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Thread: The heat

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    Senior Member eric von zipper's Avatar
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    The heat

    Do you all cut your miles down when it gets crazy hot? I started my x-country and i'm in NC (in Lumberton right now). Last 2 days, both 50 mile days, have been upper 90sF and they are calling for 99F in a few days. I'm taking breaks every chance I get and drinking a lot of water/gatorade. I'm a little concerned about pushing it too hard.
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    For me..... Getting going at or before sunrise helps. I tend to knock out a quick 25 before it gets crazy hot. Not a cure but it sure beats messing around camp in the mornings until it gets hot.
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    Senior Member Cyclebum's Avatar
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    When it gets too hot for mid day cycling, I'll leave at dawn and ride until about noon, knocking out about 40 miles with stops. Then hang out in a city park and/or c-store until about 6. Then maybe an hour or two more before stopping for the night. I ride slow and stop frequently, so 50-60 miles/day max.
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    Quote Originally Posted by eric von zipper View Post
    Do you all cut your miles down when it gets crazy hot? I started my x-country and i'm in NC (in Lumberton right now). Last 2 days, both 50 mile days, have been upper 90sF and they are calling for 99F in a few days. I'm taking breaks every chance I get and drinking a lot of water/gatorade. I'm a little concerned about pushing it too hard.
    A Camelbak packed with ice...as much as you can get in there...does wonders. It's nicer to drink cold water, the close proximity of the mouth piece means you drink more and the ice against your back cools you. You can always add more if the first batch melts. In humid conditions, the water condensing on the bag drips off and onto your back further cooling you.
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    Know and watch for the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. I've been there and it can be dangerous. If you really are pushing it too hard, you'll start experiencing the symptoms of heat exhaustion, like cramps, headache and dizziness. Sometimes I find the only way to keep those at bay is to stop frequently and cool off. Obviously, fluids are key, but it's tough to keep up.

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    +1 on the Camelbak with ice.

    I had some low 90s days (high humidity) on my recent Atlantic Coast Bike Tour and found that a Camelbak 1/2 full of ice would stay cold for several hours.

    Another idea is to put a cloth (wash cloth from a motel?) around your water bottles and soak the cloths with water. The evaporation off the cloths will keep the water cool (not sure how this works in high humidity).

    I also found that it was cooler when the bike was moving then when I stopped, which felt like I was standing next to an open oven.

    Good luck and have a great time.

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    Senior Member KDC1956's Avatar
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    With a good head light you can leave @4am ride until about 9 or 10am you should be able to get in 30 or 40 miles then stop for the day setup camp and do what you feel like doing.That's what I have done in the past.I like the cold weather riding best.

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    mosquito rancher adamrice's Avatar
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    I actually kinda enjoy riding in hot weather (and lucky me, I get a lot of it). But there's no question you can overdo it. If you're paying attention to your body, you'll notice if/when you start feeling a little lightheaded, which is a sign to take a break. Wearing a bandana on your head and/or neck and occasionally soaking it will help cool you down. Polar insulated bottles will keep water cool (or at least not hot).

    In theory, you can drink so much water that you throw your electrolytes out of balance. I'm not sure how much that would be, but it would need to be a lot. An occasional gatorade cut 50/50 with water will take care of that.

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    Senior Member eric von zipper's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tips and suggestions, all. I'll adjust my riding time (if I can get up that early!) and will be on the look out for a place to pick up a camel back.
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    Quote Originally Posted by eric von zipper View Post
    Do you all cut your miles down when it gets crazy hot? I started my x-country and i'm in NC (in Lumberton right now). Last 2 days, both 50 mile days, have been upper 90sF and they are calling for 99F in a few days. I'm taking breaks every chance I get and drinking a lot of water/gatorade. I'm a little concerned about pushing it too hard.
    Dude I am from the same area (Ft Bragg for 4 years, originally from Athens GA) there is no way to acclimate to Lumberton 99 degree heat which comes with 90% humidity. Just can't do it. Ride in the morning or evening, and for god's sake make sure you are very well hydrated...I have seen people die from the heat there.

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    Cycled on all continents JohnyW's Avatar
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    Hi,

    not really I go as far as I go. under 30C in general freeze lightly. On moderate temp. 30-40C I go normally my longest distances. So for me heat begins at 40C.
    Over 40C I may longer rest in supply stations (gas station, Shops, Shade). Normally 2-3L per 100 km (during the day) is enough for me. If the temp. rise to 50C I can't drink anything cause it tastes bad (I should try hot drinks like coffee, tea). I didn't cut down. In Namibia I got heat sick and started vomitting while cycling. I didn't want to turn so I proceed to the next house (120 km). If you have more than 37C you really have take care. Your body overheats and you're permantly in fever. Then it's necessary to cool down (e.g go swimming)

    My general strategy: Drink in the morning, make your hat wet (8-10 times per day), make your cloths wet (in Sri Lanka we lay under fountains), sleep in air conditioned rooms, don't drink (ice) cold drinks during the day, reduce the pace. I prefer the wind while cycling instead of resting. Rest are normally longer than normal (I friend said: Your third cigarette helped my to survive - the planned 15 min break was extend to 45-60 min.)

    Thomas
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    Senior Member JeanM's Avatar
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    Wondering if any of you dress up for heat, like people from the desert?

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    Senior Member tarwheel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeanM View Post
    Wondering if any of you dress up for heat, like people from the desert?
    Doesn't work with high humidity. Basically, there is no way to keep cool when it is very hot AND humid.

