Staying Safe During Winter Weather Emergencies

 Winter weather can sometimes be the most unpredictable. To help mitigate unexpected emergencies, you can prepare by having a plan in place before the storm arrives. Here are some tips to help you manage weather-related emergencies.

Dress in layers. 

 You don’t want to be caught off guard in the cold if you suddenly lose heat in your home. Before the storm arrives, gather coats, blankets, and sleeping bags. Wear thermal underwear, or whatever you have on hand that is similar, under your sweater and pants. Dress in as many layers as you can tolerate without causing too much constriction.

Have Candles Ready to Go

 Candles can become a nightmare when you are cold and trying to set them up in the dark. Have them ready in the places that they are going to be needed. Know where your matches or lighters are. Place the candles in heavy containers to not risk being toppled over; however, if possible, try to keep flashlights on hand in case. 

Insulate and Seal

Cold wind can enter your house through gaps and crevices. Just a small amount of outside air can significantly cool down the inside. Take precautions by insulating the bottom of doors and any gaps in windows with caulking and weather strips. If you do not have any on hand, you can place rolled-up towels under doors or force plastic bags through tiny crevices. Closing the blinds and curtains will also help to retain indoor heat.

Stock Up in Supplies

 Try to have at least two weeks of supplies on hand. There is a possibility it could take the city or town weeks to get utilities back to normal again. For example, each person needs about a gallon of drinking water a day. So if there are three people in the household, you would need 42 gallons of water to last two weeks. You should stock up on non-perishable foods as well. Vehicles should have a full tank of gas due to gas stations potentially being closed for a while after the storm has passed.

 Keep an Emergency Supply Kit

 Another essential is having an emergency supply kit filled with heating packs and basic first-aid supplies for both your home and vehicle. Stay inside and avoid driving at all costs if possible. But if for some reason you must go, then you should also keep food, water, and blankets in the car in case you get stuck.

Are Fitness Trackers Leading us Astray?

Fitness trackers are a popular way for people to make sure they stay active, but they may actually do more harm than good. Although the goals they set for people are technically “healthy,” they fail to take the big picture into account. A goal-oriented model can help some people with accountability. However, striving to hit a cookie-cutter goal instead of listening to their body’s cues can encourage people to push themselves too far. When going slower or taking a rest day feels best to a person, fitness trackers only register that they have failed to meet a goal. They then attempt to guilt people into pushing themselves, which may be counterproductive to their health.

Another problem with fitness trackers is that they sometimes penalize people for doing the “wrong” exercise. Low-intensity exercise such as walking can register as skipping a workout, so on active recovery days fitness trackers alert people that their fitness levels are decreasing rather than sending positive messages to encourage continued mindful activity. Fitness trackers can also suggest that people are not getting enough exercise if they choose strength training rather than cardio, as they do not register this form of exercise very well. Some trackers, however, have begun to change this model and encourage people to hit weekly activity recommendations instead of daily cardio requirements. These trackers also allow people to personalize their goals sometimes.

Because most fitness trackers use an algorithm for daily goals rather than overarching personal goals, they fail to give people an accurate picture of their fitness levels. They frequently focus on linear goals like increased speed or steps each day instead of long-term goals like consistency. They also place a strong emphasis on calorie burn and VO2 max, both of which they often fail to calculate accurately. As fitness trackers show some people getting less fit the more they exercise, people can become frustrated and may feel more tempted to give up. In addition, positive reinforcements such as celebratory banners and messages, which fitness trackers provide to people who fulfill their arbitrary requirements, can lead people to obsess over meeting the tracker’s goal. These people can then lose sight of their own goals and the enjoyment that exercise can bring.

Best Cold-Weather Gear for 2020

Even if you live in a mild climate, unexpected cold weather can be difficult to face. For people in northern climates who experience long winters, warm clothing can be a matter of life and death. Working outside in subzero temperatures can quickly lead to frostbite or hypothermia.

If you’re planning to enjoy the cold weather this winter, it’s important to have clothes that will support you. Some winter clothes are built for bulk and insulation, trapping your body heat inside. Others are built for fitness and athletic purposes, allowing a wider range of movement.

