey Trot

Nov 28, 2013

Downtown Detroit, MI 48211

Since 1982. The Turkey Trot, will take starting at 7:30 am. The tradition before the tradition is Michigan's largest 10K run and will include the 5K Stuffing Strut and Mashed Potato Mile. Nearly 6,000 participants run the challenging city course, many in holiday costume through downtown Detroit. Fee to participate in race.

YMCA Turkey Trot

Nov 28, 2013

Buffalo Convention Center Buffalo, NY 14202

Since 1895, The oldest foot race in North America, festivities include a lively post-race party. The YMCA Turkey Trot is an 8k (4.97 mile) footrace which begins at Delaware Avenue and Shoreham. The race follows Delaware Avenue into downtown Buffalo. The route proceeds around Niagara Square to Church Street and then onto Franklin Street where runners will cross the finish line in front of the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center. Entry fees will help provide scholarship assistance to needy families who participate in YMCA programs and membership services such as child care and other youth development programs at the Delaware Family YMCA.

Gobble Cobble Turkey Trot

Nov 28, 2013

Maryland Athletic Center (Harbor East) Baltimore, MD 21202

Since 2010. Gobble, gobble! In coordination with the Falls Road Running Store, the Maryland Athletic Club (MAC) in Harbor East is proud to announce downtown Baltimore's Thanksgiving marathon, the Gobble Cobble Turkey Trot. The Gobble Cobble Turkey Trot is a 7K course starting at the MAC in Harbor East, continuing through Fells Point and returning to the promenade downtown. Registration fee

YMCA Turkey Dash

Nov 28, 2013

Katy Family YMCA Katy, TX 77494

Since 2003, Join us for Katy's largest Fun Run on Thanksgiving Morning! 5K, 1 Mile Kids Race, 1 Mile Family Walk/Run. Awards, Door Prizes, Post Race party with complimentary refreshments, Kids Fun Zone, Live Band and MORE! Race starts and ends at the Katy Y. Make the Turkey Dash part of your Thanksgiving Day tradition. Register online. No online processing fees!

5,800 Attendees

Turkey Trot

Nov 28, 2013

Downtown Bath Bath, ME 04530

Since 2005. InspireME Personal Fitness Training will be hosting the Turkey Trot. The trot consists of a 3-mile course through Bath, which individuals can run or walk. Registration will take place the morning of the event at 30 Front Street. To register runners are required to make a cash or check donation and/or non-perishable food contribution to the Bath Food Bank. To start the trot on time we ask trotters to show up between 7am-8:15am for registration. This is a great way to burn off some of those extra calories and support a group of people who struggle for their next meal. The money raised will help the Bath Soup Kitchen buy fresh greens, vegetables, and fruit for their guests, which we all need more of. Everyone is encouraged to come walk or run and don't forget to bring your families...the trot is a good way to promote a healthy family activity for the holiday.

Baltimore City Y Turkey Trot Charity 5K

Nov 28, 2013

Druid Hill Park Baltimore, MD 21217

Every year, thousands of individuals from local communities come together to join the Y of Central Maryland for the annual Y Turkey Trot Charity 5K, a Thanksgiving Day tradition that raises critically-needed funds to support kids whose families live in poverty throughout Central Maryland. The Y will host its Turkey Trot Charity 5K in Baltimore City, Bel Air, Ellicott City/Catonsville, Towson and Westminster. Each Y Turkey Trot will feature a 5K Run/Walk, and prizes will be awarded in each age group. Proceeds benefit children whose families can't afford educational and enrichment opportunities that many kids take for granted, such as Y Journeys Preschool and Camp. Don't miss out on the chance to get some exercise before the big feast, and join others to put more "thanks" and "giving" into Thanksgiving by supporting struggling families in our community.

Maria can be reached directly at or @eventcrazy on Twitter or visit her website at

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