Let there be more light …

I don’t know if I suffer from SAD – seasonal affective disorder – or not. If I do, I think it is a mild case. Don’t know what SAD is?

Here’s the Mayo Clinic explaining it, “Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that’s related to changes in seasons — SAD begins and ends at about the same times every year. If you’re like most people with SAD, your symptoms start in the fall and continue into the winter months, sapping your energy and making you feel moody. Less often, SAD causes depression in the spring or early summer.”

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Photo by Szabó Viktor on Pexels.com

“Treatment for SAD may include light therapy (phototherapy), medications and psychotherapy.”

What I do know about myself is that I don’t feel happy about the dwindling hours of sunlight as winter advances. I can’t ride my bike as often because of the looming darkness. By late December I am thrilled to see that the days are beginning, very slowly, a few minutes a day, but undeniably, to have more light.

I live in Chicago. To help me to enjoy the return of the light as winter ebbs, I have charted the sunrise and sunset for January through March. I mentioned living in Chicago because you likely live elsewhere and your sunrise and set times will vary somewhat from mine.

On January 1, sunrise occurs at 7 :18 AM and sunset at 4:29 PM. On January 31, sunrise has slipped down to 7:05 AM and sunset has stretched out to 5:04 PM. The sun rises 13 minutes earlier and sets 35 minutes later. That is an increase of 48 minutes of daylight in the first month of the year.

It just keeps getting better. In February, we add a further 67 minutes of sunlight to our day. So, at the end of February, we have added 115 minutes of light, nearly two hours since January first.

The month of March sees, a further 99 minutes of daylight added. That makes a total of 214 minutes – three and more than a half hours of additional light per day total in the first three months of the year.

I don’t know if this kind of info has an interest for you, but for me, a guy who likes to be outdoors, it is music to my ears – and eyes. I hope you have a great bright day.



Filed under daylight, SAD, seasonal affective disorder, sunshine

2 responses to “Let there be more light …

  1. I used to live in Seattle and the gloom did get to me since I’m a Texan. If you have a trainer or go to use a stationery bike at a gym it’s not the same but could keep you biking if you don’t already. Alot of people use Zwift but if I had to bike inside, I’d rather watch a helmet video of someone biking in the Rockies. I’d need to get another device so I could count the miles in the trainer. I just brought mine home from storage for my roommate but the mild winter hasn’t required it yet. It’s just so noisy and boring! Of course if you have loads of cash you could always get a Peleton LOL.

    Liked by 1 person

    • As you know, I am an outdoor rider at almost any cost. However, if you put a gun to my head, I could ride a Schwinn Airdyne bike indoors. It has a flywheel in the front that generates air on you like you are outside. Regarding bad weather, do you have access to stairs? Stair climbing is superb exercise. I live in a high rise and use that as an alternative. I have posted on it. Check it out in my blog. BUT, avoid walking down stairs. That is very damaging to the knees. I climb up the stairs and take the elevator down. Have a great day!


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