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First Tour Cut Way Short

Old 08-03-09, 08:58 AM
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First Tour Cut Way Short

Well, I've been planning my first tour for weeks. Just a short little over-nighter not too far from home to try things out. Make sure the tent works, how would my knees manage with the trailer, see which things I thought I needed and don't, things I didn't even think of that I do need.

Yesterday evening, my husband and I went and found a nice place for me to camp for the night so I could get an insanely early start this morning. That went fine. The new tent is good.

I woke up at 4 am to have a leisurely breakfast of granola (lots of almonds and cashews) and a banana. By 4:30, I decided it was more than light enough for me to be out, though I was a bit edgy about the fog.

The first few miles went fine. It was nice and cool. The fog gave a certain beauty to the morning. The trailer was absolutely no problem for me to haul along. My speed might have been down a tiny bit to make sure I didn't strain my knees too much. The fact that we didn't do the wild 17 mph charge off for the first 1 to 3 miles frustrated the dog a bit, but he soon settled down.

Then things went very downhill and very fast. Chaffing. I've never had a problem with it before, but rather suddenly it became a very serious issue. After 16 miles, I had to stop. It was affecting how I rode which WAS starting to make my knees scream since I wasn't able to keep proper form without the irritation getting worse faster.

I finally found a decent place to stop and decided too much damage was done for me to go on. I could barely walk even in cowboy style let alone keep on. I'm quite disappointed. Still, at least it was enough for me to try out the tent and to discover that the things I thought would be an issue aren't so much. Now just to figure out why after some 1000 miles around home this year, I suddenly get my first ever severe case of chaff.
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Old 08-03-09, 09:03 AM
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Are you wearing bibs with Chamois?
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Old 08-03-09, 09:42 AM
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Old 08-03-09, 10:11 AM
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You don't provide enough info in your post, so here are some questions:

1) Are these new shorts?
2) Have you change laundry detergent recently?
3) Have you used a different body soap recently?
4) Anything else change since your normal rides, which had no issues?

Lastly, were you stressed out about this ride?

You body can react to changes in you mental state, so stress could be an issue.
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Old 08-03-09, 10:46 AM
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ahh this is terrible luck and painful as well.your going to need a good medicated powder to calm the soreness down after that good bib shoets with lots of chamois cream.
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Old 08-03-09, 11:04 AM
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Originally Posted by VT_Speed_TR
You don't provide enough info in your post, so here are some questions:

1) Are these new shorts?
2) Have you change laundry detergent recently?
3) Have you used a different body soap recently?
4) Anything else change since your normal rides, which had no issues?

Lastly, were you stressed out about this ride?

You body can react to changes in you mental state, so stress could be an issue.
Same shorts, same detergent, same soap. Nothing's changed that I can think of. My last ride was 40 miles with no problems.

I don't have a chamois pad in my shorts mostly because I ride a recumbent so didn't need the extra saddle padding and haven't had a chaffing issue before. I've just worn unpadded, moisture wicking tights.

I was feeling a bit stressed and had started sweating fairly heavily before the ride as I was trying to get things packed. Not very lady like to admit, but there it is. Sweat never triggered chaffing with me though, which is good since I do a lot of it while I ride.

Maybe it's time for a trip to my LBS to see if I can find something new to fit my Athena figure.
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Old 08-03-09, 01:56 PM
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is this a problem recumbent riders have,on another site one of the lads had the exact same problem ,he also had to stop because of the pain,maybe you need to change to a proper bike.and i don't mean that in a nasty way honest.
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Old 08-03-09, 05:11 PM
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Originally Posted by aenlaasu
Same shorts, same detergent, same soap. Nothing's changed that I can think of. My last ride was 40 miles with no problems.

I don't have a chamois pad in my shorts mostly because I ride a recumbent so didn't need the extra saddle padding and haven't had a chaffing issue before. I've just worn unpadded, moisture wicking tights.

Was the 40 mile ride on a recumbent or upright bicycle?

Was the tour on a recumbent or upright bicycle?
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Old 08-03-09, 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Machka
Was the 40 mile ride on a recumbent or upright bicycle?

Was the tour on a recumbent or upright bicycle?
The 40 miles was on my recumbent. Unfortunately, a DF bike is out of the question thanks to a back injury. I've had my 'bent for 3 years now and I'm still so thrilled with my regained freedom. Even on the days I can barely walk, I can still settle onto my 'bent trike and cycle for 20, 30 or more miles. My legs and stamina decide, not my back. I'd been without cycling for 5 years before discovering 'bents.
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Old 08-04-09, 01:54 PM
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Chafing usually isn't a large issue with recumbents. Since the bent works well for you overall, the challenge seems to be with changing the seat so it will work for you rather than against you- and that will depend on where the chafing is occurring. Try a series of test rides while changing your riding posture; try moving the seat slightly forward or back, change the angle of the seat back, and perhaps even the handlebars to see if that reduces the chafing. In my own case, the stock seat pad on my Gold Rush was too long causing some rubbing on the bottom of my legs. I had the seatpad shortened and it solved the problem.

If you haven't done this already, you might want to post this question on BentRider Online.

Last edited by rnorris; 08-04-09 at 02:02 PM.
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Old 08-04-09, 07:23 PM
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>maybe you need to change to a proper bike

Wow, most helpful comment ever! Heh.
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Old 08-05-09, 05:21 AM
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Originally Posted by aenlaasu
Same shorts, same detergent, same soap. Nothing's changed that I can think of. My last ride was 40 miles with no problems.

