Powering Up for Black Friday!

11.21.2012 / Blog Posts Health and Wellness

Jane Jakubczak MPH, RD, CSSD, LDN; Washington Redskins Team Dietitian 

This week we celebrate the super bowl of all shopping days “Black Friday”! Learn more about the history of Black Friday here.

As I began to think about the nutrition strategies I’d offer WOW members for this event, I realized the strategies were the very same ones I encouraged the Redskins Players to follow this week in preparation to beat the Dallas Cowboys.  Our players prepare to maximize their strength, endurance and focus through proper nutrition; we can do the same to get us through our bargain hunting marathon. 

Follow these tactics to shop like a pro-athlete: 

Secure a good night sleep.  This is usually not a problem on Thanksgiving night, with the “turkey coma” looming since dinner.  Nothing will shore up your will power against the Food Court Cinnabon more than being well rested.  We get energy from two sources; food and rest.  If we haven’t acquired enough rest our bodies will yearn for food, especially fat and sugar. Click here for more info on sleep deprivation!

Eat breakfast:  The Pre-Game Meal. This is the high octane fuel that will power you through the mall and provide you with the stamina, strength and focus needed to get you through the shopping frenzy.  This meal should include a good source of protein, carbohydrate and healthy fats. Click here for a breakfast recipe from

Pack snacks: Half-time re-fueling.  This is essential to keeping your energy level up and your temptation to grab a pretzel dripping with butter and sugar down.  You want the snacks to be light in weight (shopping bags will be heavy enough with your treasures), non-perishable, non-messy (not a time to grab a juicy orange!) and easy to eat on the go.  A perfect snack to meet this bill is trail mix, originally developed by hikers (think of your shopping spree as a day-long hike). Check out these Trail Mix Recipes from

Stay hydrated.  Bring a water bottle and fill it at the water fountain.  This will not only save you calories (by reducing the temptation to grab a high calorie smoothie) but will save you time (think long lines) as well as money! To learn about the health of our drinking water, click here.

Planning these strategies into your “Black Friday” fun will not only improve your shopping performance but will leave you with left-over energy to enjoy the rest of your holidays. 

I wish you and your family a Happy and Healthy Thanksgiving!


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