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Staying hydrated and cool in the heat.

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Staying hydrated and cool in the heat.

Old 07-29-06, 07:46 PM
  #1  
cruzMOKS
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Staying hydrated and cool in the heat.

What are some of your experiences in dealing with heat when
riding?

I had a ride planned for today but at 6 AM it was already 77
degrees. So I skipped it and slept in and rode later. My ride was
a sight seeing ride and not a training ride. I paid no attention to my
speed.

Riding in the heat I stopped at a lake took my T-shirt off and
dipped in the water then rung it out and put it back on. Later I
poured water out of my water bottle over my shirt when I came
upon a water fountain. Refilling my water bottle after drinking
some I was on the rode again. On the way home I was pouring
water over my head.

There is no satisfaction in drinking hot water. Therefore I was worried that I was not
drinking enough. I only rode 23 miles so the distance was not excessive.
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Old 07-29-06, 07:52 PM
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I ride about ten miles, pull over in the shade, and drink. I force myself to drink a lot of water. Although it may not be as refreshing, there's nothing wrong with drinking warm water. I have to do this quite often, when there's no place to stop, and refill with cold water / ice. I averaged about 90-100 miles a day in the last week, with the temperature in the 90s.
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Old 07-29-06, 08:41 PM
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Don't do what I did today. First I mowed two lawns equal to approximately 1 acre with a push mower (my yard plus one of my rental properties). Then I went out on a training ride with a much younger rider/racer for a 50 mile loop while the temps were still at 94 F and the humidity was sky high. There was a mechanical problem with my main ride (long story), so I was riding my beater bike - a 20 year old Cannondale. I have to say that my Lemond Zurich is a MUCH nicer ride than my old Cannondale except for the Brooks saddle on it that I have been breaking in since 1980. While I thought that I had rehydrated after the nearly three hours of lawn mowing I must have been down a couple of quarts. On our ride I did the lion's share of the pulling at 20 to 21 mph into a 9 mph head wind to get to the hills (for Florida - imagine Interstate overpasses except twice as high), but then I started hurting. After the hills the wind switched around 180 degrees. Bummer! After 35 miles I was seriously hurting from lack of water. I refilled and rode about 10 miles and had to refill both of my bottles again as I was sucking it down as fast as I could. Obviously I made it home, but that was one tough ride mostly because I was not properly hydrating. Perhaps I should have two beers and 4 shots of Jack tonight a la Floyd and have the ride of my life tomorrow!
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Old 07-29-06, 09:31 PM
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Carry an extra bottle in the jersey pocket and use it to spray water on your head and neck every so often. The evaporating is pretty refreshing.......Even the folks riding on your wheel don't mind catching some of the spray!!!
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Old 07-30-06, 04:18 AM
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I don't know what the med manual has to say about it, and my example has its flaws (lost 10 lbs during my 80 miler yesterday), but, I make it a point to ingest some table salt before heading out. Generally, I'll put one teaspoon full into an 8 oz glass, fill with water, stir, drink. That much salt won't suspend in just 8 oz of water, so, there is always a concentration left after downing the water - I refill the glass, stir and drink again.

I learned this from working in a factory during my teen years (it was a meat packing plant, actually). My job was to come in on second shift and clean up the kill and lard rendering area. I used what resembled a fire hose blasting hot water at everything to kill germs and clean the place up. We wore dairy boots that would fill over my ankles with perspiration three times a night.

Until the old geezers (now I'm an old geezer) wised me up to salt (we took tablets back then), I would be truly sick and ready to pass out after the first hour.

Today, there are all manner of sports drinks, etc that are more appetizing (I guess), but, salt is cheap and works for me.

It wasn't over 100 hear (PA) yesterday, but it was hot and I rode in the afternoon. I'm still looking at why I lost so much weight (doesn't sound right to me) - I had plenty to drink - but at no time did I experience the slightest heat-related discomfort.

I sweat profusely - but, I think that is what the body is supposed to do when you exercise in those high temperatures. I am sold on the notion that electrolyte imbalance is our real enemy out in the heat.

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Old 07-30-06, 05:29 AM
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Originally Posted by cruzMOKS
Riding in the heat I stopped at a lake took my T-shirt off and
dipped in the water then rung it out and put it back on. Later I
poured water out of my water bottle over my shirt when I came
upon a water fountain. Refilling my water bottle after drinking
some I was on the rode again. On the way home I was pouring
water over my head.

There is no satisfaction in drinking hot water. Therefore I was worried that I was not
drinking enough. I only rode 23 miles so the distance was not excessive.
There's been a fair amount of research (although I can't point to links off-hand) to the effect that:

1. Water IN you is more important than water ON you

2. Most people can drink more water when it is "room temperature" than when it is cold. Therefore, while drinking ice cold water is satisfying, you can actually get more inside you when it is approximately the same temperature as your surroundings.

