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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Super-salty sweat

Old 03-11-12, 04:06 PM
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kyoto now
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Super-salty sweat

I tried performing a search on this, as well as giving Google a try, yet both were inconclusive. I'm just curious, why is my sweat so damn salty? I went on a group ride yesterday and my helmet straps are saturated with salt. During the ride I could taste the sweat dripping down and thought it tasted extremely salty. I eat a diet fairly low in sodium, so I'm not sure what it is. Have any of you encountered this?

(on a side note, I did start to feel cramping in my hamstrings and calves at the end of the ride)
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Old 03-11-12, 04:29 PM
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Happens to everyone. Wash your helmet straps, please.
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Old 03-11-12, 04:39 PM
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thanks for the insight... I'll consider washing them
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Old 03-11-12, 04:42 PM
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The salt is probably normal. As for dripping into your face, consider something like this. Love mine.

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Old 03-11-12, 04:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Silvercivic27 View Post
Wash your helmet straps, please.
I just tried to remove them, and I have no idea how to, haha. The straps look like they're molded into the helmet. It's an '09 Volt
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Old 03-11-12, 04:54 PM
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Wash the whole helmet. (By hand.) (Use mild soap.)
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Old 03-11-12, 04:55 PM
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Just wash them right on the helmet. The cycle of sweat-evaporate-sweat-evaporate leads to salt buildup. This may happen on your jersey or bibs too. There's nothing wrong with you.
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Old 03-11-12, 04:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Silvercivic27 View Post
Just wash them right on the helmet. The cycle of sweat-evaporate-sweat-evaporate leads to salt buildup. This may happen on your jersey or bibs too. There's nothing wrong with you.
Thanks for the reply; my main concern was just the high level of salinity of my sweat; should I consume more electrolytes during (or before) my rides?
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Old 03-11-12, 04:59 PM
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Drink more water.
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Old 03-11-12, 05:17 PM
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Originally Posted by kyoto now View Post
Thanks for the reply; my main concern was just the high level of salinity of my sweat; should I consume more electrolytes during (or before) my rides?
Not necessarily. Everybody's sweat contains salt. I'm still not sure why you think your sweat has more salt than usual unless you've taken it to a lab and tested it against known salt levels in sweat of humans (which I'm sure you haven't done). When the salt absorbs into your helmet straps, and the water evaporates, salt crystals will form. This happens to everyone. The fact that you form salt crystals on your gear does not necessarily mean you need more electrolytes.
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Old 03-11-12, 05:43 PM
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i drink my sweat to reclaim my electrolytes.
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Old 03-11-12, 05:55 PM
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somewhere I have read that....the more fit you become, the less salty your sweat will be.
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Old 03-11-12, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by kyoto now View Post
During the ride I could taste the sweat dripping down and thought it tasted extremely salty.

(on a side note, I did start to feel cramping in my hamstrings and calves at the end of the ride)
You probably aren't taking in enough water
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Old 03-11-12, 07:12 PM
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Ride more.

Worry less.
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Old 03-11-12, 07:25 PM
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Sometimes my sweat doesn't taste like anything. Much of the foods I cook and eat don't have any salt. I sweat excessively, and I drink a lot. How should I know if I'm consuming enough salt though?
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Old 03-11-12, 07:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Rimmer View Post
Sometimes my sweat doesn't taste like anything. Much of the foods I cook and eat don't have any salt. I sweat excessively, and I drink a lot. How should I know if I'm consuming enough salt though?
Your list your location as "US". If you eat like a typical American, you get plenty of salt already.

I never add salt to my foods unless the recipe calls for it. As far as I know, I'm fine.

*adding on* Real foods already have sodium and other minerals, so you shouldn't need to add more unless you're eating horribly. Many restaurants throw salt on their food to "enhance" flavor, not for our health.
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Old 03-11-12, 08:07 PM
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Some long hot summer rides will leave me with small salt deposits all over my arms, face, and legs. Never thought anything of it. Sweat has salt, and sweating a lot means a lot of salt.
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Old 03-11-12, 08:15 PM
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I've always heard (how scientific is that) that bodies change throughout the year and spring has the saltiest sweat.

Seems to be my experience.
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Old 03-11-12, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by BarracksSi View Post
Your list your location as "US". If you eat like a typical American, you get plenty of salt already.
I don't eat an American diet, and I rarely go to restaurants.
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Old 03-11-12, 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted by bikerjp View Post
The salt is probably normal. As for dripping into your face, consider something like this. Love mine.

I can't ride without one now. I did a century last august, and it was a hot one. I never had any issues with sweat in my eyes. I even had a spare one in my jersey pocket, in case the one I had got too saturated and never needed it. My helmet doesn't feel right without it now.
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Old 03-11-12, 10:26 PM
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I noticed before today's ride that I need to wash my straps. I didn't.
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Old 03-11-12, 10:44 PM
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I showered with my helmet last week. It's all minty fresh now.
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Old 03-11-12, 10:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Silvercivic27 View Post
Just wash them right on the helmet. The cycle of sweat-evaporate-sweat-evaporate leads to salt buildup. This may happen on your jersey or bibs too. There's nothing wrong with you.
This. On rides 20+ miles, my helmet straps get stiff with sweat. I'm going to get one of the halo rags that ties around my small head. I'm tired of the the sweat dripping into my eyes and stinging.
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Old 03-11-12, 10:53 PM
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OP, have you never sweated before? Sweat is salty, that is all.
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Old 03-12-12, 12:21 AM
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Originally Posted by kyoto now View Post
I eat a diet fairly low in sodium, so I'm not sure what it is. Have any of you encountered this?

(on a side note, I did start to feel cramping in my hamstrings and calves at the end of the ride)
Just because your diet is low in sodium doesn't mean your body doesn't have sodium(salt). If it didn't, you would be dead. The body regulates the blood's osmolarity in a very tight range. Salt is necessary in your diet, just not too much. low sodium diets are good for keeping hypertension(among other things) in check. I guess the analogy would be, I eat only vegetables, why does my poo stink?
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