Friday, November 7, 2008

Cold racing tip

keep yer knees warm.

knee warmer at least when its 60 degrees or below(you know they look like knickers). gore leg warmers or tights are better.

keeping the core part of the body(mid torso)warm is a good way to elevate body temp., but the wind and elements can cool down moving parts(knees elbow) much more below the reccomended operating tempature for joints.

cartilage tears easier at lower temp as well as muscle strains. its easier than you think. just cause you get warmed up and then go down a long downhill doesn't mean you are warm enough to start hammering on the pedals at the bottom of the hill.

we must fight cold temps with layers of goretex and lycra.

i am not ashamed to say that i sometimes wear a lycra pair of tights then my assos bibs extreme weather tights then my riding shorts. its not bulky and stops the wind/rain/snow completly.

well not on my rear side, so i found out the other day while attemting to ride down wastch for a little ride. all that slush was being kicked up my backside and running down my rain shell jacket. i had an icicle growing like a monkey tail after a while and my seat was frozen numb. i had to get off the street and warm up doing some steep hills to get home.

lessoned learned. warm legs, cold butt. that has never happened just riding in the snow. so either i wear a diaper or get a rear fender to ride my mtb in the street. i think a fender will be more stylish.

hands are another problem in the cold. they get hot riding uphill and freeze on the way down. they can get so cold that pulling on the brakes is almost imposible. then wam!!! you just ate the back of a car.

layers are good agian. i use mitten shells that are waterproof. i can wear fingered liners if i need more warmth. also i have some snowboarding really insulated wind/water proof two finger mittens. i can also wear liners inside of these for long downhills.

are you seeing the repetition here? hot on the long climb up and cold on the long ride down. i know it is time consuming to gear-up at the top of a hill and strip back down at the bottom. but if you have experienced sub-freezing feelings of pain, it is worth it.

booties. i only have neoprene booties. the lycra ones don't do much for me and are a pain to get on and off. neoprene is water resistant and much warmer.

a thin lycra or wool head cap is fine under your helmet. as long as its not to bulky. then you will need the next size up in helmets. not in my case as my big head already maxes out the size limit. must be all those brains(or most likely rocks).

i use my normal sox, but there are warmer and tech-i-er sox out there for your choosing.

for the ladies under garment is at your discretion. i only know how to take it off ya and how good it looks. not too much more as far as wearing it.

on my torso i like layers again. an underarmor long sleeve is a good choice as a base. then combo of arm warmers, lycra "T" or new-tech wool, or both. then your jersey.

can't forget the team colors or sporting all those trendy names that you are not sponsored by. huh? just a private joke.

its a pain, but pack these items on a ride in a small pack and you can switch around depending on temp and up or downhill. some times i use toe straps to tie stuff on my handlebars(i know not stylish, but convient). the temp might change during a ride(i like warmers for that) or a hill or canyon might be windy.

but what do you do on rolling terrain. well i cover the knees good and suffer the colder parts of the ride. usualy light or no gloves and a rain shell unzipped.

theory is good riding tights will wick extra sweat away and the cold wind will cool you as long as the joints stay warm.

personal experience is the best teacher, but hopefuly these hints might help to narrow down the experimenting and save those cold joints. 60 degrees doesn't feel cold, but it is a good starting point for the knees. get them covered!!!

Nudder joke

98-year-old Mother Superior from Ireland was dying.
The nuns gathered around her bed trying to make her last journey comfortable. They tried giving her some warm milk to drink but she refused it.

One of the nuns took the glass back to the kitchen and remembering a bottle of Irish whiskey received as a gift the previous Christmas , she opened it and poured a generous amount into the warm milk. Back at Mother Superior's bed, she held the glass to her lips.
Mother drank a little, then a little more and before they knew it, she had drunk the whole glass down to the last drop.

"Mother," the nuns asked with earnest, "please give us some wisdom before you die."

She raised herself up in bed and said, "Don't sell that cow."