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Winter Cycling Don't let snow and ice discourage you this winter. The key element to year-round cycling is proper attire! Check out this winter cycling forum to chat with other ice bike fanatics.

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Old 10-10-08, 09:56 AM   #1
125psi
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Chilled... what's going on

Hi- I'm fairly new to this fall winter riding I've noticed that usually after a ride in 49F to 57F I get chilled for several hours. Not sure what I am doing wrong. I've got the thermal tights, coat, gloves, etc. I know I'm sweating some so perhaps my clothing is causing me to get too warm and with the wind chill causing me to chill out some?

At this time I'm not wearing any head covers, etc. Just a helmet. could that be contributing?

Anyone else have this?
Don't need to be getting sick from riding.

This has happened more than once.

Thanks
brian
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Old 10-10-08, 09:58 AM   #2
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Drink hot coffee, tea, chocolate, water, etc.
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Old 10-10-08, 10:41 AM   #3
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Drink hot coffee, tea, chocolate, water, etc.
Oh that makes sense. I'll give this a try next time.
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Old 10-10-08, 10:44 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by 125psi View Post
Hi- I'm fairly new to this fall winter riding I've noticed that usually after a ride in 49F to 57F I get chilled for several hours. Not sure what I am doing wrong. I've got the thermal tights, coat, gloves, etc. I know I'm sweating some so perhaps my clothing is causing me to get too warm and with the wind chill causing me to chill out some?

At this time I'm not wearing any head covers, etc. Just a helmet. could that be contributing?

Anyone else have this?
Don't need to be getting sick from riding.

This has happened more than once.

Thanks
brian
I wear a thin beanie under my helmet on days like that. It makes quite a difference.
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Old 10-10-08, 11:10 AM   #5
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Cover your head, ride up a steep hill. You'll be plenty warm.
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Old 10-10-08, 12:27 PM   #6
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I find that keeping the wind off is more important than insulation (ie, layers of wool or fleece). To be comfortable in the cold I need gore-tex mitten shells, windproof jacket and over-pants, a helmet cover, and something to cover my ears. YMMV.
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Old 10-10-08, 12:40 PM   #7
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This happens to me too ... usually when I'm just slightly underdressed for the weather. This is often why I wear more clothing when I cycle than most people.

Definitely try wearing something on your head to help keep the warmth in.
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Old 10-11-08, 01:53 PM   #8
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Thanks for the tips. Went out and got a sweathat cap and it worked well. I did notice today I need to get the shoe covers since after 14miles my feet were cold. Also I got some decent gloves which really help.

There were other cyclist out dressed way less than me but I've averaging 18-19mph so wind chill may be a factor. I'd rather be warm than cold.

b
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Old 10-11-08, 02:23 PM   #9
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I've found that being overdressed, not underdressed is what causes chills after a ride. In the temperature range the OP gave, I'm in shorts and a t-shirt towards the high end, and I would add thin gloves and a thin longsleeve towards the lower end. If you can keep from sweating too much, your body temperature will lower itself in a controlled manner once you stop riding. If you are sweaty, your body over-compensates, and leaves you with chills.
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Old 10-11-08, 08:59 PM   #10
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No two riders are alike when it comes to natural body insulation and ability to deal with wind chill, which occurs naturally when riding a bike, even on an absolutely calm day. Experiment with different layers of clothing and find out what works best.

I agree with the posters who suggested a helmet liner and cover. Keeping the core warm is essential too. I sometimes wear a windproof vest which helps with this, and it stows very compactly in a jersey pocket once I warm up and don't need it anymore. Of course many days I wear it for the entire ride.
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Old 10-12-08, 06:16 AM   #11
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After!

Notice he said "after" the ride. When you stop you're gonna be chilled. Get out of damp clothing, eat something and shower if that's an option. A hot drink is great too. If you're comfortable while riding no need to add more clothing.

My 2 cents.
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Old 10-12-08, 08:18 AM   #12
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Taping the front vents on your helmet helps also - esp if there are long descents during the ride.
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Old 10-12-08, 11:42 AM   #13
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I would add that I think there are seasonal changes your body has to go though. I seem to feel a lot colder in the fall I think because my body is used to the warm weather and is trying to adjust to the cold. It takes time and exposure for your "blood to thicken up" so to speak. By spring, the same weather feels tropical.

I guess my point is that you'll get used to it, your body will adjust to it.
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Old 10-17-08, 08:53 PM   #14
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Some people will need more insulation and wind protection than others. Also, make sure you get out of those sweaty biking clothes and into a hot shower within a half an hour. It could be the damp clothes cooling your body off. Make sure you eat something as soon as you come back off any ride over 60 minutes long.

