Black Friday can be a day of amazing steals and deals but sometimes the crush of the crowd and the precious minutes (okay, hours) spent in long lines can leave us questioning whether it was worth it. In fact, avoiding the traffic and hype of this massive shopping day could mean more family time, self-care, and less stress to keep you happy and healthy as the jolliest and (busiest) time of year begins. So, if you are thinking of skipping the malls on Black Friday, try these five alternatives to start your holiday season on the right foot.

Turkey trot as a family

Many families and neighborhoods spend the day after Thanksgiving running in their local turkey trot. It’s a great way to spend time with family and friends and you’ll feel rejuvenated for whatever the rest of your weekend holds. You may also consider organizing a neighborhood fun run if you want to trot close to home! This may even start a new tradition in your community for years to come and you’ll feel good knowing your health goals are being maintained in the midst of holiday reverie.

Get moving

After Thanksgiving’s feasting and merrymaking, take advantage of the long weekend and go for a hike to enjoy the last of the fall leaves or try one of these indoor workouts if it’s too cold to venture outdoors. Rethinking your exercise routine as it gets colder is an opportunity to try something new and keeps things interesting. You’ll feel refreshed and energized afterwards and all those feel-good endorphins released during exercise will make the season sweeter. Don’t forget to pack a snack or make a post-workout smoothie.

Cook something new

If you enjoy trying new recipes, consider spending Black Friday making something delicious with those you love. Quality time in the kitchen together gives you an opportunity to connect and make memories with fewer distractions. This is also a great time to get an older family member to teach you how to make one of their signature recipes or to pass a secret recipe on to the next generation.  

Schedule some self-care

Exhausted after a day of cooking, eating, and hosting family, friends, and neighbors? Book a massage, hair appointment, or enjoy a nap to recuperate. Do something you find relaxing instead of pushing yourself to run errands or check everything off of your shopping list. Staying in tune with yourself is especially essential during this time of year and can keep it from feeling like a hectic blur. Taking a little time for yourself will allow you to recharge and ensure you are generous of spirit this holiday season.

Read a book

Turn your phone off, find your toastiest socks, and snuggle into your couch or favorite chair with that book you’ve been wishing you had time to read. Don’t forget to brew a steamy mug of collagen peptides and chamomile tea, creamy vanilla hot cocoa, or this pumpkin spice protein latte for extra coziness and enjoy getting lost in whatever read you’ve been saving for a quiet moment like this!