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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 12-15-08, 12:52 PM   #1
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Stretch Marks and Cold Weather Riding

Okay, so there is no way to put this delicately. I'm fat, and in the course of getting there, I wasted little time, so I have stretch marks to go with my belly. This morning I rode in to work and the temps were -4F(-20C), with like a 20 mph headwind. While that sucked rocks, the point of my post occured when I went to shower.

When I got to the locker room, the skin on my gut was cold to the touch. When I got in the shower, I found that as I warmed up, my stretch marks turned bright red, and began to itch. So here's the question: Is this a normal thing? Did I let my torso get too cold? Any reason to worry about this sort of thing?

I know this isn't a medical forum, but I figured some of you may have similar experiences.
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Old 12-15-08, 01:06 PM   #2
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I us eto have the same issue but not anynore. The skin in th earea is something akin to scar tissue, it has lost it's elasticity. Before I dropped the pounds I used vitaminE oil and it seemed to help. The stretch marks never really go away but they will lessen in colour.
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Old 12-15-08, 01:23 PM   #3
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The stretch marks will not go away, but they will get better and be less apparent as you lose weight. Mine used to itch in similar circumstances. Not at all anymore. It took over 100 pound loss to get there though.
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Old 12-15-08, 10:08 PM   #4
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I don't have stretch marks but I have had some large red/purple swollen areas of skin after a cold ride. They are over my fattest areas. They itch a lot when they are rewarmed. I believe what happens is that the surface blood vessels constrict to keep my core temps up. In leaner areas, the skin is still being warmed from beneath. Where there are thicker fat deposits, the skin is insulated by that underlying fat so it gets even colder.

If the skin returns to a normal color and temperature within an hour after you warm up I believe it should be fine.

My understanding is that the stretch marks are scars which don't have a good blood supply so they will get colder faster than other areas of skin, and they are also probably over fatter areas.
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