5 Ways to Enjoy the Long Winter

I know for a lot of people wintertime is “dark and depressing”. In fact, my famous remark used to be, “it’s to cold outside to do anything fun”.

I hated winter and couldn’t wait for spring. That all changed when I met my now husband, Dan. He loves winter, loves to ski, hike, camp (not so much anymore) ice skate, and mountaineering. In fact he did most of the 46 mountain peaks (he’s a 46er) in the Adirondacks during the winter months.

So I was kind of forced (in a good way) to get outside and enjoy all the fun activities winter has to offer.

I remember one of my first times in the Adirondacks and Dan wanted to go for a hike in 25 degrees below 0 temperature. “What, are you nuts” I said. “No, all you have to do is dress warm” he said.

He bundled me up with so much clothing, I had a hard time moving fast, I felt weighed down with all that extra clothing but I have to say, I wasn’t cold and we had a fantastic hike.

As the saying goes “there is no bad weather just bad clothing”. So True! It’s all in how you dress which I’ll talk about below.

Here are 5 ways I’ve learned to enjoy winter and hopefully it inspires you to get out there!

Change your mindset

Instead of thinking about how cold it is, think about one fun thing you can do only in the winter. You could learn to ski or ice skate. It’s also a good time to get out and walk. Just think about how good it will feel after your walk. You’ll come home to a warm place and make yourself a piping hot cup of cocoa or tea. You’ll appreciate your warm place so much more and you’ll feel better too.

And if you don’t believe me about changing your mindset then read this interesting article on research done by Kari Leibowitz.

She spent August 2014 to June 2015 on a Fulbright scholarship in Tromsø, Norway. Tromsø is so far north that from late November to late January, the sun never climbs above the horizon. She went to study the residents’ overall mental health, because rates of seasonal depression were lower than here in the US. Why do you think that is? It’s an easy read and I think you’ll be surprised by what she found.

Warm Clothing

After you’ve changed your mindset, think about investing in warm clothing, and also think about a good pair of boots or shoes and warm socks. Do not wear cotton if you’re going out to play in the snow because when cotton gets wet it freezes, which means you’ll freeze too.

Instead invest in a good base layer (long underwear) made of a moisture wicking material such as a synthetic fabric, merino wool or silk. Moisture-wicking underwear dries much faster than cotton underwear and helps transport perspiration away from skin.

Watch this video “Why you shouldn’t wear jeans in the winter” – https://youtu.be/RjA5ttgBpjU

Winter Activities

What you can only do in the wintertime? Think sledding, skiing, ice skating, snowshoeing, hiking (state and national parks are less crowed in the wintertime).

Learn a new winter sport because any winter activity is exercise so don’t put your exercise routine on hold just because it’s cold outside, get outside anyways!

Brew Hot Beverages

Brew your favorite tea or cocoa and spice them with alcohol if you prefer like run to your tea or baileys and peppermint schnapps in your hot cocoa (my favorite) or break out the slow cooker and make yummy soups and stews.

Better still, take your hot beverage or soup with you on your next outdoor adventure and enjoy it at break time. We’ve done this and let me tell you, that soup or hot beverage will taste like the best thing you’ve ever had!

Enjoy the Scenery

Snow makes for beautiful photos and changes the landscape making for breathtaking sights, so grab your camera or smartphone and take some pictures! Even sunsets and sunrises are gorgeous in the wintertime.

Don’t look at winter as a doom and gloom, a time of the year meant to be observed from your window. Put on warm clothing and get outside. As stated from the research article I mentioned above, the people in northern Norway say, “Winter is something to be enjoyed, not something to be endured”. Don’t you agree?

Have fun outside this winter and let me know what you’re doing this winter – tweet me, leave a comment below or @ me on Instagram or post to my Facebook page, would love to see what you’re doing.

Tina

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