A Columbia Steens Mountain Fleece Jacket is a good choice for those who want a relaxed, casual jacket that provides good insulation. It’s not sports gear, but it comes with both thermal insulation and a built-in scarf. The elastic cuffs hug your wrists to keep air from getting inside, and there’s a lot of room in the side pockets.

When you’re looking for a balaclava, the N-Ferno Hinged Fleece option is a good choice. It sets itself apart from other balaclava options by having a hinged design. The hinges change the way you drape the fabric, making it suitable for more weather conditions.

The design is built with wind-resistant panels that keep your face from getting burned. There are also reflective accents for when you’re out in dim lighting conditions. You might struggle if you want to wear sunglasses, though.

The Wicking Thermal Pant from Duofold is a pair of pants that provides thermal insulation. It allows complete freedom in your movements and keeps you comfortable even in freezing weather. The secret is the two layers, which trap a barrier of air around your legs. At the same time, the knitted cuffs keep cold air from sliding underneath.

GI’s Extreme Cold Weather pants are available for people who will be in incredibly dangerous temperatures. These pants are more heavy-duty than most apparel, being military-grade in design. The Primaloft fabric provides maximum insulation, and the garment has been wrapped in a windproof shell. For athletes who might take a tumble, the reinforced knees can protect your legs from injury.

In addition to all of this, these pants have a high water resistance level, and there are side zippers up the full length of the pants.  

Career Ideas for Winter Sports Enthusiasts

According to conventional wisdom, finding a career you’re passionate about will allow you to lead a more fulfilling life. If you enjoy playing or watching winter sports, you might be able to pursue a career that’s around the action.

For those who enjoy skiing, you might want to consider a career as a ski photographer. This job is unlike any other because you have to ski yourself when you follow the individuals to take their picture. You don’t have to become a professional skier yourself, but you can still incorporate the sport into your day-to-day life.

Ski photographers work directly on the ski slope, and they can sometimes get press passes for big professional skiing events.

Sports writers also turn a passion for sports into their career. If you enjoy most or all winter sports, you can cover developments in the different games. Writers do features for athletes, review sporting venues, and conduct important interviews. To do this job, you will need to have the right writing skills.

If you’re a fan of snowboarding or skiing, you might have brought a camera on the slopes. Many sporting cameras are designed specifically to capture high-speed events like this. You can become a professional videographer to record footage of people who want a memory of their adventure.

Some winter sports fans go into marketing. A marketing specialist is an expert in branding and selling their particular niche. You’ll usually work for a specific company and either sell their products or their venues. Marketing jobs allow you to do a lot of fun creative work, start campaigns on social media, and work with social media influencers.

Many people who don’t make the professional athlete cut decide to be an equipment manager instead. Equipment managers take care of the team equipment for a winter sports team. In addition to doing laundry, maintaining equipment, and making sure that uniforms are in place, the equipment manager also needs to keep an inventory and order new supplies when necessary.

For those who are skilled with physical touch, a career as a massage therapist is an option. Once you’ve taken the required courses and gotten certified, you can massage athletes to help make sure that their bodies stay healthy.  

How the Military Has Influenced Modern Men’s Fashion

Over the past two centuries, Men’s Fashion has been influenced more by military uniforms than any other time in history. While the evolution of fashion can sometimes define itself by the local economic or environmental situations of a country, the development of military-style had to do with the climates of the wars that were taking place overseas. How these designs made their way back home into everyday life in the past century is the exciting part.

Having ready-made clothes of different sizes is still a relevantly new concept. It used to be that everyone, including the military, had to have their clothes custom made by expert tailors up until roughly the 20th century. It was through these tailors that the streamlined military designs presented itself to the public. 

Take, for example, the three-piece suit. That iconic connection to the 1930s era, the three-piece suit draws its inspiration from the late 19th and early 20th-century French army’s “waistcoat and single-breasted jackets” uniforms.

Even what is considered casual wear of T-shirts, Khakis, and Chino pants today are influenced by the British and U.S military uniforms of the past. The T-shirt originally was an undergarment for Navy men fighting in the Spanish-American War. Khakis, Persian for “dust” to describe the color, were taken from the British military who, in turn, took it from the army of India who would dye their uniforms to blend in with the surrounding area. 

