Today in our morning hike, we saw many signs of Mother Nature acclimating to the cold weather. The ground is starting to harden, the grass is embracing the blanket of frost and the water puddles are showcasing beautiful designs as they freeze. An hour later and 2 degrees warmer with the sun higher in the sky, the ground looks soft again and the frost becomes droplets of water.
During this time of year, I always have mixed feelings about whether I should cling on to every last moment of warmth or embrace the cold which is eviteable in Minnesota. After reading some articles about acclimating to the cold weather, it seems I should embrace the cold. Why? The best way to acclimate to the cold is to be exposed to it. So I guess I should pull out the long underwear, and be diligent about always bringing a hat/gloves and most importantly a scarf for those windy days that send chilly air down your neck and right to your belly.
Acclimating to the cold is different for everyone. The ability to handle the cold is less to do with physiological differences and more about how we perceive the temperatures. Someone can feel colder but their actual body core and extremity temperatures will likely be very similar to the person next to them who is quite comfortable. I guess this means I can't use the excuse of "I was born in the tropics" anymore!
In conclusion, I would recommend to get outside more now, while the weather temperatures are still relatively mild to help you prepare and give you the foundation needed to enjoy the outdoors better when winter weather truly hits us hard.