Winter is Coming

The snow fell, and the snow stuck around. It may be gone for now, but we all know it will be back in full force. While this isn’t something new, every year we all hear (and probably say) things like “Wow, it’s snowing,” “Wow, the wind out there is really bad” or “Wow, really, this early?” With freezing temperatures and the desire to just stay inside all day (even when you know you can’t), here are some easy things to incorporate in your life in order to not only survive the winter season but maybe even enjoy it.

While winter is cold, a lot of the discomfort comes from the fact that people don’t wear the right clothing; that’s just a fact. Everyone talks about layering being key to keeping warm but it’s just as important to know how to layer properly.

Fuzzy socks are cute and cozy for wearing around the house but in reality, they don’t prove themselves practical for wearing outside. Wool socks, Costco sells a great pack, are the answer. They wick away sweat, keep body heat in and can be found in differing levels of thickness to make sure the right pair fits for the right shoe.

On the note of wicking away sweat, always remember “cotton kills.” While obviously this is an extreme and more so applies in instances of outdoor winter activities, if you’re going to be outside in the cold for an extended amount of time, do not wear cotton. Cotton will absorb and retain sweat (yes, you still sweat outside in the winter) and will actually make you colder because of the moisture on your body. Opt for a layer made of polyester, nylon or spandex.

Next, avoiding cotton, layer on something made of wool or fleece which will provide more warmth, and on top wear a jacket that is built to keep in heat and keep out the wind. While it’s obvious to wear a winter jacket, most are too thin and made of (go figure) cotton, so they’re not built to keep out the wind. A puffier jacket made out of a material built to keep cold air out will keep you the warmest.

Always keep hat and gloves with you. They don’t take up much space in pockets or a backpack and you will thank yourself every time you have to walk in the chilly weather that your hands and head are covered, too.

Now that you’ve dressed for success, find ways to enjoy winter! Sledding isn’t just for kids, and even just going for a walk can boost your spirits. Snowshoeing is super fun and great exercise without feeling like it and is as easy as slapping on snowshoes and strolling on the snow. You can go skiing (cross country if you’re like me and find downhill terrifying), snowboarding or tubing. And afterward, curling up in a blanket by the fire with a hot drink is one of the coziest and best parts of the season.

The reality is that winter is here, and it will be here next year and the year after. While winter can often induce feelings of sadness and even lead to seasonal depression, learning ways to find happiness in something that will always be back too soon and too chilly will make life so much more enjoyable.