Michigander's are used to the fact that the temperature doesn’t normally stay consistent. There are days where the temperature with wind chill is -15 degrees and the next is 50 and sunny. Lately it has been particularly cold, and it doesn't seem to be going anywhere. Here are some tips to keeping yourself warm this bone chilling winter.
1. Wear Layers. Wearing a few extra layers is a great way to stay warm, especially if you have to go outside. It is especially important that you keep your core temperature up, so try wearing an extra shirt under your clothes and even a pair of leggings under some jeans. Are worried about looking like Randy from A Christmas Story? Don’t fret there are many sporting goods stores and companies that make cold-weather gear that is slim enough to be worn under any kind of clothing. For ladies who love to wear leggings, try swapping them out for long underwear. There are several companies that make long underwear that have the same look as leggings and will also keep you warm. A bonus: Most long underwear is meant to dry quickly and keep moisture off of you, so any leftover snow or slush won’t leave your legs damp and cold.
2. Two Words: Fuzzy Socks. Hypothermia is most likely to begin in extremities like your hands and feet, so keeping your toes warm and dry is important. The importance of wearing the right sock in winter weather cannot be understated. Wearing the latest, greatest and most expensive winter boot will do little to combat cold feet if you are not wearing proper socks. Fuzzy socks are made out of synthetic materials that are thicker than normal socks and use natural body heat to wick away any moisture that may be there.
3. Always Wear Hats, Scarves, and Mittens When Going Outside. It is said that we lose a good percentage of our body heat through our extremities, so covering up when preparing to go outside will benefit you. Covering your head will help prevent body heat from leaving your body. Wearing a scarf will help protect your face from any wind or snow and from getting through your heavy duty winter coat. You can also use your scarf as a way to keep warm in drafty classrooms. As for mittens, they don’t need to be heavy duty skiing gloves. They simply have to cover your hands, and keep your fingers warm and the blood in them circulating.
4. Eat Warm and Filling Food. When the weather is cold, eating or drinking something hot increases the sensation of being warm. Baked noodle casseroles, potpies, freshly baked breads, hearty stews, soups and roasts tend to be particularly satisfying. An added benefit of a home-cooked hot meal is that the kitchen, and often the entire house, becomes warmer. This makes the home feel more welcoming when the air outside is frigid. If you do not have time to spend preparing a meal, plenty of recipes for roasts, soups and stews use a slow cooker, reducing hands-on work to about 10 minutes. For a different take on hot foods, making your meals spicy can make you feel warmer as well.
5. Drink Warm Beverages. In the chilly weather, the last thing on your mind is likely a glass of cold water or iced tea. However, you become dehydrated just as easily in cold temperatures as you do in warm weather. To combat winter dehydration, a cup of warm tea is an excellent choice. Drinking tea counts toward a healthy daily intake of eight glasses of water. Hot cider is another comforting, hydrating choice during cold temperatures. A cup or two of coffee is fine to drink. Hot chocolate also makes for a fun, warm and toasty drink to either snuggle up on the couch with or to bring to class.
6. Invest in a Heated Blanket. Dorm rooms are notoriously cold, especially during the winter months. Stop hovering over your heater and start investing in items that will keep your body temperature high during those chilly evenings. Drape your favorite heated blanket over your comforter for optimal comfort and warmth, and you will be forgetting all about those frigid outdoor conditions.