Owning Winter

Running in the cold

winter running jen is green

Jen during one of her winter races.

By Jen Masa

We're always inspired when we read about the races Jen is running. And as self-described "winter runner," she runs all year round. So we thought we'd ask her for a few ideas about how to make running outside more comfortable and fun during the cold weather months.

Yes, winter is here! But that doesn't mean we have to stay indoors and on our couches. I like to stay active throughout the whole year, especially during the winter. Even when my couch seems more inviting, sometimes exercising outside in the cold can be invigorating! And there's nothing better than feeling the sunshine on your face! When exercising, I'll take cold weather over humidity any day. Within the past few years, I've made a habit of running outside in the winter and I really enjoy it.

Here are a few suggestions to help make your winter running experience more tolerable!

(there's more)

Cooking out the cold

black eyed peas ingredients

The ingredients for some delicious winter food. And a lot of it.

By Daniel B.

Growing up in Miami there was a well-worn gripe about the weather, "It's not the heat, it's the humidity."

For me the challenge of making it through an Albany winter isn't the cold, it's the dryness.

Cold is easy to combat. Sweaters, heavy wool socks, hats, gloves, jackets, and scarves work well. I just got my first balaclava. But when the temperature dips, instead of turning up the thermostat that just further dries the air, I like to grab my bean pot and simmer a mass quantity of legumes for hours.

Not only does it fill the house with wonderful smells, the long process of simmering liquid on the stove is a great way of replenishing the moisture in the air. And when the beans are done, they are delicious -- and warm you from the inside as well.

Legumes are some of my favorite foods, and they are enjoyed all over the world in a variety of forms. They can be fiery, sweet, pungent, earthy, tart, savory, meaty, creamy or crunchy. They can be the basis of a meal, a side dish, or a topping. Today, I'm sharing three relatively easy bean preparations that reflect this diversity. If you can boil water, and cut up an onion, you should be able to make these.

Now let me take you on a trip to India, Cuba and then back home to the American South.

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Winter stuff for your car, your house, and you

yaktrax on a boot

Martin on YakTrax: "These ingenious little cheap accessories saved my ass a few times walking around the city on icy sidewalks..."

By Martin Daley

Winter will be here soon, whether you like it or not. Rather than be a passive complainer, make to the choice to grab winter before it grabs you. Over the next few weeks we'll have a series of posts about how to make winter better/easier/more fun. You should own winter, not the other way around.

First up: Martin's list of items you should have for your car, house, and person. He is both a hardy Northeasterner and the kind of guy who stops to help people get their cars unstuck from the snow. Now is a good time to get these things organized -- before you actually need them.

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