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Training & Nutrition Learn how to develop a training schedule that's good for you. What should you eat and drink on your ride? Learn everything you need to know about training and nutrition here.

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Old 03-14-09, 07:07 PM   #1
FlyingPete
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I stink!

Over the last few months I have been working my way out of being a couch potato to hopefully some serious bike riding (we have a couple of 150km+ local events I have as goals to complete).

So over the last four months I have been building up my distances and increasing my average speed throughout (my main measure of improvement), just recently I moved from my aging MTB to a road bike and am new covering more distance faster than ever before

Anyway to my question, on Friday night I got in from a 25km hilly ride and was pushing my self more than usual, when I got in off my bike after a warm down I noticed I really stank, normally I am just wet from sweat but this was different, it was a smell I hadn't smelt for many years, last time was when I was on Outward Bound and the gear drying room had the same smell, I had always assumed it was just a mix up of everyone's odors on wet or damp gear. The catch here is I had showered ans everything was clean on before the ride.

That got me thinking is this due to something my body is doing differently after some harder than normal (for me) exercise?
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Old 03-15-09, 02:02 AM   #2
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It could be your jersey material. Have you changed to a new jersey?

The bacteria that causes the smell seems to thrive best in certain fabrics. Wool is the least offensive.
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Old 03-15-09, 08:35 AM   #3
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Did you smell like ammonia? Apparently that is pretty common if you go extra hard.
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Old 03-15-09, 05:28 PM   #4
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It could be your jersey material. Have you changed to a new jersey?

The bacteria that causes the smell seems to thrive best in certain fabrics. Wool is the least offensive.
Same jersey I have used for the last few months, synthetic though.

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Did you smell like ammonia? Apparently that is pretty common if you go extra hard.
Didn't smell like ammonia, a bit almost sweet though.
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Old 03-15-09, 05:51 PM   #5
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FlyingPete; synthetic jersey's do stink. I use a synthetic base layer and after a few months they retain a funk that washing seems to remove (until it gets warmed up by your body). Part of the fun I'm afraid
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Old 03-15-09, 06:17 PM   #6
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Ah, oh well, that also explains the stink in those drying rooms!
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Old 03-15-09, 06:54 PM   #7
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I bet it's the jersey or shorts. Go to the gym or go out running for 30-40 minutes. If you wear something completely different and work up a sweat, do you still smell like that? Maybe it's just time to throw out your current biking clothes.
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Old 04-16-09, 10:24 PM   #8
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Pushing self hard + sweet smell in breath/sweat = ketosis. Pushed yourself a hair too hard- no biggie.
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Old 04-17-09, 08:48 AM   #9
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It might just be a question of changing your laundry settings. Washing exercise clothing in cold or warm water isn't an aggressive enough treatment to get all the ahem... 'exercise residue' out. Things can smell clean after being washed in cold water, but that's largely a function of residual laundry detergent masking the underlying odours. Once you've worked up a sweat, the leftovers from your last workout start to ripen, and it's not pleasant.

Try washing your cycling clothes in hot water (at least 65C) with a good detergent. All my cycling gear is synthetic, but even the items I've had for years smell just fine.

(PS-Apologies for sounding like your mother.)
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Old 04-18-09, 03:14 PM   #10
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That is the smell of getting stronger. I enjoy it, my wife...not so much!
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Old 04-18-09, 05:17 PM   #11
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uhm... don't throw out the clothes.

I've had this problem.

Here is a link to the thread I started.

Fabric Stink?

I'm going to assume you're too lazy to read throw it all. When you wash 'em, just throw in a pound of baking soda and it should clear things up. Or... you can try a couple cups of vinegar.
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Old 05-12-09, 11:55 AM   #12
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It is from the food you ate the day or night before. I can't eat tuna or other fish if I'm going to sweat around other people. Oh I have issues with garlic too.
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Old 05-12-09, 12:59 PM   #13
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Are you eating enough carbs? If not, you could have gone into ketosis, where your body is breaking down fat into ketone bodies which your brain can use for fuel in lieu of glucose. A byproduct is acetone which is excreted in breath, sweat, and urine. Acetone is highly volatile and has a slightly sweet smell that can give sweat and urine a strong and strange odor.
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Old 05-12-09, 06:09 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FlyingPete View Post
Over the last few months I have been working my way out of being a couch potato to hopefully some serious bike riding (we have a couple of 150km+ local events I have as goals to complete).

So over the last four months I have been building up my distances and increasing my average speed throughout (my main measure of improvement), just recently I moved from my aging MTB to a road bike and am new covering more distance faster than ever before

Anyway to my question, on Friday night I got in from a 25km hilly ride and was pushing my self more than usual, when I got in off my bike after a warm down I noticed I really stank, normally I am just wet from sweat but this was different, it was a smell I hadn't smelt for many years, last time was when I was on Outward Bound and the gear drying room had the same smell, I had always assumed it was just a mix up of everyone's odors on wet or damp gear. The catch here is I had showered ans everything was clean on before the ride.

That got me thinking is this due to something my body is doing differently after some harder than normal (for me) exercise?
These odors are usually caused by different species of microorganisms -- usually bacteria, but also fungi and other organisms.

Each species (and there are many thousands of species) has its own set of secretions and odors. Some species secrete especially strong and objectionable substances and odors.

Limburger cheese is a cheese that originated in the historical Duchy of Limburg, which is now divided between modern-day Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. Limburger is especially known for its pungent odor. The bacterium used to ferment Limburger cheese and other rind-washed cheeses is Brevibacterium linens; this same bacterium is found on human skin and is partially responsible for human body odor.[1]

There are other species that appear on the human body and also have ususually strong odors. Some of them are used in cheeses and other fermented foods. Some species that are responsible for foot odor, for example, are also found in vinegars.

One solution is to learn to manage the species of microorganisms and their numbers.

Last edited by Niles H.; 05-12-09 at 06:14 PM.
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