Hot and cold packs…given the nature of my job, these are incredibly easy to come by, and I often take them for granted. However, the thought occurred to me the other day that there might be some runners out there who would really like to heat their muscles before exercise, or have a good cold pack to take care of an injury. So this post is dedicated to you. I’d like to teach you how to make your own hot and cold packs! Don’t worry-if I can do it…you can do it
We’ll start with the hot packs first. Warning: these do require a small amount of sewing, but again…if I can do it… 😉
1st step is to choose a fabric for your hot pack. This can be anything you want it to be. A couple years ago, I made one for my husband out of Miami Dolphins fabric because that’s his favorite NFL team… Once you’ve picked your fabric, try and pick a thread that matches it. When in doubt, pick white The last thing you’ll have to buy is a bag of rice! Just pick the cheapest rice in the store…..quality doesn’t matter in this case. For my rice bag, I used a 5lb bag of rice, but basically pick a size that’s correlates to how large you want your hot pack to be.
2nd step is to locate a sewing machine if you don’t own one Then, cut your fabric to the desired size (mine was 2 ft by 1 ft). Once you’ve cut your fabric, you’ll begin sewing. Sew around all of the edges except for about a 3 inch opening. You’ll need this open to put the rice in.
3rd step. Turn the fabric inside out. This makes it all pretty so that you don’t have any open seams. Then you can add the rice! The best way to do it is with a funnel so that you don’t spill anything.
4th step. Sewing shut the opening. This sadly involves hand-stitching. Now, if you don’t care what your rice pack looks like, you can skip turning the fabric inside out and then just sew the opening shut after you put the rice in. I don’t recommend that though. I do recommend very carefully hand stitching the opening closed by doing what’s called “slip stitching”. After you’ve finished, you should have a pack that looks somewhat like this!
Alright, next is the ice packs. These are much easier to make! All you need is a Ziploc bag, rubbing alcohol, and water Fill the Ziploc bag with 1park rubbing alcohol to 3 parts water. This will vary based on the size of your Ziploc bag. (an example would be 1 cup rubbing alcohol and 3 cups water) After you’ve filled it, you can just put it in the freezer! Unlike when you just fill a bag with ice and freeze it, these packs will actually be malleable so you can mold them into the shape you want them!
See? Super simple! Have fun, and happy sewing! The rice heat packs also make great gifts for the fellow running/workout enthusiasts in your life!