Cyber Monday is the new Black Friday—so spend your Friday off doing these things instead.

By Lauren Mazzo
November 22, 2017

All Photos: Giphy

Fighting through crowds of hungover, food-coma shoppers sounds fun, I know. But the internet is a magical thing, and you know you'll score better stuff on Cyber Monday anyway. Instead of wasting time digging through utterly destroyed store shelves and waiting in insane lines, spend your Black Friday doing some of these things (or, literally anything else) instead.

1. Make it a fitness friyay.

You could work up a sweat fighting other shoppers for the last discount toaster-or you could go sweat out yesterday's wine and cheese in an actually enjoyable atmosphere. Instead of schlepping through your usual strength and cardio, take advantage of the ~yay holidays~ vibe and try something new. A spin class, a new online workout video, or even just some new equipment in your gym. That happy buzz you'll get is just one of the health benefits of trying new things.


2. Follow your food binge with a Netflix binge.

You've been waiting ages to finally watch HBO's Insecure and Netflix's Friends from College and now you have an entire day off work and are stuck at your childhood home. What are you even waiting for?! Yes, Netflix, I am definitely still watching.

3. Have someone massage the tryptophan out of your body.

What holiday stress?? Decompress and #treatyoself to a massage. It's much better $$$ spent than on your 50th pair of leggings (that you really only bought because they're on sale and not even because you like them that much). Not only will it prepare your muscles for all your holiday hustle workouts, but it'll help stave off nasty winter colds and keep you from wanting to kill your super-conservative uncle who starts fights over the dinner table. (And those aren't the only mental and physical benefits of getting a massage.)


4. Do a marathon-of holiday movies.

You know that pre-holiday purgatory between Halloween and Thanksgiving where people get heated over whether or not it's too soon to blast Mariah Carey? It's officially over. Now you have license to play your fave holiday movies back to back to back and no one can say a thing. Festive spirit is about to go zero to 100.


5. For that matter, have a sex marathon.

Whether you had a first-trimester food baby yesterday or went into a full-on food coma, working out the day after such indulgence can feel impossible. Ease out of your sluggish trance by getting your workouts done right in bed. Bonus points if you use it as an intermission between Love Actually and Eight Crazy Nights. You can totally justify spending all day in bed with these health benefits of sex.

6. Run for the hills-literally.

If you love those "I want to be where the people aren't" Little Mermaid memes, then hiking is the Black Friday plan for you. Get far away from the crowds and consumerism and get back to your roots. Find a local hike and drag your family or friends along for some bonding. (We'll bet you can convince them with these health benefits of hiking.)


7. Have a self-care day (and, no, it's not selfish).

Thanksgiving is all about giving thanks and being grateful for what you have-so why not make Black Friday all about you? Prioritizing self-care is important year-round-but especially during the holiday crazy. Try one of these self-care ideas, or do all of them in 24 hours for the most epic self-care day ever.

8. Do something nice for other humans.

Pair your self-care to-dos with some charitable actions. After all, the holiday season is all about being the anti-Scrooge-and Black Friday shopping is kinda Scrooge-y to begin with. Pop over to a soup kitchen to serve up Thanksgiving leftovers, help out at an animal shelter (because hanging with puppies is always a good thing), ring a bell for the Salvation Army, or participate in an outdoor cleanup. You'll likely be on your feet for a while-which means great things for getting rid of that lingering Thanksgiving food baby. Try a site like VolunteerMatch to find something near you.


9. Finally read that book you got as a holiday gift last year.

Stop scrolling on Instagram for like five seconds, and pick up that book your mom got you for Christmas last year-or the year before. (Here, some must-read options.) Going analog can be a great reset-and who knows, you might learn something new! (Or consider these reasons and strategies for ditching your tech for an entire day.)

10. Meditate your way to the North Pole.

You know how everyone in the world says "try meditating!!!!!" but you find yourself day after day not doing it? Today's the perfect day to do it for real. It's cold outside, you're probably lacking motivation to do anything that requires too much effort, and your hometown probably doesn't have much going on. Cue up an app like Stop, Breathe & Think, Headspace, or Calm, and give it a try. You can even meditate on certain relevant topics like gratitude, relationships, or stress. (Not convinced? These benefits of meditation will do the trick.)


11. Clean out your closet (you know you have too much damn stuff anyway).

Raise your hand if you can't close your dresser drawers or if you run out of hangers when all your clothes are clean. SAME. So why on earth would you go shopping for more stuff? (Yeah, you might be buying gifts for other people, but you know you'd come home with at least one trinket for yourself.) Instead, clean out your crap. Try these tips for detoxing and decluttering your space, and watch as tackling the holiday season and your New Year's resolution feels that much less chaotic.


12. Be a NAP KWEEN.

Remember when you were in college and could take five naps a day between classes and still thought school was hard? Now that #adulting takes up all your time, use your day off to indulge in this simple but oh-so-satisfying practice. (Plus, power naps can actually be epic for your mood and motivation.)


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