I don't have a chamois pad in my shorts mostly because I ride a recumbent so didn't need the extra saddle padding and haven't had a chaffing issue before. I've just worn unpadded, moisture wicking tights.

I was feeling a bit stressed and had started sweating fairly heavily before the ride as I was trying to get things packed. Not very lady like to admit, but there it is. Sweat never triggered chaffing with me though, which is good since I do a lot of it while I ride.

Maybe it's time for a trip to my LBS to see if I can find something new to fit my Athena figure.
I have 2 recumbents (SWB & trike) in addition to various DF bikes. I find it most comfortable to ride the recumbents in loose fitting shorts. Lots of air circulation. The chaffing is being caused by moist skin, so perhaps a hot day in combination with stress about the ride. If your current combo of clothes has been working and the seat position has been working, I wouldn't go and make all kinds of changes. The fact this this has all been working for you for some times means leave it alone.

Give yourself time to heal and then go try it again. Perhaps change shorts mid day or even 3 times if required, so you will have dry clothing next to the skin. Just hang you wet shorts off your bike to dry as you ride.

Finally one last thought after rereading your post, perhaps, oh how does one say this, you picked up something from a dirty bathroom at the campground? It would seem that 16 miles is too short a ride for it to be something about the bike. And you were starting so early I doubt the sun was beating down on you. So perhaps stress, sounds like you were up extra early, perhaps not a good nights sleep, off your usual schedule, may all have lead to this.

Last edited by VT_Speed_TR; 08-05-09 at 05:33 AM.
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Old 08-05-09, 05:59 AM
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Heal well first, possibly with the help of planty of air and Balmex or other zinc oxide based diaper cream worn over night. Then maybe try some lubricant like possibly BodyGlide.
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Old 08-05-09, 07:57 AM
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Sadly, I too just experienced an abbreviated tour. Was to ride from Calgary to Jasper along Icefields Parkway (about 550 miles with return portion), but developed tendinitis on third day so was only able to ride 150 miles. That was a costly development in a couple of ways.
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Old 08-05-09, 08:19 AM
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>wow most helpful comment ever.so what genius plan do you think the op should apply.
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Old 08-05-09, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by VT_Speed_TR
Finally one last thought after rereading your post, perhaps, oh how does one say this, you picked up something from a dirty bathroom at the campground? It would seem that 16 miles is too short a ride for it to be something about the bike. And you were starting so early I doubt the sun was beating down on you. So perhaps stress, sounds like you were up extra early, perhaps not a good nights sleep, off your usual schedule, may all have lead to this.
I wasn't using bathrooms. Just the local collection of bushes with moss covered boulders. I didn't use leaves and looked carefully for poison ivy/oak... which I'm not entirely certain even grows in Sweden.

I'll make a small clothing change and keep my fingers crossed that my next tour goes fine! Might even head out this weekend for an overnighter.
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Old 08-05-09, 04:03 PM
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Had a parking permit that was only good for three days. I cut down a 360 mile ride to
280. Breaking camp early in the morning. I felt like I was walking under water.Thunderstorms
here and there and I did what I could. Still, I was glad I rolled on vacation.
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Old 08-06-09, 10:15 AM
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off the subject

Sorry about the early end to your tour...whish I could help you out but I have no experience with chaffing.

I noticed you said something about annoying your dog. Does that mean you tour with your dog?

Tiff )
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Old 08-06-09, 10:39 AM
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Originally Posted by dogontour
I noticed you said something about annoying your dog. Does that mean you tour with your dog?

Tiff )
Yep. I have a 4 year old Siberian Husky who gets very upset if 'his recumbent trike' goes out the door without him. He loves it. He's covered over 500 miles so far this year, all on his own paws. He's like the Energizer Bunny. I've taken him on runs over 30 miles for 2 days in a row and he'll still wanted to go again on the 3rd day. He's my cycling partner.
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Old 08-06-09, 12:25 PM
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I'm sure you know your needs best, but I'm a Clyde with a back problem cracked lower vertebrae and disc problems, an amputated knee cap, ankle that pronates 15 degree, etc... etc... I bought a recumbent, because post accident circulatory problems really screamed an elevated leg would be better for me. Bought a 4K touring recumbent. Long story short, I am riding an upright bike with perfect comfort. I can't do the big tours like the folks here, but even getting away for 2 weeks I can do a thousand or so miles and am as comfortable one
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Old 08-06-09, 10:25 PM
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Okay, okay...

All you 'proper' bike advocates have made your point. 'Don't share on the touring forum if you ride something different.'

Last edited by aenlaasu; 08-06-09 at 10:30 PM.
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Old 08-08-09, 01:03 AM
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Camping, foggy morning, it sounds like dampness to me. Try the salves suggested by others.
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Old 08-23-09, 03:36 PM
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I've had serious chafing problems before. Usually I try to keep everything dry with baby powder. If the chafing continues and I cannot stop and air out the problem, I use Chamios Butt'r. It is basically a salve that allows the skin to keep rubbing without the skin getting worse. The Buttr also stops the pain of the current chafe, allowing you to keep riding. I always have a container of Buttr with me for even hikes.
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Old 08-24-09, 08:12 PM
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I too had to end my epic bike ride early (perhaps I need to get my nick changed to 2000miles ;(), but due to knee problems. I found that the best way to deal with this is to use it as a learning experience - figure out what went wrong and how you can fix it (so you can get back on the bike and finish next time!). One thing I found that helped with "chafing" on my ride (it wasn't my bum but my chamois made my crotch itch like hell) was Gold Bond powder. You might want to give it a shot, it gives you this nice cool soothing feeling.
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