Festive gatherings, family traditions and all the preparations can make the holidays hectic. For some, the season can hold a lot of weight, especially if people are grieving a loss or feeling lonely.

Whatever the cause, this time of year can leave one feeling stressed or down when it’s supposed to be all about joy. Fresh air and exercise are often excellent antidotes for stress or sadness. It may be hard to prioritize these things when so many other things compete for time, but the mindful mile could be a new tradition that helps keep people sane during the holiday season.

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Outdoors writer Cristina Peterson is

an avid climber and trail runner.

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