It was an absolutely stunning day. Crystalline air, blue sky. Not a single cloud. As I walked on the deserted, snowy streets, my feet made sounds like Styrofoam squeaking. Step-squeak. Step-squeak. It was minus 32 degrees Celsius and I was out for a walk.
Well, okay. I hadn’t intended to be out walking in this weather but my car wouldn’t start and I had important people to see and lots of things to do. The upside? I got to experience how awesome it is to get out and breathe in that fresh sting of super-cold air.
Since moving from Prince George to Victoria, I have had my share of walking in the rain – sometimes pouring – and I’ve come to the conclusion that I love walking in inclement weather for a number of reasons:
- I have the trail and often the streets all to myself. Turns out, not a lot of people like to be outside when it’s freezing or pouring.
- It’s so quiet. Fewer people, less noise. I can really hear my thoughts.
- There is something meditative about the steady drips of rain on my hat and jacket, or the rhythmic squeaking crunch of my feet on the snow.
- My body is invigorated. The sting of cold on my shins and quads and the splashes of rain on my cheeks and eyelashes tell me I’m alive! Shoes dry out. Fingers thaw.
Now, some tips to get you outside when it’s miserable:
- Prepare for it. Have a rain jacket, snow jacket, toque, hat, hoodie, mitts, scarves, shoes, and boots at the ready by the door. Don’t worry. You’ll warm up. In the walk I mentioned at the beginning, I didn’t have an appropriate scarf and I ended up getting frostbite on my nose. That part sucked. The rest was fantastic.
- Instead of focusing on how hard it is to get out the door, think of what you will feel like when you get home. Let the thought of the rush of blood that will flood in once you’re back inside a warm space revitalize you.
- Think about the reason you’re doing it and why that’s important to you. You may have better success if you do this before you stare out the window, your inner dialogue telling you it will be so much more comfortable to stay inside. If you’re like me, that pull to stay inside is far more compelling that convincing yourself why you should go if you’re trying to do it in the moment. Try my five whys technique a day before for a fast and easy way to find your motivation.
And when you get out there, you too can experience how exhilarating it can be to be out in nature in her full freezing or raining glory.
Love to walk in the rain, snow or cold? Share this post to help others get out there too and experience how awesome it is!