Monday, July 7, 2008

Beaten down by the Heat

It's been a long time since I've done significant training rides in the heat of the summer. Last summer was occupied by twice weekly visits to the physical therapist office for work on the back injury. So it's been two years since I've ridden in the warmer months here in the Bay Area. Today I probably should have listened to the wife when she said, "Don't you want to go out later this evening when it's cooler?" Yeah, stubborn me thought that a 1:30pm start time from the house would be a good idea.

I was just going down to the end of Croy and back, a quick 44 mile jaunt that takes about two and a quarter hours to get done on a good day. Um, on a good day, not a blazing hot day!
I get within 2 miles of my turnaround point and realize I had sucked down both extra large water bottles. Not good, but not bad. At least I was staying hydrated though it was so hot I could feel the heat reflecting off the road and into my shoes. I've forgotten how much I hate having hot feet (anybody got recommendations for some shoes that cool better than my current pair of Sidi Ergo 2's?).

Back to the story...

I end up getting water at Uvas Canyon Park and it did the trick. Not the best tasting, but it was wet so I wasn't going to complain. After throwing some water on myself and getting completely soaked, I was headed home. Three miles later and I'm completely dry! So much for the cooling effect of the water.

The heat beat me down, but that wasn't the worst. The worst was how my HR wouldn't drop down below 160 even though I was barely putting out any watts. I think it was just so hot that my core temp had risen to a point where it effected my HR. It wasn't going to come down. Even at a few of the last stop lights I was only able to get it to drop into the low 150's. Usually my V-12 engine can get down to around 100 easily at a stop light. Not today.

Back at the safe confines of home, the A/C felt good and it took about 15 minutes to get back to normal. One good thing to take away from the ride was the fact that I actually was sweating once I got off the bike at home. If I had been dehydrated to the point where I wasn't sweating, then I'm sure I'd be in bigger trouble this evening. I think going forward I'll heed the advice of the wife and go out later (or at the break of dawn).


Kimberly (aka. DrKim) said...

Here is an interesting article about heat and training...

Tall & Manley said...

Good article. The point of pouring water on oneself is interesting.