It may not be satisfying, but drink, drink, drink. In this weather, I try to get in 24-40ozs per hour.
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Old 07-30-06, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by jppe
Carry an extra bottle in the jersey pocket and use it to spray water on your head and neck every so often. The evaporating is pretty refreshing.......Even the folks riding on your wheel don't mind catching some of the spray!!!
I'd be worried about the water washing off some of my sunscreen. Sounds refreshing though.
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Old 07-30-06, 08:27 AM
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Originally Posted by oilfreeandhappy
I'd be worried about the water washing off some of my sunscreen. Sounds refreshing though.
At this point in the summer I no longer use sunscreen..... I just don't burn. I agree that drinking is more important than dumping water on my head and body..... I do however, soak my coolmax head wrap at every watering hole, wow, does that feel good.
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Old 07-30-06, 08:31 AM
  #9  
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To start with, lose the t shirt. You need to get one of the sport's fabrics, there are dozens now, many cheap. Note: some work much better than others.

Second, you need to replace electrolytes, mostly sodium and potassium. One cheap way is to bring a few fat free pretzels, and you can get a bottle of potassium tablets at Walmart cheap. You can also use sports drinks, of course.

Third, getting your shirt wet is a great idea. I often bring an extra bottle just to spray my head and back.

Fourth, earlier is better. We started yesterday at 6:30 am, and the next time it's
going in the Nineties I am going to try and get us out the door around 5:30.
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Old 07-30-06, 10:58 AM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by late
To start with, lose the t shirt. You need to get one of the sport's fabrics, there are dozens now, many cheap. Note: some work much better than others.

Second, you need to replace electrolytes, mostly sodium and potassium. One cheap way is to bring a few fat free pretzels, and you can get a bottle of potassium tablets at Walmart cheap. You can also use sports drinks, of course.

Third, getting your shirt wet is a great idea. I often bring an extra bottle just to spray my head and back.

Fourth, earlier is better. We started yesterday at 6:30 am, and the next time it's
going in the Nineties I am going to try and get us out the door around 5:30.

Proper wicking cycling tops are a must to staying dry and cool.But then soaking it and cooling you down works aswell. I use a camelback and this has my Isotonic drink in it. I also carry a water bottle with water and this, if not needed for drinking, goes over the head- down the shirt and washes out cuts that I get on the ride.

Energy also comes from Food so don't forget a snack of some kind in the ride.
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Old 07-30-06, 12:11 PM
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I agree with the proper wicking and get more water in you. Hence, on really hot days I'll wear a base layer to wick sweat away. I actually end up feeling cooler than if I just have on a jersey. I also try to drink at least 24 oz every 30 to 40 minutes. Finally, I avoid wearing my dark colored jerseys on hot sunny days.
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Old 07-30-06, 12:17 PM
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These days our daily highs are about 104. I ride in the morning about 0830 for anywhere from 1-3 hours when the temp is in the high 80s to mid 90s. A few keys I've found that help: My Halo headband keeps the sweat out of my eyes. I drink 2 lg bottles per hour or so (the bottles are packed with ice before I start the ride). First bottle is water, next is weak gatorade or accelerade. I have ID'd a few key places to get COLD water. I take a brief break in the shade (2-5 minutes) to refill bottles and soak my head with the cold water.
On longer rides I carry a spare empty polar bottle in my jersey to fill just in case.
Like everyone I seek out shade as much as possible, but there isn't much to be had here.
+1 on the jersey colors. I only wear light colors. I've experimentd with wearing mesh or under armour under my jersey. I think a good jersey alone has been better.

I find that I drink more if the water is cold. Also, I find that I tolerate heat better now than I did in my twenties. Anyone else experience that?
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Old 07-30-06, 12:57 PM
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I go out at 7:30 AM for an hour to two hours and take two water bottles that have spent the night in the freezer. No problems.
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Old 07-30-06, 01:54 PM
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Thanks for the advice.

I do have a jersey, but I thought being wet was good on a 100 degree day.

I need to use salt and get potassium tablets.
I need to research Isotonic drinks, gatorade or accelerade.

I have a couple of coupons for free sports drinks. I'll try them out. One thing I don't like to carry a lock (more weight) which causes me to avoid stores.

The idea of freezing your water bottles sounds good.
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Old 07-30-06, 02:09 PM
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Pre-hydrating is also critical. Keeping fluid levels up the day before big rides is helpful. Also, avoid dehydrating drinks in excess (alcohol & coffee). I have insulated water bottles, but it's a trade-off, as they carry several ounces less fluid than non-insulated. Probably better to get the biggest bottles you can to carry the most fluid, and make sure you get refills.
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Old 07-30-06, 02:21 PM
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++++1 on the pre-hydrating. It's crucial.
I didn't do it today and felt sluggish. Can't forget this stuff!
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Old 07-30-06, 02:52 PM
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I rode a humid century yesterday and we all sweat so much we were soaked from head to toe. My shoes were wet this morning, I think this is the first time that has happened when it wasn't a rain ride. I was only 2 pounds lighter after so I guess I drank enough.
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Old 07-30-06, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by cruzMOKS
I have a couple of coupons for free sports drinks. I'll try them out. One thing I don't like to carry a lock (more weight) which causes me to avoid stores.
I generally take my bike into stores.
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Old 07-30-06, 04:35 PM
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This is directed at those who want to seriously improve their tolerance to heat.
I found that heath tolerance will increase significantly with frequent training.
Yesterday and Today I did 50 miles each in 95 degrees and high humidity. (Illinois)
Fluid consumption was five liter per 50 miles. Two liter was Gatorade. ($3. for two L.)
I did both runs at my top speed.
I do daily training on a trainer at 17 MPH purposely in a room without air-condition.
Last year, before this training, I was not able to do this what I described above.
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Old 07-30-06, 05:49 PM
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Acclimate, Acclimate, Acclimate + Drink, Drink, Drink = heat tolerance

(This from 25+ years' experience in industry where the ambient temp. is always enhanced by proximity to furnaces, distillation columns, etc.)

