Its been a scorcher, and we know that means less miles and more work to keep cool. Follow these tips to keep you going and cool all summer.
- Lower the tire pressure in your tires. Air expands in the heat, so even though you gauge in your garage reads 60psi, as soon as you hit that hot pavement its going to jump up. Let 5-10psi out of your tires before hitting the road on a hot day.
- Drink water before, during, and after your ride. The rule of thumb is if you feel thirsty, you’re already dehydrated. Be sure to drink at least one glass of water before you hit the road, and keep drinking throughout your ride. Click here for some great hydration ideas.
- Ride early in the morning or later at night. With a good light set illuminating the way, you can be up early before the heat, or out late after the sun goes down.
- Keep cool! Pour water over your head and through your helmet before you ride, and throughout if you get hot again, to keep cool. Or, take a bandana and soak it in cold water before you leave. Wrap it around you head for all day heat relief.
- Dress appropiately. A lot of people like to strip down to as little as possible in the heat, and while this may seem enticing it can be dangerous. Any skin that is uncovered on your ride is easily succeptible to sunburn, and while sunscreen will do the trick you’ll need to be careful to re-apply often, and to get a good sweatproof and waterproof sunscreen like Coppertone Sport. The best thing to do though, is to cover yourself in lightweight clothes that protect your skin from the suns rays. You’ll still have to lotion up any skin that isn’t covered, but there will be less of it.
- Switch to panniers or a back rack. If you usually tote around a backpack filled with whatever you need for your destination, try using a pannier and backrack instead. By keeping your back open you’ll stay cool longer and won’t have a sweat spot on your back. Also there is a great sense of freedom in letting your bike carry the load instead of you!
- Leave extra time. The heat is going to slow you down, so be sure to leave a little extra time to complete your ride. Riding in the heat is an endeavor by itself, so there is no need to have to push yourself extra to get home on time.