It's lunchtime, you've been sitting in your "home office" for nearly 4 hours, your children come in every 30 minutes to tell you that they're bored and don't know what to do, your company's spyware has squawked at you multiple times for inactivity - you are ready for a break. Here's the question of the day, to ride or not to ride? You can think of a hundred reasons not to ride, it's already 90 degrees outside and no clouds, I'm tired, didn't sleep well last night, my back hurts, I can ride tomorrow, I'm bored riding the same route over and over again. Sound familiar? We fall into the midsummer slump too. Here are a few tips to get you motivated and out on your bike even if it is 90+ degrees outside.
1. STAY HYDRATED
Our first suggestion is to prehydrate. Just like you would for any good party, pre-hydrating ensures you're at the top of your game before you even start. If you start your ride dehydrated you won't get very far before feeling lightheaded and dizzy.
For hydration during the ride, make sure to add electrolyte powder to your water, keeping your muscles from cramping. It doesn't take long to sweat out those essential minerals.
2. USE ICE
In order to stay cool during the ride, keep a few water bottles in the freezer that are already 1/2 full. When you're ready to ride, pull them out and fill up the other half. You could even place one of the frozen bottles in a jersey pocket to help keep you cool as you ride.
Have you ever seen ice packs stuffed into riders' jerseys and pockets at the pro tour? If they use ice packs on longer rides, so can you. If you start feeling overheated on a ride, and don't already have an ice pack, we suggest making a makeshift ice pack out of what you're already carrying.
This could be one of our merino caps, leg/arm warmer, shirt, etc.. find a convenience store, fill up your makeshift pack with ice, and place it in your pocket or on your upper back under your jersey. You may get wet, but it will help you cool down, reset, and make it home. If you're near a creek, river, or lake, jump on in, as this will help you cool down too.
3. WEAR THE PROPER CLOTHING
In addition to hydrating and keeping cool, it' also important to wear clothing that wicks away moisture and regulates body temperature. Our merino lightweight cap is great for these conditions. It helps manage sweat and regulates body temperature.
We like to get our cap wet before heading out as it helps keep your head cool and sets the tone for the rest of the ride. The visor also helps keep the sun off your face.
4. PICK THE RIGHT ROUTE
A route lined with trees, shade, and a river or lake helps keep the temperature down. Use these routes when possible. If a route like this doesn't exist, make sure to find a route that has places to stop to rehydrate, or find ice. Regardless of the route, you'll want places you can stop to hydrate.
So if you're feeling a little hot and unmotivated, get a frozen water bottle, an ice pack, and a water-soaked merino cap and head on out for a spin in the heat.