Cold Water VS Hot Water in your bottle

Discussion in 'Cycling Training' started by K50, Mar 27, 2006.

  1. K50

    K50 New Member

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    I saw a massive debate in the 100 best cycling tips thread a while ago and thought I'd give some insight as to why cold water is not better than warm or hot water...or whatever.

    The arguments for both sides were not very technical, so I'm going to use some basic physics here to say what I think:

    Water at either extreme temperature will obviously not aid you. Too cold, and this can cause your body to go in to a cardiac arrest or whatever, meaning you have a heart attack and die from the severe shock of cold. What happens is that heat is transferred from a warm object to a cooler one. Thus, when you drink really cold water from your water bottle, your body heat (and therefore some energy) is sucked away from your inner core and into the water to equalize the temperature. Not good. If you're running hot (gotta go by feel here, there's no engine temperature gauge!) then cool water will help to keep you cool. (Obviously).

    On the other hand, if the water is too hot, you will burn up your organs...
    If the water is as warm as your body temperature or warmer, it will not help to keep you cool, but will help to stabilize your body temperature. (Good if you are riding in winter!) If you are running hot and drink warm water, this just means you're going to stay warmer and sweat more, thus requiring you to drink alot more. Generally your body temperature goes up when you exercise, so drinking warm water won't aid you by matching your body temperature.

    So the moral here is....Water temperature is not THAT important...unless it's too hot or too cold.

    If you're sweating lots, stick with cooler water. This will help to keep you cool, thus enabling your body to:
    -sweat less,
    -lose less electrolytes, and
    -use less energy trying to keep you cool.

    That's just what I think anyways...maybe it was a useless debate, but I thought it was half-interesting...
     
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  2. Red2000SS

    Red2000SS New Member

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    WTF, this is retarded! - Too cold and this can cause your body to go into cardiac arrest??? Huh?? How cold is cold water? 32.1 *F worst case, most likely in an even insulated water bottle it is a little more than this, but maybe 40* or less - This is not going to give ANYBODY a HEART ATTACK - where the hell did you come up with that??? :confused: :eek:

    Granted drinking liquid Nitrogen could have dire consequences, but you are talking about drinking cold water and heart attacks! :confused:

    Unless you are riding in Anarctica wearing shorts, you are most likely producing more heat than you are losing to the environment. The idea people float about loosing energy because you body has to "heat up" the cold water you drank is total and complete nonsense!

    Oh, and water that is too warm will "burn up your organs" ??? Thanks for the tip...

    I am only going to put hot coffee in my water bottle now so I don't get cardiac arrest from drinking cold water while riding, I suggest everyone else do the same - only not TOO hot coffee, because obviously you will get immediate organ failure...

    I am totally dumbfounded by this post...

     
  3. dm69

    dm69 New Member

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    hardy har har :p. I do however suggest that your body is nearly always trying to cool down while exercising rather than trying to heat up...unless you are riding in rediculously cold conditions. I say go the cold water thats been in your fridge for most rides, chuck a few ice blocks in there if its 40 degrees celcius or over, if its below 5 degrees celcius then put in some warmer water. I say this because water tastes much better cold in the warm weather and vice versa not because of performance:D .

    I do believe temperature would make a difference but not enough to worry about in most cases.

    I do not believe however that you are going into cardiac arrest or organ failure if you dont get the temperature right.
     
  4. K50

    K50 New Member

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    Ladies and gentlemen, I think we've found the forum asshole.

    OK, if taking a cold shower or bath can kill you after exercise in hot weather due to a heart attack or cardiac arrest or whatever the hell it is, drinking cold water surely has a similar negative effect, although possible not fatal. And it doesn't have to be freezing cold to kill you.

    "Sudden immersion in cold water can induce rapid, uncontrolled breathing, cardiac arrest ..." blah blah blah read some damn medical journals if you think I'm retarded.

    Yeah, go ahead and drink coffee, that's exactly what I recommended for everyone, idiot. Because cold water is bad for you and kills you....Seriously.

    Maybe you should read the rest of my post before posting something, dipshit.
     
  5. Synpax

    Synpax New Member

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    Doctor: "I'm sorry ma'am, but there is nothing I can do to help your husband. It seems he drank some water that was too cold and it killed him."

    Ladies and gentlemen, I think we've found the forum moron.
     
  6. Red2000SS

    Red2000SS New Member

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    I did read your entire post before I responded. Yes, I was very sarcastic in my response, only because I couldn't believe what I was reading.

    I apologize if I offended you, but I think a lot of what you said is just plain wrong.

    3/4 of the way down your post you state that "Water temperature is not THAT important" and I would agree with this. However you began your post talking about heart attacks from drinking cold water and "burning up your organs" from drinking water that is too hot, implying that is very important if you don't want to die.

    You also said
    "Sudden immersion in cold water can induce rapid, uncontrolled breathing, cardiac arrest ..." blah blah blah read some damn medical journals if you think I'm retarded.

    I don't think the medical journals were talking about drinking cold water while cycling. I have no doubt that sudden immersion in cold water - as in someone was walking on a frozen lake and fell through the ice could result in rapid uncontrolled breathing and even cardiac arrest, but you phrased it in terms of drinking cold water from a water bottle while cycling - two VERY different scenarios.

    MOST of the time while cycling people are generating excess heat and drinking cold water does not "waste energy" by forcing your body to heat up the cold water - this is a common fallacy I see in the various debates about whether you should drink cold or warm water when cycling.

    I felt your post had a lot of bad information in it, so I responded, admittedly very sarcastically - I don't actually fill my water bottles with hot coffee...