Chinos came from the Spanish military and became part of the U.S. military uniform after the Spanish-American War. All three items came about due to the environment of the area the wars were taking place in. The comfortability and ability to keep one cool make it easier to integrate them into civilian society.

Men returning from the war took advantage of the G.I. Bill to attend college and wearing parts of their uniforms that they still had from their time in the military. This exposure to a new fashion style is what intrigued nonmilitary people to go to second hand and military surplus stores to find these items to have for themselves. 

However, the three-piece suit and the now casual wear are not the only things that military fashion has influenced. The military uniforms of multiple countries influence boots, sunglasses, trench coats, the wristwatch, and even layering. Fashion inspiration comes from all aspects of life.   

The Best Pairs of Chinos for Men

It’s 2020, and the world is far less formal than it was. In this new laid-back environment, chinos offer a casual alternative to jeans for men. Chinos are versatile enough for men to wear them for any occasion. They are much more versatile than jeans. They can be dressed up for more formal occasions or dressed down for more relaxed times. Celebrities have even worn them on the red carpet.

Esquire.com’s article outlines 12 of the best chinos for men, “chinos are undergoing a renaissance.” The chinos of 2020 are not the preppy Ivy Leaguer chinos from the mid-nineteenth century. This military uniform pant has come a long way. Chinos’ styles for men have evolved from the flat front preppy styles to include more pleated, baggie styles.

For today’s chinos, the emphasis is on comfort, making them a good option for men who do not want to wear jeans. Some of the pleated styles even have side adjusters on them for more comfort. Couple that comfort with the style’s adaptability and men can choose to wear chinos to upscale functions or just to the office.

Although chinos have always been made of cotton fabric, even that has been made more flexible for comfort. Some of the best chinos for men are made of cotton blends, stretch cotton fabric, and cotton-linen blends instead of the traditional cotton twill.

In addition to the wide variety of cloth, today’s chinos for men also come in a large array of colors. They are not just dust-colored khakis anymore. The traditional colors of beige, olive, and blue will always be there, but now men can show their unique style with colorful chinos in red, pink, and yellow. When paired with a t-shirt, they are the epitome of casual style.

Chinos are easy to add to any man’s wardrobe, no matter his personal style. With the collection of fabrics and colors, the possibilities are endless. They are a comfortable substitute for jeans that can be dressed up or down for wear in any setting. They are every man’s pant style and should be in every modern man’s closet.

Winter Vacation Ideas for 2020

The best winter vacation ideas for 2020 will be those destinations that are open to travelers and have tourist attractions that allow guests to social distance themselves. No matter what type of trip or destination you have in mind, plan for outdoor activities or time spent focusing on health and wellness.

These are some of the most popular winter vacation ideas for 2020 that will take you around the world no matter where you are now.

Caribbean Island Destinations

The Caribbean has been an ideal winter destination for ages, and with current events, several islands are struggling and begging tourists to visit. Endless beaches, secluded rainforest trails to hike, and private rentals are perfect for an isolating trip. Being in paradise in the middle of winter makes this one of the best and most popular vacation ideas for 2020.

Rainforest Destinations in Costa Rica, Panama, or Hawaii

There are so many beautiful rainforest destinations around the world to consider, but Hawaii, Costa Rica, and Panama are the easiest to get to and open to visitors in 2020. Trail hiking, horseback riding, volcano exploring, and beach bumming are among the long list of activities you can take part in on your own.

Winter Skiing Hideout

If a week in a winter skiing hideout is your idea of a great vacation, there are plenty of spots to head to this year. Head west into the Rockies, where you will find ski towns, ski lodges, and plenty of space on the slopes. If a European skiing vacation is what you have in mind, the Alps offer more slopes and ski chalets than people to fill them. This year though, upgrade to a cabin of your own to help you maintain distance from other travelers and really give you the sense of the ultimate winter hideout.

Scandinavian Winter Wonderland

There is so much space and opportunity to isolate yourself in Scandinavia and enjoy a unique winter vacation. Many of the destinations and experiences during the winter in Scandinavia are already meant to be isolating experiences where you can enjoy and discover nature’s awesomeness. Sleep in an ice castle, go mushing with a pack of dogs, or take in the Northern Lights. 

