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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 11-19-08, 05:10 PM   #1
Bo-Ridley
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dizzyness

I am wondering if anyone else gets dizzy when--or, mostly, after, a cold weather ride. I had forgotten that this happens to me but since the weather has changed I'm reminded. Today was pretty cold in Gotham and when I finished riding, both coming and going, today I was dizzy. I assume that this is just an inner ear thing but I am interested if this happens with others.
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Old 11-19-08, 07:34 PM   #2
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I have never experienced this but it is possible that your inner ear is getting a little too cold. Perhaps it is unusually sensitive to colder conditions. Try some foam earplugs to keep out the cold air and see if it helps. They are very cheap and if it does help you will know what to do to manage the problem. The foam earplugs are also very good insulators.
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Old 11-27-08, 09:40 AM   #3
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Dizzyness

Yes it could be inner ear but it can be a drop in blood pressure. Winter air is super dry and most of your bod fluids for someone breathing hard is expelled out of your breath which you can readily see leaving you huge clouds of moist expired air. Check your BP after a winter cruise. BP fluxuates especially in athletes. You could be symptomatically dehydrated. Last time I got a cholestoral test I had no breakfast and above all no usual two large cups of coffee and had a systolic pressure of 96. Wow, 6 more and I would be considered hemodynamically unstable but I knew what it was told the nurse administering the test, went home, took on normal coffee and water load and checked own BP an hour later and it was right back to around 124/78. So although you don't feel as thirsty in the winter you may be blowing away more fluids. I ride to work 26 miles each way and hardly have a desire to drink in the winter because I don't like to stop especially if already sweaty and just don't feel that thirsty. You also may be using more blood sugar as it takes more energy for a bod to stay warm in the winter so eat enough also. Most bikers don't go low on sugar because they are a better guage of that than the most expensive Blood Glucose Meter (Glucometer) on the market.
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Old 12-02-08, 10:40 PM   #4
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Another physiological phenomenon involving cold temperatures, is the effect these temperatures have on hemoglobin in the red blood cells. Hemoglobin is the main transporter of O2 from the lungs to the tissues of the body. When the temperature gets cold, your body obviously gets cold and so does your blood stream. When the hemoglobin gets cold it binds O2 tighter which means that it hordes the O2 instead of dispersing it to your tissues. This restricts the passage of O2 from your blood to your tissues and causes your peripheral to not have adequate oxygen.

What you could be feeling is a lack of O2 to your brain and this makes you feel light headed.

Keep hitting the fluids and dress warm. Also keep taking deep, full breaths. Breathing through your nose slightly resticts your air intake, but the nasopharynx does an excellent job of warming up the air.

Hope that helps.

Last edited by jakewalczak; 12-02-08 at 10:46 PM.
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Old 12-02-08, 10:54 PM   #5
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Well, I am not a doctor. And I will just leave it at that.
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Old 12-03-08, 03:01 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by backatit View Post
I am wondering if anyone else gets dizzy when--or, mostly, after, a cold weather ride. I had forgotten that this happens to me but since the weather has changed I'm reminded. Today was pretty cold in Gotham and when I finished riding, both coming and going, today I was dizzy. I assume that this is just an inner ear thing but I am interested if this happens with others.
it is due the air pressure differential, between outside air vs. inside air of a building.

which is actually a side effect of coming from a cold compressed air environment, where all your muscles, brain tissue, and blood vessel are compressed, and then when you get into a warm environment, the air is expanded, and your body relaxes, and thus releasing the pressure from your blood vessels, then you feel all this rush of the flow, and that's what causes your dizziness.

It can be partially avoided by keeping yourself warm enough, specially the head area.
But that is usually to hot for comfort, to archive a high enough temperature to prevent that effect.
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