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Article: Tips for adapting to cold weather

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Article: Tips for adapting to cold weather

Old 11-08-19, 05:11 PM
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Article: Tips for adapting to cold weather

Pretty much the same as hot weather adaptation: Gradual exposure, put up with a little discomfort and shivering to train the body. And something about "brown fat."

"How to Help Your Body Adapt to Colder Weather"
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Old 11-08-19, 05:36 PM
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Adapting to cold is mostly mental as if to say you get used to it and feel a little bit more comfortable....But that adaptation doesn't mean you become immune from frostbite or hypothermia. Adaptation won't prevent frostbite or hypothermia, only proper clothing and nutrition will. I have a lot of experience with cold and every year I look forward to another winter season. My coldest bike rides so far were done in minus 24 degrees Celsius ( minus 11 F ). These types of temps are a threat to your wellbeing, this is no joke, no time to experiment with your gear and clothing. You better have experience in knowing what works and what doesn't.
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Old 11-08-19, 09:34 PM
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shiver several times a day to adapt. also cold showers and less clothes. according to the article which has some Army research in it
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Old 11-09-19, 12:20 AM
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Adapting to cold is mostly mental as if to say you get used to it and feel a little bit more comfortable....But that adaptation doesn't mean you become immune from frostbite or hypothermia. Adaptation won't prevent frostbite or hypothermia, only proper clothing and nutrition will. I have a lot of experience with cold and every year I look forward to another winter season. My coldest bike rides so far were done in minus 24 degrees Celsius ( minus 11 F ). These types of temps are a threat to your wellbeing, this is no joke, no time to experiment with your gear and clothing. You better have experience in knowing what works and what doesn't.
I've enjoyed night skiing (Nordic not alpine) in those kinds of temps. Not just layers, but the right ones in the right order.
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Old 11-09-19, 12:43 AM
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I grew up in Fairbanks and was outdoors a lot in winter, down to -65F. One does adapt. One of my rules was no long johns until it was -11F. That was my breakpoint for blue jeans only. It helped. I have a Caucasian riding buddy who grew up in an igloo on the south side of the Brooks Range. He'd show up for a ride here in a light snow, shorts and no gloves and was not cold. As a kid, he'd swim under the breakup ice on the Kobuk. Now in the PNW, I live in the ambient a lot. When it's cool I'll usually be dressed 1 or 2 layers lighter than most folks. If you start shivering on the bike, get off and do jumping jacks until you start to sweat. No wind chill. Yeah, basically wear less clothes. You'll like winter riding more.
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Old 11-09-19, 05:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
I've enjoyed night skiing (Nordic not alpine) in those kinds of temps. Not just layers, but the right ones in the right order.
Yeah I used to do a lot of XC skiing and snowshoeing but no downhill skiing...I haven't touched my XC skis ever since I started winter biking way back in 2007..
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Old 11-09-19, 05:41 AM
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For me, proper layers---not too heavy (learned the hard way)...and something to break the wind a bit. I listen to my body...my feet and hands are good indicators of how well I've dressed/adapted to the situation.
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Old 11-09-19, 10:51 AM
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Originally Posted by wolfchild View Post
Yeah I used to do a lot of XC skiing and snowshoeing but no downhill skiing...I haven't touched my XC skis ever since I started winter biking way back in 2007..
Ha ha, I haven't gone on a winter weekend bike ride since I got my skis. 🙂
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Old 11-09-19, 12:07 PM
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As with heat adaptation, there are limits to what humans can reasonably endure and survive. These tips are just for us mere mortals and weekend warriors who don't want to be stuck on the indoor trainer all summer and winter, hoping for those perfect spring and autumn days.

And with climate change (cyclical, longterm, not a political statement about human causes) we'll need to adapt. Texas has experienced a sudden shift from a hot late summer to sudden winter conditions with relatively little "normal" autumn weather. When I tried my first morning fast group ride in wintery autumn weather a couple of weekends ago I was miserable and dropped out. The temperature went from 80s-low 90s all week to 37F by Saturday morning. I was layered up, even wore a paper dust/surgical mask to keep my sinuses and throat moist and warm, but it didn't help. I couldn't get warmed up enough to hang with the group, and ended up with a horrific sinus headache that still pops up every few days, going on almost three weeks later. But I was fine for the the next weekend's fast group morning ride. Just took a few more days to adapt.

I've been walking most days, a mile or two, mostly for errands, wearing just enough to be reasonable but not too comfortable. Usually shorts, a wicking fabric t-shirt and a long sleeve shirt or lightweight hoodie, when the temps have been in the 30s-low 40s.

But I'm still not too enthusiastic about early morning fast group rides with temps in the 30s. Today I slept in and will go out this afternoon when the temp is in the 60s. It's supposed to be fun, not a chore.
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