Life Lessons Learned Through Winter Sports

You can learn life lessons through winter sports. The cool, dark skies call your name to get out there to do some skiing, snowboarding, or cross country running. Here are a few ways you can enjoy winter sports while learning life lessons at the same time.

Be Prepared

You have to be prepared if you’re going out into tough weather. If you’re heading into the snow, you need the right gear. You need warm clothing, goggles, a helmet, waterproof gear, snacks, and all your sports gear. You need to go to bed early and get up early. You have to make sure you have everything you need so you aren’t stuck in the cold without the essentials. This should happen all year. Go to bed early, rise early, and get ready for life. If you don’t get a good night of rest, you can’t do your everyday life with a sound mind.

Be Tough

Winter sports are often cold and uncomfortable. The snow might be flowing in your face while the wind whips across your cheeks. You have to push through all of these while continuing your sport. This will teach you toughness and the fun of getting through anything. Sometimes when you fight nature head-on, you learn how to face the world. It doesn’t matter if the wind is trying to knock you down on your snowboard or in life; you have the mental and physical toughness to push through it. You know there’s always a warm heater and a bright light at the end of the storm.

Enjoy The Moment

There are times in the middle of the cold that you just sit down and enjoy the beauty. The setting is perfect, the sky is blue, and the quiet is peaceful. Sit back and enjoy little kids as they learn to do their own winter sports. Watch the snow in all its beauty fall to the ground. This is the time you’re able to slow down and just love life. There will be so many things in life that stress you out. These times in the cool air help you realize it’s okay to stop and feel the moment. Don’t stress about things so much. Find this peace again.

Weirdest Men’s Fashion Trends

via Unsplash

Some fashion trends can be questionable and leave people to ask themselves, What were the designers thinking? Whether you love them or hate them, absurd fashion designs are meant to grab the attention of the public with their eye-catching patterns, so they’re at the very least doing their job. That doesn’t mean we can’t take a moment and appreciate just how confusing the fashion trends were, though. Here are a few weird fashion trends for men over the past few years.

Opposuits

Opposuits are akin to ugly Christmas sweaters: you can’t help but love them for what they are, but seeing them makes you stop for a moment to take in the pattern of the clothing. These suits are perfect for men who don’t take themselves too seriously and don’t mind that attitude extending to their wardrobe. The company that sells then says that they sell hundreds of thousands of these suits a year, with the pants, jacket, and tie all sporting the same pattern and retailing at $99. 

RompHim

Rompers are a popular women’s fashion choice, and in spring 2017, ACED Design followed the trend by designing rompers for men. The company launched a Kickstarter for the product, called RompHim, and exceeded its $10,000 goal on the first day of the campaign. The goal behind the RompHim was to make a piece of men’s clothing that was “stylish and fun without sacrificing comfort, fit, and versatility.” 

Lace Separates

Following the RompHim, Hoza Rodriguez worked under a streetwear company named Hologram City to produce Lace Separates: a line of see-through lace shorts and button-downs in a series of different pastel colors, costing about $100 a set. The entire outfit is see-through save for the collar and white belt, letting white underwear peek out from underneath the lace.

Square Toe Shoes

GQ Magazine, a men’s fashion magazine, launched a campaign in April 2017 to stop the production of square toe shoes. According to the magazine, the shoes were extremely ugly and urged its readers to persuade friends and family to stop wearing the shoes altogether. They even started a social media movement under the hashtag, #NoSquareToes.

How to Vacation Safely This Summer

Summer is the time for vacation, and even with a pandemic going on, travelers are still itching to get out of their homes and hit the road to enjoy themselves. While no one can stop you from taking a vacation (save for, maybe, the destinations you have in mind being closed), if you’re going to do so it’s best to do so safely. Without a vaccine, it’s crucial to follow the guidelines established by health organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and WHO (World Health Organization). Doing so will minimize the chances of catching the coronavirus yourself and the chance of passing it to others if you’re an asymptomatic carrier. 

Travel may be different now than it was a year ago, but with beaches, mountains, lakes, islands, private vacation homes, and remote hotels available to enjoy, it’s still possible to make the most out of your summer. Here are a few ways how.


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