Contributed by: Upper Chesapeake Bay and Potomac River
Winter can seem like a long season. With gray days on end, it can become a grueling few months. On top of that, the cold keeps you trapped inside, longing for the outdoors and warm, sunny days. But there are ways to overcome the winter blues, even if it requires a little imagination. Here are our tips for weathering the winter.
- Bright Light Therapy
In the winter, less bright light makes its way through the increased cloud cover, causing our bodies to believe it’s night more often. You may notice the effects of this with increased sleepiness or for many people – depression. Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, is depression that people experience during the winter months in part due to the lack of light. Light therapy can help some with seasonal depression and out-of-whack sleep patterns and moodiness. Bright light therapy is usually administered with a light box and works by stimulating cells in the retina that are connected to the part of your brain that helps control circadian rhythms – the thing that lets your body know when it should be asleep or awake. Bright light therapy boxes can be found online at a range of prices, but you should talk to your doctor before purchasing one to ensure your eyes, skin and psychological health are in order.
- Start Planning for Summer
An easy way to get over the winter blues is to ignore them – at least for a little while. You can do this by starting your plans for the summer months. Start researching your next vacation spot, planning your garden or looking for a boat to get outside and enjoy the water on. If you’re considering buying a boat, look at Carefree Boat Club. A boat club allows you to enjoy a fleet of boats all over the country without the hassle of maintenance, insurance, cleaning, and liability. Take some time to research the marinas that Carefree Boat Club has near you, dive into the details of their fleet then sign up so you can start planning your outdoor spring and summer adventures.
- Exercise Indoors
One of the main reasons the winter can leave us feeling so down and depressed is because it’s hard to get in the physical activity that we normally get during warmer months when we’re spending more time outside. But there are plenty of ways to get in physical activity inside. Consider purchasing a treadmill if you like to walk. Some new treadmills even have interactive courses where you can walk at famous locations all over the world. Or buy some yoga DVDs and practice some warming vinyasa yoga. Aerobic and cardio workouts are also available for free all over YouTube and will be sure to get you warmed up and out of winter mode.
- Take a Mini Vacation
Sometimes the only way to escape the winter is to actually escape. But this doesn’t mean you have to take a week-long Caribbean getaway. A weekend trip to southern Florida is just as warm as the Bahamas during the winter. And if you’re a Carefree Boat Club member, there are plenty of club locations all across the state of Florida that are included in your membership so you can enjoy some time out on the water as well.
Don’t let the winter get you down – weather the rest of these cold days with our tips and before you know it – you’ll be back outdoors, enjoying the sun and surf!