I, personally, like a bottle of "Sqwincher" electrolyte-replacement and a bottle of plain water on my bike.
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Old 07-30-06, 05:56 PM
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I did 47 miles yesterday and 40 miles today in 90+ degrees. here is my approach, everyone is different:

1) lots of pre-hydration (ends up I usually have to pee about 45 minutes into the ride
2) Night before I take two big Polar water bottles, fill half way and lay them on their side in the freezer (got this idea off a bike blog) before the ride I add either a sports drink or water to fill up, with the ice all the way up the length of the bottle the fluid seems to stay more uniformly cool.
3) Take a regular size bottle and fill with just ice water and but in back pocket of cycling shirt (use this to pore on head and neck)
4) While riding I have found that in the heat I need to drink a 22 ounce bottle every half-hour, so every 5 minutes I take a long sip of water.
5) At my fluid stops ( usually a gas station) I fill up with water and sports drink, grab some ice out of their ice dispenser and pack a bit on the neck as well as put in the water bottles
6) I have to carefully keep the fluid going every 5 minutes or I'll over-heat
7) After the ride I always have a bottle of cold water in my hand for the next 3-4 hours, keep drinking throughout the evening, have a bottle on the nightstand. Game plan here is to get to peeing every hour or so. One downside to this approach is usually am up a couple times during the night to pee.

If I do all of this I can usally ride everyday in hot conditions. Also find I have to eat more while riding during a hot spell.
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Old 07-30-06, 06:54 PM
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I guess there are quite a few different "styles" for keeping cool. In the midwestern US, like Kansas City, it's so humid that pouring water on yourself won't help as much as someone in the southwest. Yesterday, I was already soaking wet with perspiration from 9:00 am to at least 5:30pm.

I just rode 200 miles yesterday, with temps peaking in the high 90s and indexes over 100 degrees. I started at 4:30am and finished at 6:30pm

I would never be able to carry enough water to waste it by "pouring it on body parts." My best case is to always use 2 bottles and a Camelback. I buy big cups of ice and mix my electrolyte drinks in the bottles and fill the 70oz Camelback with straight ice water.

I always start each leg of the ride by drinking the two 22oz bottles by the time they get warm, usually in about 30-40 minutes. It's a lot easier to drink mineral drinks while they are chilled. Then I work straight on through the Camelback.

Just as the Camelback is going empty I know it's time for some solid food and another water/mineral reload. If it were cool out, I could go 100 miles with a single setup - but when index get 100 degrees, I might use all 110oz in less than 40 miles. Yesterday, I cycled through 4 complete Camelbacks and 6 full bottles with electrolyte. In addition to a big roastbeef sandwiche, snack cakes, 5 oranges and some other crap.

I can tell anyone who wants to listen, as long as you use an electrolyte drink that contains both of the main minerals, sodium and potassium - you can go out and just keep shoving water in without distress

I am absolutlely sure that most people's heat related lack of performance is a slow but steady case of dehydration as the day progresses and interest in drinking is lost. If you don't know how to keep your salts right, no matter what - you'll either succomb to heat stress or get sick with digestive problems.
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Old 07-30-06, 07:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Richard Cranium
I just rode 200 miles yesterday, with temps peaking in the high 90s and indexes over 100 degrees. I started at 4:30am and finished at 6:30pm

I am absolutlely sure that most people's heat related lack of performance is a slow but steady case of dehydration as the day progresses and interest in drinking is lost. If you don't know how to keep your salts right, no matter what - you'll either succomb to heat stress or get sick with digestive problems.
Richard:
FWIW, I am impressed.
Will
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Old 07-31-06, 04:37 AM
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hydrate, hydrate , hydrate

I actually enjoy riding in the heat more so than cold weather. My body just seems to acclimate better.
Anything over 80 degrees I take 4 water bottles, one with gatorade/mixture with Mtn Dew,- the other 3 with water. Here in Texas the summers are always very hot from end of june into Sept.. usually over 100 degrees.
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Old 07-31-06, 06:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Richard Cranium
I just rode 200 miles yesterday, with temps peaking in the high 90s and indexes over 100 degrees. I started at 4:30am and finished at 6:30pm
Richard,
My helmet is off to you. That's an incredible ride in that heat, or anytime for that matter! What are you riding? I grew up in St. Louis. What's your route? Congrats!
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