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Thread: Riding in the heat, how do you keep cool?

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    Default Riding in the heat, how do you keep cool?

    So with the National Weather Service publishing a heat advisory map showing 107 today in DC, how do you like to keep cool when riding in our hot and humid summer climate? Water of course, today I'm trying out a bandana I can fill with a gel ice pack, and I'm wearing a white doo-rag under my helmet.
    Last edited by Dewey; 07-03-2018 at 10:38 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dewey View Post
    So with the National Weather Service publishing a heat advisory map showing 107 today in DC, how do you like to keep cool when riding in our hot and humid summer climate? Water of course, today I'm trying out a bandana I can fill with a gel ice pack
    pantyhose filled w/ ice stuffed down the back of the jersey.

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    Many of us cyclists don't look at heat index, as it depends on wind speed. We look at both temperature and humidity level and guess from there. Sometimes as the day go forward, humidity level drop, so late morning seems hotter than the afternoon or at the same temperature.

    Personally, I have been drinking hot decaf while cycling in the past 3 days, and almost don't break a sweat in the first 20 minutes. In the afternoon I use spring water or Vitamin Water, which is $1 in most places.

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=o4v_5Yw00_E

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    Quote Originally Posted by Harry Meatmotor View Post
    pantyhose filled w/ ice stuffed down the back of the jersey.
    Oh my - where's the ELITE button!!??

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    Thanks for that, The Post predicts light breeze coming off the ocean for July 4th, but for the rest of today Phew what a scorcher!

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    I forgot that you you use an eBike. I am a bit surprised that you have a problem with the heat. Do you wear regular clothes? I wear regular sports/running clothes, and not cycling clothes. My secret is breathable shirts($10 each) and shorts($18 each) from Modell's Sports. 100% Polyester shirts are cooler than those made from a mix of Cotton/Polyester. There are many shirts made from 100% Polyester, but many are heat traps. After all, winter clothes are made from Polyester too. These shirts are breathable and almost see-through. To tell how breathable, just hold them up side by side with other types of shirts that has the same color, and compare the light that you see through them(either store lights or the light outside) and buy the ones that are more transparent. Discount stores sell less breathable shirts for $15 to $20 each. A-Shirts are good too. Shirts with a round neck opening like this one are heat traps because you can't unbutton it when it gets hot. If you don't like the colors and styles, K-Mart has similar ones for $18-$20 each. The same is true for shorts, here is one brand I recommend. Modell's Sports is open July 4th from 10-11 AM to 5-6 PM depending on location. See "Store locator" at the top.

    If you are avoiding Polyester shirts because they create static electricity when exposed to UV light, then the solution is to use free and clear detergent. Some say add a fabric softener. I haven't had this issue for years.

    Another secret is secret trails with lots of shade. This one is fully shaded, at least the area between Fairfax Circle, and Annandale. I seldom go south of Annandale. My bike computer shows a drop of 12 degrees when I go through that area, and it's clearly noticeably cooler. As a bonus, it's fully flat. It's part compacted gravel/part paved, but it was no issue with my 25mm semi-slick tires, and even my 23mm road bike with cheap wheels. Not recommended for expensive road wheels though.

    Anyone else has a secret trail that they would like to share?

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    Quote Originally Posted by n18 View Post
    My secret is breathable shirts($10 each) and shorts($18 each) from Modell's Sports. 100% Polyester shirts are cooler than those made from a mix of Cotton/Polyester. There are many shirts made from 100% Polyester, but many are heat traps. After all, winter clothes are made from Polyester too. These shirts are breathable and almost see-through. To tell how breathable, just hold them up side by side with other types of shirts that has the same color, and compare the light that you see through them(either store lights or the light outside) and buy the ones that are more transparent.
    Sounds like a recipe for getting a sunburn through a shirt.

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    I just bought a rash guard off Amazon that’s polyester as I foolishly got a sunburn last week visiting a pool, I hope it’s not a heat trap so thanks for the tip about using free and clear. I usually wear just regular cotton t-shirt and shorts riding in the summer and change into my work clothes after I cool down - I love my desk fan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dewey View Post
    I just bought a rash guard off Amazon thatís polyester as I foolishly got a sunburn last week visiting a pool, I hope itís not a heat trap so thanks for the tip about using free and clear. I usually wear just regular cotton t-shirt and shorts riding in the summer and change into my work clothes after I cool down - I love my desk fan.
    yeah, no, definitely avoid cotton, especially if you're already changing when you get to work. It will absorb your sweat and then you're wearing a wet blanket that's going to hold all your heat next to your body.

    Instead, look for materials labeled 'wicking', which means the fabric is constructed to conduct your sweat away from your body and make it easier to evaporate ó I also usually wear running gear; basketball or soccer shirts might also be worth looking into, depending largely on your style predilections, I would think.

    In addition to the stuff @n18 recommends above, check out Target; most of their stuff isn't terribly expensive to begin with, and they may already be moving toward fall selections by now, which means their summer stuff is or soon will be on clearance. I've gotten summer running shirts and shorts for under $5 on their end-of-season clearance, but even at regular price there's usually stuff for $20 or less.

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    Obviously, the best clothes for cycling are cycling clothes. They are usually a tight fit, so any sweat that develops gets wicked away resulting in a cooling effect. See also: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cycling_jersey

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