Alright, everyone. Admit it. At one Thanksgiving or another you’ve used that age-old excuse, “Turkey makes you tired,” to relax fat and happy all Thanksgiving break.

Well I’m about to tell you, the myth is just that: a myth. Your body is most likely tired from digesting the biggest meal of the year, and things like alcohol and the hustle and bustle of the holidays have probably added to your fatigue.

The best way to combat this newfound laziness and upcoming holiday weight gain (I prefer to call it my Winter coat) is to stick to your fitness routine. If you don’t have one, get one. There’s no point in waiting ’til January 1st to take care of yourself.

The real problem on Thanksgiving day, however, is not being tired: The real problem is portion control. Did you know that the average person can put back 4,500 calories at their Thanksgiving meal? That’s more than twice the calories your body needs in a whole day! Please, friends, don’t do this to yourself. Remember these guidelines for portion control when Aunt Lola is pushing a third helping of pecan pie on you:

1 cup of salad= baseball (100-150 kcals)
3 oz. serving of white turkey= deck of cards (130 kcals)
1/4 cup of gravy= golfball (50 kcals)
1/2 cup of potatoes= 1/2 of a tennis ball (145 kcals)
1/2 cup of stuffing= ice cream scoop size (180 kcals)
1 square of cornbread= bar of soap (175 kcals without butter)
1/4 cup cranberry sauce= golf ball (100 kcals)
Slice of pie= light bulb (pecan: 450 kcals; pumpkin: 320 kcals)

Keep in mind that for the average woman, a standard meal is around 500 kcals and 700 kcals for men. I know it kind of puts a damper on things (the truth hurts!) but that’s why we’re here! (And don’t forget to come to Burn The Bird the morning after Thanksgiving… your body will thank you!)
–Madison Rice

Portion control examples found at