10 Ways to Stay in Shape in Atlanta during the Holidays

Get some exercise to go with your mashed potatoes.
If you're looking to stay in shape this holiday season, you're not alone. (Piedmont Park Ugly Sweater Run)
Enjoy scenic spaces like Centennial Olympic Park. (James Duckworth, AtlantaPhotos.com)

Holiday season is just around the corner and that means chilly weather, football, and lots and lots of food. It’s not uncommon for a diet to be blown to bits in the face of glazed hams, sweet potato pies, stuffing, collard greens and gravy-soaked cornbread. (This is the South: We know how to do Southern country feasts.)

In spite of all of the above, if you’d like to still be able to fit into your clothes after the holiday season – ahem – without having to sew in new elastic waistbands, heed a few of these ideas to keep yourself active and burning calories.

  1. The best way to beat holiday pounds is to resist putting them on in the first place. Exercise moderation as you indulge; don’t let your eyes be bigger than your stomach.

  2. Take a few hikes through some of Atlanta’s many trails.

  3. Go vertical with indoor rock climbing.

  4. Two wheel it by enjoying Atlanta biking trails.

  5. Pop into a fitness center regularly, whether it’s the gym, yoga studio or outdoor fit camp. 

  6. Try an unusual sport, like roller derby or fencing. 

  7. Get a buddy, walk around your neighborhood and hold each other accountable. (Keep each other from ringing in the new year with holiday pounds of regret.) 

  8. Get involved in a fun winter sport like kickball. 

  9. Take the family on a walking tour, like the Atlanta BeltLine Arboretum Walking Tour. Or knock out some calories while on your feet at the Atlanta History Center or the King Center, and learn a little.

  10. And lastly, a perennial favorite: play a few games of flag football.

Beth Clark is a writer and foodie who loves to roam around Atlanta, uncovering the city's quirky, glam, upscale and down-home character. Curiosity is her compass, and you'll find her writing on www.thecitydweller.me.