1. Pack it on! It’s easier to take clothes off – instead of on when you’re between Harden and Mac Hall with an Arctic Blast in your face. When in doubt, layer up! You’ll thank yourself when having to walk – even short distances – in the bitter cold. Don’t forget your scarf; it makes a world of difference on your neck and face. Only one layer of socks though; more than one pair can constrict the foot and cause a lack of circulation – which is exactly what you don’t want in winter.
2. Extremities are important. While it is obvious to make sure your hands and feet are covered, there are some mistakes. Mittens are more effective than gloves; having your fingers together produces more insulating heat.
3. Warm (drinks/food) “You Didn’t Even Know It.” Cold winter means drink the warm stuff. For starters, bring a thermal with you on the way to class. In addition to a good morning buzz, caffeine also helps warm you up inside, but you’ll also have something warm in your hands. What else is good on a frigid night? Soup! Did you know eating whole grains in soup provide your body carbohydrates to burn, which helps keep you warmer. It’s useful – especially before bed – for a good night’s rest!
4. Alcohol is a No-No? Sipping an alcoholic drink may provide a sense of warmth, but it does the opposite. Alcoholic beverages decrease your core temperature, and according to a study by Army Research Institute of Environmental Medicine, alcohol reverses some reflexes that control body temperature – especially the body’s ability to shiver. Next time you think about adding that little extra to your morning drink, know that it may not have the effect you desire. A good substitute is water; water is actually amazing for retaining body heat. The more you have in your system, the easier it is to keep warm. Stay hydrated.
5. COLD shower? Nothing is better in the morning (or night) than a hot shower. Cold showers, however, improve blood circulation between your skin and organs. This improved blood circulation will help keep you warm. Also, when you get out of a hot shower your temperature drops rapidly. Hot showers immediately warm you up, but cold showers improve blood circulation and also correlate with a stronger immune system.
6. Hats off to you! You might have heard the saying, “you lose 80% of your body heat through your head?” It’s a myth. You lose heat through any exposed surface. Don’t go out thinking that as long as you wear a hat you’ll be warm.
7. Car Essentials: Head EAST. Even if you’re not a hopeless romantic, there’s another reason to love The East beside the sunrise. If you can, park your car facing East; it will/may defrost your windshield during sunrise. Doesn’t sound jaw-dropping in the middle of winter, but every little bit counts. Always plan for the worst-case scenario as things get slippery with snow and ice-covered roads. Make a survival kit for your car: A first aid kit, bottled water, extra clothes and jumper cables are essential.
8. DIY Hand Warmers. Need to keep your hands warm but don’t have money to continuously buy hand warmers? Make your own from scratch: Just two Ziploc bags, some water and calcium chloride ice melting pellets. Shake it all up and never worry about cold hands on your way to class ever again. Properly place them in the Waste Bin after use.
9. Sheep aren’t Cold, right? Fleece-lined leggings are key to a Wisconsin winter. Although UW-Green Bay students have the biggest perk with underground tunnels, the walk from the parking lot can be brutal.
10. Flakey? Noticed how your skin tends to turn white and feels a little itchier in winter? Moisturizers are important around here. They cost under $10.00 and last for months. Walgreens on University Avenue can help.
11. Location, Location, Location. Focus on communication. When traveling in the winter, it’s smart to share your location with your roommate, parent or anyone close to you in case your car breaks down. A major perk of having an iPhone is being able to enable the location feature indefinitely with other iPhone users. Next time you’re traveling, remember to let someone know where you’re off to so we don’t worry about you.
The 4Digits include Sara Darr, Cal DeRosier, Alex Koprowski and Devin Willems.
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