Runners woke up bright and early this morning to get a little exercise in before their big Thanksgiving meal.

They participated in the 26th annual “Turkey Trot” at the Event Center downtown. Running fanatics said they look forward to this race every year.

“It’s a great time, something to do beside watch movies and stuff your face,” said runner Angie Bierbaum.

The runners could choose to run the 10k or 5k. Some people decided to run this race to start a new Thanksgiving tradition.

“I’m trying to be healthy so I decided to start a new tradition,” said runner Janet Cherry.

Kids even got to participate in a their own race like Viteep Mundodi.

“It was very hard but a guy on a bike was supporting me the whole time,” said Mundodi.

However, at the end of the day runners said it isn’t about who finished first it’s about spending time with friends and family.

“Being around all the people we’ve come to know as friends, almost family we’ve done this for about 6 years,” said runner Buddy Howlett.

Runners also said it felt good to burn off some calories before their big Thanksgiving dinner.

“Now I don’t have to worry about eating an extra slice of pie,” said Howeltt.

This year about 1600 people participated in the "Turkey Trot."