Braving the Cold
The Case for Bundling Up and Embracing the Winter
Here we are, in the dead of winter. Depending on where you live, you're likely dealing with frigid temperatures, days on end where the sun never peeks out from behind the clouds, and wind chills that are well, unbearable. We get it-- not the most appealing conditions for enjoying the great outdoors. Yes, hibernation is tempting, but resist-- channel your inner Sheryl Crow, step outside, and soak up the sun.
Here's Why: The Benefits of Getting Outside
Researchers at the University of Michigan found that worms exposed to colder temperatures lived longer than their counterparts in warmer climates. If you think they are comparing you to slimy, slithery worms, they are-- is that a problem?! Scientists believe that the same is true of people-- the crisp winter air is actually good or us. How's that for looking on the bright side?
A Breath of Fresh Air
Take a break from the dry air your heater creates, and all the germs floating around your home and office, and breathe in natural air. Gone are the dangerous air quality levels of the hot summer months. This air is crisp, cool, and ready to breathe in.
An Energy Boost
The fresh air will wake you up and help you clear your mind. Getting your body moving flips a switch that will keep you moving and help you to have a more productive day.
Light It Up
Feel that sunlight. Your body cannot absorb Vitamin D through your glass windows. In fact, because the sun is farther away and not directly overhead during the winter, more time is needed in the sun to get your daily dose of D.
Tips for Getting Outside (And Actually Liking It!)
Be Strategic. Check the forecast and find the more appealing weather days and plan an outdoor activity. Even if it's cold, choose a sunny day (or hour, or 15 minutes) over a cloudy time-- the sun makes all the difference!
Bundle Up. Cover all surfaces of your body, including your head and hands. Wear layers. You will be more successful if you aren't thinking about how cold your toes are.
Keep It Simple. We're not suggesting you run a marathon here. Find a few minutes to venture into your own back yard. If you have kids, chase them around and let them burn off some pent-up energy. Go on a walk around the neighborhood.
Create Your Own Warmth. Get active and your body will make its own heat. Take a brisk walk or a run. Kick around the soccer ball, or shoot some hoops. You can even work outdoor time into your routine, walking to work if that is an option, or walking to take care of errands during your lunch break. Get off the bus a few stops early, and finish your commute on foot.
Embrace the Season. Take up a snow sport like skiing or snowboarding. See what your favorite summer hiking trail looks like covered in ice. Make it a family affair by including your children and pets. Appreciate the beauty of the winter months.
Our challenge to you: Resist the urge to hide under your covers until April (regardless of what that groundhog says!), bundle up, and get outside! Your body will thank you.