Meteorologists are predicting an extra warm summer in 2014, and that means many outdoor activities need to be adjusted somewhat. Hazy, hot and humid days can make bike riding uncomfortable. However, if prepared and taking certain cautions, you can ride regardless of the temps.
Here are some commonsense tips to keep in mind and follow to keep your cool and allow you get in that daily spin.
• Lower the amount of time to riding to where you can comfortably stay outside. Make it preferably less than 30 minutes. If you feel that is not enough, break it into two 30 minute segments at different times of the day.
• Avoid the hottest parts of the day which is 11AM to 4PM. This is when the sun’s rays are at their strongest. Try to make an early morning or near dusk jaunt and ride at a slower pace. This is not the season to break speed records.
• Apply sunscreen liberally and often (every two to four hours) even if it claims to last all day. Use a sunscreen of SPF 15 or greater and include it even on overcast days. 80% of the sun’s UV rays can pass right through the clouds.
• Use sunglasses only that contains strong UV protection. Those with 99–100 percent absorption would be the best option.
• Wear a helmet that has ventilation.
• Clothes that cover as much skin as possible is the best bet. Tightly woven natural fabrics provide the best protection. Natural fabrics are breathable with cotton probably the best choice to don for recreational riders.
• Drink lots of water before heading out, during the ride, and after finishing up. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty as you can push the body into a mode of heat exhaustion.
• Pay attention to any subtle changes such as a fever-like sensation. This could be the on-start of heat exhaustion. Increase the intact of fluids immediately and stop riding and rest in the shade. Know when to stop. Heat stroke can be dangerous, so if you don’t recover within 10-20 minutes, be prepared to call 911.
If a flat tire mishap occurs, move to the bike to a shady area. Repair the tire permanently and with no exertion in less than a minute with PatchNRide.