Preparing for Cold Weather

We’re at that time of year when temperatures in the District start dropping a bit. It can be 70°F (21°C) one day and 40°F (4°C) the next. With this fickle weather, many people begin to opt for indoor activities instead of outdoor ones. But there may be times when COVID case numbers are high and you just might want to be outdoors to minimize your risk of getting sick.

A wise Scandinavian once said…

If you come from a warmer climate this may sound impossible. Over the years I have noticed that the temperature difference is much easier on those who have a gradual adjustment. It allows your body time to adapt to the lower temperatures.  So, that’s the great news for all of you who are already here! Your body is already getting adjusted, so give your mind a chance to stay open to enjoying the outdoors too.

The next thing to do is get yourself the proper clothing and accessories. Start shopping for cold weather clothing: sweater, coat, gloves, hat, scarf, long underwear & boots. Ask your host family if they have some you can use and then start looking out for sales and checking thrift shops for the rest. Take a look at what you already have and think of ways to layer it. A long sleeve t-shirt under a sweatshirt may be as warm as a jacket. A pair of leggings or tights under a pair of jeans adds a lot of warmth.

It may also help to remind yourself that people in other parts of the U.S. and other countries experience much colder temperatures than we do here and still embrace the outdoors.

Pick your activities carefully. If you are sitting next to a fire pit or doing physical activity you will feel warmer. When you take the kids to the playground or out in the snow, don’t just sit on the bench and watch. You will feel warmer and have more fun if you are actively involved and enjoying a brisk day outside.

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