How to Get Ready for Winter

After the blazing drought of this year’s summer, winter has come with a bit of a bump. Most years, there is time to feel the seasons slowly changing and mentally prepare yourself for the long cold months ahead. This year it seems that winter has caught many people by surprise. Unfortunately, it looks like it will be a particularly hard one for many. So, what can you do to prepare yourself and get ready for winter?


Stay Warm

It’s a pretty obvious statement but look at what you need to do to stay warm personally. Bring out those extra blankets and put them around the home where you or others might sit. If you work from home, have a blanket at your desk – it might feel foolish, but sitting still for hours on end reduces blood flow which makes you colder; a blanket will help. Dig out your slippers and replace them if they’ve gotten too full of holes. You should also look at the rest of your wardrobe – if you’re running low on jumpers and hoodies, then look to buy some more. If you are trying to live a more sustainable lifestyle, then check out UK-based companies like bEE bOSTIN’ who use ethically sourced materials in their products, including t-shirts, sweatshirts, and hoodies, or head into the charity shops – it is the right time of year to find jumpers that people have decided they do not want this winter.


Stay Healthy

Staying healthy for winter is slightly different from staying healthy in summer. Yes, the same old standbys apply – eat a balanced diet, stay hydrated, exercise. However, there are a few additional points for winter. Firstly, increase your vitamin D intake – in the UK, we do not get enough vitamin D purely from the sun in winter, so take a supplement or try to increase it in your diet. Increase the amount of fruit and veg you’re eating – this will give your immune system a helping hand. Your skin routine is likely to change – over winter, your skin tends to dry out a lot, so you may need to change the type of soap you use, facial moisturiser, or even shampoo to compensate for the drying effects of the weather, pollution, and central heating.


Beware of SAD

SAD, otherwise known as Seasonal Affective Disorder, can affect many people without them knowing. It can happen at any time of year, but for many, the symptoms are worst over winter. It is a type of depression and can leave a sufferer feeling lethargic, gaining weight, and with a feeling of worthlessness or guilt (amongst many other symptoms). You should always go to a GP if you feel different from your normal self – often, people avoid it as they think they’re making a big deal over nothing or think it’ll get better. It might; it might not – ask for help.

Many people find they feel low and lethargic over the winter months but may not have a full case of SAD. However, there are a few things you can do to help if you have such symptoms – invest in daylight bulbs and get outside in daylight as much as you can. Daylight can increase your serotonin levels and improve your circadian rhythm, helping to lessen SAD symptoms. Exercise can also help – if you have had to reduce your amount of exercise due to weather or the light changes, then try to find an activity to do indoors, such as yoga or a home fitness class.