    You managed to call me an asshole, idiot and a dipshit all in the same post when responding to my post. :) This doesn't change the fact the your original post contained some alarmist, incorrect information.
     
  7. MichaelB

    MichaelB New Member

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    I prefer to drink hot water before I leave for cycling because you can store more hot water in your body than if you had drunk cold water.

    When you heat up your blood goes to your skin to cool you and thus there is more capacity to store water in your body. You should note that when you go out on a cold day you will find yourself needing a pee quite soon.

    I think cold water is more pleasant when you are actually warmed up because it cools you down and makes you feel more comfortable. You also have a greater need for fluids by that time and so its not likely you will waste some fluid with it ending up in your bladder as you would if you drank cold water when cold before you ride.
     
  8. K50

    K50 New Member

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    Yeah, in hindsight, I should have just ommitted the first paragraph of what I wrote, it was pretty useless, but the rest was actually valid.

    And I did see that I was a little heavy on profanity, but if I'm going to get attacked just because of one stupid post, I don't really care. I don't have an erase button here to delete my entire post, but it can't be THAT unintelligible. Besides, it wasn't serious, obviously I'm not a doctor, it was just my thoughts.

    Yeah, your body doesn't 'waste energy' warming up cold water, because it's just excess heat energy that's absorbed which lowers your core temperature.

    Anybody that doesn't believe me on really cold water being harmful, maybe you should try it one day in summer when you're on the virge of heat exhaustion and see how you feel, or just ask a doctor...I'm pretty sure it can't be good for you. If immersion is bad even if the water isn't freezing and your temperature isn't that high, then intense exercise on a hot day finished with a bottle of really cold water also cannot be healthy. It's going right from your inside, which affects you just as fast as a shower would.

    For those who still think I'm retarded..
     
  9. K50

    K50 New Member

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    If my post is that moronic, then just don't read it. As I said, I can't delete it... But I thought after seeing probably 30 posts on why you should or shouldn't use hot or cold water in the aforementioned thread, it was maybe worth another look. I also live in a place where the temperature can vary easily by 60 degrees celsius throughout the year, from -30 to +30, so keeping warm or cool can be somewhat of an issue. It goes from damn cold, to pretty hot here, so that's why I looked at it.

    But if all any of you want to read are the lines about 'burning up your organs' and 'cold water kills you' and telling me how dumb I am, then go ahead. I won't make the mistake of saying dumb comments again.
     
  10. Sillyoldtwit

    Sillyoldtwit New Member

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    I couldn't believe what I was reading at first, thought it must have been a joke. Still K50, at least you retracted the wilder elements of your post. In the summer here in Japan I fill my bottle with water just a fraction above freezing and plonk some ice cubes in there just to keep it that way. And I in my 60s (if anyone is going to feel adverse affects it is the elderly cyclist) have suffered no ill effect.
    As for drinking hot drinks, I have drunk scolding hot tea or coffee all my life and I think my internal organs are still functioning OK. At least they were yesterday on my 75 km course in the Japanese mountains.:D

    The only thing I will say, is drink water before you eat a banana when riding.
    God knows why but a dietician told me that a long time ago. Something to do with a banana floating on top of the water I think.;)
     
  11. Synpax

    Synpax New Member

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    Agreed. 100%.
     
  12. K50

    K50 New Member

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    Wow you're sneaky. I'm not going to say anything.
     
  13. Red2000SS

    Red2000SS New Member

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    OK, I think you are giving the guy (K50) too hard of time. This coming from the guy that originally responded to his post - quite negatively in fact!

    He has admitted to the fact that he should have left out the first paragraph of his post which contained the most objectionable material...

    This forum should be about exchanging ideas on cycling training - I admit it - I kind of jumped all over him for some content I just couldn't believe I was reading... For that I apologize, I could have found a more tactful way to respond while still getting my point across.

    I think this topic is a legimate one, perhaps one we can discuss it without so much emotion / flaming! LOL... :)
     
  14. Sillyoldtwit

    Sillyoldtwit New Member

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    Good idea. Let's rename this thread the "I retract what I said" thread. Then everyone can make an outrageous statement or flame someone then retract it.:D

    I think I'm a complete idiot!

    No I don't.;)
     
  15. frenk

    frenk New Member

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    Some years ago I was in the South of Spain, in the middle of nowhere without water. It was super hot.
    We finally found a small restaurant and we asked the owner (a guy about 60 y.o.) for some cold water, if possible with ice.
    The guy gave us the water, but warned us: "Indurain always used to put hot water in his bottle. It goes directly to the heart!" :eek:

    Francesco
     
  16. steve

    steve Administrator
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    myths are funny, cycling happens to be full of them ;)

    My 3 step myth avoidance plan consists of:

    1) Nod
    2) Smile
    3) walk away

    cheers
     
  17. Doctor Morbius

    Doctor Morbius New Member

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    I'll take my chances with the cold water. This is regardless of any science or myths. I'm not drinking hot water after or during a ride unless it's because my bottles have heated up. It's not a preference and given a choice I'll take cold.
     
  18. benkoostra

    benkoostra New Member

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    I don't think it really matters except at the extremes of temerature.
     
  19. jhuskey

    jhuskey Moderator

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    Hmmmmh, I generally don't drink for a while when riding since I hydrate before leaving and by the time I do partake the liquid in my bottle is usually air temperature,or close to it.
    So the initial temperature is irrelevant besides ,once upon a time I was riding and after about twenty mile I reached for my bottle and found nothing there."Damn failing memory"!
    By the conclusion of the ride a yellow snowball and or some slightly tepid Weasel vomit would have been welcome.
    It's not any fun being thirsty.
     
  20. K50

    K50 New Member

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    Thanks guys
     
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