    The weather in NC has been miserable lately, much hotter than normal for this time of year. Like others said, your best strategy would be to get up earlier and try to finish your ride during the morning hours. The problem with that is the humidity is also higher in the mornings, but at least it's cooler. Waiting until late afternoon to ride is not a good solution because it takes a long time to cool off, plus the threat of thunderstorms is much higher then.

    I have been on a number of summer tours when we tried to hit the road by 6 am, just to beat the heat. I am riding Bike Virginia starting this weekend and will be using that strategy if things don't cool down by then.

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    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    I am from NC (Sandhills region) the only way to beat the heat and humidity is to ride very early and very late. On days where the forecast heat index is going to exceed 98* I do my best to be in the shade prior to that point. And I have taken a day or two off when it was too hot like it is now. FWIW currently I am in Iowa where the temps are a more seasonable 86*

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    do not, do not push it. Take advantage of evaporative cooling with extra water over your back and head when the temps and humidity allow it so that you can squeak by the few hours when it's too humid to get that benefit. In other words if you're riding early in the morning go ahead and cool yourself more than feels necessary so that you don't hit the heat needing recovery. Cold camel back sounds like good first aid.

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    Cycled on all continents JohnyW's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeanM View Post
    Wondering if any of you dress up for heat, like people from the desert?
    I wear headwear that the head is always in shade. I don't wear a helmet if the temp in the sun exceed 40C. But I always cycle with bike shorts and t-shirt (In the Iran or Saudi Arabia I'd change to long treking traousers.

    By the way: I don't rest during the day. It's to boring... I could read, but I read lot in evenings (So I would carry 10-15 books with me).
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    My technique is usually to push hard from gas station to gas station, resting in the AC for about 20 to 30 minutes each time.

    I'm not a heat person.
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    Hooked on Touring
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    What heat?
    46 degrees here in Buffalo, Wyoming this morning.

    Used to live in NC.
    Will NEVER go back unless dragged kickin' and screamin'.

    PS - Yeah, it gets a little chilly in winter.

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    I'm a morning person anyways,so I'm up,have breakfast and camp torn down by sunrise.I like to start early,take a break about noon for a couple hours,then continue on for a couple hours in the late afternoon when temps are going to be hot.

    I wear one of those funny cycling hats and keep it wet when hot out.If really hot,I keep a wet bandana around my neck to help keep my body temps down(lot's of blood runs thru the neck),drink LOTS of water.If you wait until your thirsty,it's too late,you'll never recover that day.

    I only average about 50 miles a day when touring,so I'm not really working all that hard to begin with.
    Last edited by Booger1; 06-23-10 at 11:46 AM.
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    Long Live Long Rides
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    I just finished a 1000 mile ride from KCMO to Rome, GA. Man did it get freaking hot and humid! Temps in the upper 90s and humidity at above 80%. One thing I learned several years ago is to take a long sleeved cotton shirt and soak it. Put it on. I really does wonders for the heat on your back and arms as you ride (providing you have extra water!)

    I also stuff a bandana under the back side of my helmet and drape it over my neck to help keep the heat and sun off my neck. Seemed to help.

    I've heard awesome things about using a Camelbak. I haven't tried it but everyone I know that rides with one swears by them.

    I did ride early morning, goofed off during the hottest part of the day, and resumed later until about 8:00pm. Then looked for a place to pitch the tent. I averaged about 60-70 miles each day with a couple of lesser days and a couple of 80+ mile days.

    All good tips above.

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    Two years ago while touring from the southeast to the northeast (similar weather), I was in North Carolina and I developed kidney stones which resulted in a ride in an ambulance to the hospital. Passed the stone(s) the next day. The emergency room doctor told me that it was probably a result of lack of fluids. I thought I was drinking plenty. He told me to double whatever I thought was plenty.

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    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry L View Post
    Two years ago while touring from the southeast to the northeast (similar weather), I was in North Carolina and I developed kidney stones which resulted in a ride in an ambulance to the hospital. Passed the stone(s) the next day. The emergency room doctor told me that it was probably a result of lack of fluids. I thought I was drinking plenty. He told me to double whatever I thought was plenty.
    I work outside for a living, mostly in the Carolinas, our safety and health department figures that we need to be drinking around 3 gallons of water per man per day under current conditions. We do try to mitigate the conditions by working at nights in the supposedly cooler part of the day.

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  23. #23
    Sore saddle cyclist Shifty's Avatar
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    When it gets hot here I choose rides in the forest where it's shady, maybe with a nice stream for a dip along the way. The mountains to the east of town offer lots of options, and the coast range to the west also has nice rides. Another good option here when it heats up is to drive to the Oregon Coast and do a bike ride there, it's usually 15 - 20 degrees cooler on the coast when hot in town.

    Not bad yet though, we still have not had an 80 degree day yet this year in Eugene, yesterday it was 75, dry and sunny for my ride.
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    Here are my favourite strategies for dealing with hot and humid conditions:

    1. Cover up. Wear long sleeves on your arms, and drape something like a bandanna over the back of your neck.

    2. Drink copiously. I use Gatorade and water. I don't have a Camelback, but I do stop every 10 or 15 minutes to take a swig or two (or three).

    3. Don't ride during the hottest time of the day. On the hottest days, I stop for lunch around noon, and hang out in an air-conditioned building until 2:30 or 3 PM. I get a lot of reading done, or sodukos solved!

    4. Stop frequently and rest in the shade.

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