RUNNING

Turkey Trots around the US: How can I sign up? Where are the biggest races?

Thanksgiving has long been known as a day for feasting, but for some people, this holiday is also a time for burning calories, not just consuming them.

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Turkey Trots around the US: How can I sign up? Where are the biggest races?

Thanksgiving Day is synonymous with family feasts that often end with stuffed bellies, but there is another kind of celebration that many have been starting this day with- the Turkey Trot.

The Turkey Trot is a fun race to start Thanksgiving- it can be a way to burn some calories before starting on those gigantic meals with the family. Since 2015, Thanksgiving has been the most popular day to run a race in the US. On this day, the course usually takes participants through scenic spots in the community

Run for a cause

The race commonly takes place on Thanksgiving morning, and this year, that falls on Thursday, Nov. 25. Some offer free registration, but since a lot of these contests are local events to raise funds for projects in their area, you are sometimes asked to pay to sign up.

The competition has been increasing in popularity since it began in 1896 with the Buffalo Turkey Trot, and more than a million people have been signing up in recent years to join a race that  ranges between between 3.1 and eight miles.

They can also be as short as a kilometer, so that even small children can participate. Depending on your level of fitness and competition, the race can be an easy fun walk/run or a long/fast one. To add a little more fun to the run, some people dress up in turkey costumes or wear a turkey accessory.

How to join a Turkey Trot

This year, there are live events that people can join all over the United States. You can sign up on active.com which features more than 250 registered Turkey Trots all over the country, so you can find one that is closest to you.

If you prefer not to join the race in person, you can sign up through America’s Turkey Trot, which features virtual runs.

A popular race

Some of the biggest races include the Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot which has seen a turnout of more than 40,000 runners. The race benefits the Dallas YMCA Community health programs.

More than 27,000 people join the Run to Feed the Hungry in Sacramento, California every year, while the Silicon Valley Turkey Trot usually sees a turnout of over 25,000 runners.

The Buffalo Race has grown and is now capped at 14,000 participants, becoming the fourth largest Turkey Trot in the country.

Aside from contributing to a worthy cause, you get a little something if you are able to cross the finish line. For your efforts, you may receive a medal or a turkey-themed prize such as a T-shirt or even an actual turkey.