Could also be your bodies thermostat getting confused for some reason.

Between 49-57F most people only need long biking tights or shorts and a long sleeve jersey and windbreaker. But as has been stated. Everyone is different and the wind chill combined with prolonged exertion can play with your bodies thermstat. Experiment until you find out what works for you to solve the problem.
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Old 10-19-08, 07:12 PM   #15
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If your feeling sweat and dampness...then you're either overdressed or wearing the wrong fabrics. No cotton at all. If your clothes are holding moisture and getting wet...you're going to cool much must faster and end up lowering your core temperature. Damp clothes and an uncovered head and the two worst threats for hypothermia.
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Old 10-19-08, 09:49 PM   #16
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Thanks for the responses. Part I don't get is that you're supposed to find this balance between being cool and hot (i.e. temp wise for the smart as#s who could have fun with that sentence). I suppose with trial and error I'll figure it out. The deal is I ride 40 miles I'm going to sweat some. Today I did about 34 and I was sweating a little. My ride started out at 56F and jumped to about 63F towards the end. BTW, I was wearing "100% thermal textured polyester" long sleeve shirt, tights w/short underneath,sweathat, gloves and a illuminite vest (shoes too). I could have done without the vest but no place to put it- pockets full. Very minor chills today but when I got home I hit the shower and been doing fine.

Thanks,

B
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Old 10-19-08, 10:22 PM   #17
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Thanks for the responses. Part I don't get is that you're supposed to find this balance between being cool and hot (i.e. temp wise for the smart as#s who could have fun with that sentence). I suppose with trial and error I'll figure it out. The deal is I ride 40 miles I'm going to sweat some. Today I did about 34 and I was sweating a little. My ride started out at 56F and jumped to about 63F towards the end. BTW, I was wearing "100% thermal textured polyester" long sleeve shirt, tights w/short underneath,sweathat, gloves and a illuminite vest (shoes too). I could have done without the vest but no place to put it- pockets full. Very minor chills today but when I got home I hit the shower and been doing fine.

Thanks,

B
It can take a while to find out what works the best for you. The vest was a good idea because it adds little warmth so you won't over heat but it allows the layers underneath to insulate properly. Here are some other suggestions that I have found work for me. YMMV.

I always use full long sleeve jacket or windbreaker. Even though the arms don't have to stay as warm as the core they are good heat exchangers that can cool down your core too much if they are out in the cool wind. IF it's cool enough to need wind protection on my core I cover my arms also.

Some people prefer to be a little cool on the bike and this works well for many but not for me. I like to feel neutral. The body functions better when warm so if anything it is better to be slightly warmer than cold. If you are riding hard you are going to sweat faster than your clothes can fully dry unless it is very hot (over 100F) so there isn't much point in wearing very little in the cold since at cold temps your clothes won't stay dry anyway. The common knowledge says to go out a little cool when you first start your ride and then as you heat up you'll be fine. But if you are chilled and you used this approach you need a little more insulation. I prefer to feel neutral instead of a little cool when I start my ride then I know I have the right amount of stuff on.

Make sure the sweathat on your head is not cotton. It will work like an air conditioner as soon as it gets a little moisture on it.

Don't underestimate the insulation needs of the upper body. The upper body is doing little work and generally needs at least one more layer than the legs do to stay warm. So if you are wearing tights on your legs and your legs are good you can assume you need about double the insulation value on your upper body. To get it you may want a good wind breaker shell jacket and a slighty thicker long sleeve jersey. If this is not quite warm enough add a thin light weight long sleeve wicking long john top underneath the jersey. The kind designed for active sports like skiing.

Last edited by Hezz; 10-19-08 at 10:30 PM.
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Old 10-20-08, 03:32 AM   #18
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Making Sure........

Quote:
Originally Posted by 125psi View Post
Hi- I'm fairly new to this fall winter riding I've noticed that usually after a ride in 49F to 57F I get chilled for several hours. Not sure what I am doing wrong. I've got the thermal tights, coat, gloves, etc. I know I'm sweating some so perhaps my clothing is causing me to get too warm and with the wind chill causing me to chill out some?

At this time I'm not wearing any head covers, etc. Just a helmet. could that be contributing?

Anyone else have this?
Don't need to be getting sick from riding.

This has happened more than once.

Thanks
brian

Make darn sure that you are keeping both your head AND feet warm. Or at least try to anyway. I have been out when it's been 16 below zero and actually have cracked a sweat. Here's a photo....



I am wearing coveralls, heavy jacket, gloves, extra socks, ear protectors, stocking hat and my helmet. And that photo I took while it was around 16 below with a wind chill of about 25-30 below. I am NOT saying that I wasn't cold, but when you don't own a car you just make things work.
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