Compared to previous years, winter appears to be coming in with a whisper but just because we haven’t had a snowpocalypse yet this season doesn’t mean that the icy cars, driveways, and sidewalks haven’t been an annoyance! Whether digging yourself out of a couple of inches of ice or a foot of snow, it can be hassle – especially in the morning!
Here’s some tips to make these icy mornings go a bit smoother:
- Instead of waking up to a morning coffee or cigarette, you should shovel snow or dig out of ice first. Caffeine and nicotine should be avoided before any strenuous exercise, including shoveling snow. It raises your heart rate and can make your blood vessels constrict. Keep both as a celebratory finish to your icy morning chore!
- Do a bit of a warm up inside before shoveling snow! Do some stretches and warm up your muscles. It is always best to warm up before starting a strenuous activity!
- Dress in layers that you can take off as you heat up.
- Keep your hands out of your pockets! It’s easier to slip and fall during icy weather. If your hands aren’t out of your pocket, you can’t use them to steady yourself or to protect your head if you do fall! Better to invest in a pair of gloves or mittens and keep your hands out of your pockets!
- Use a shovel that is meant for snow. It makes it easier to complete the task and is easier on your body. Look for one that makes it so you don’t have to bend over quite so much and don’t be afraid to try out a lighter plastic model.
- Push snow rather than lifting it. It saves you energy and helps prevent strain. If you must lift snow, don’t forget to use your knees!
- Pace yourself. You don’t have to do it all at once. Slow and steady. Make sure you take breaks as you need them.
- Think about when you shovel. If you can, think about shoveling soon after the snow falls when it is still light and fluffy or make frequent trips out to keep snow from accumulating. This will lighten the work you must do as you get ready to leave your house.
- If you choose to use one, thoroughly read the instructions, precautions, and uses of a de-icer before using one. Different de-icers can actually destroy sidewalks, driveways, and even house masonry! Best to keep it away from the house altogether!
- Kitty litter doesn’t melt snow or ice but it does help provide traction! You can put some down to help keep you from slipping or use it to get your car un-stuck.
We hope everyone stays safe and warm as we go through all of these different weather systems!