I had to wear a ridiculous number of layers to stay warm this morning in 36 degree weather.

Discussion in 'The Bike Cafe' started by MotownBikeBoy, Nov 16, 2013.

  1. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    I hate always being cold - And I am always cold. Went out at 4 am to ride, temp was 36, calm winds. I left the house wearing a Nike thermal compression shirt, a regular riding jersey, a long sleeved, heavier riding jersey, my new Louis Garneau thermal riding jacket, and a heavy Craftsman orange winter work coat with reflective bands. Should have been baking in all of that - my teeth were chattering a few miles into the ride. So, I went to a 24 hour supercenter and bought a ZeroXposure "puffer vest" and a medium weight ZeroXposure jacket with fleece lining. Well, 7 layers did the trick. Overkill, but welcome to my world.:big-smile:
     
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  2. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    My normal response would be to suggest that you have too many layers on, but I suppose you don't fit in the group that would get that response. I take it you have lousy circulation?
     
  3. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    In my legs, but it just had two procedures to improve that, which it did dramatically. I can't even blame the anemia per se, my blood work has been good for months now, after crashing a bit in the spring. It's one of the side effects of my meds. What surprises me, in a good way, us that, if I use only the high tech fabrics that breathe and wick moisture, I'm not drenched in sweat after a long ride. Not bone dry, but within tolerable limits.
     
  4. Volnix

    Volnix Well-Known Member

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    Did you have breakfast? Or at least some tea? Were you warm when sleeping?

    When I was working in the lovely -17celcius (1.4 F) if I didnt have some tea and-or something to bite in the morning I would freeze for a while.

    In the cold you have to drink and eat alot, like really alot.

    Btw try this:

    A thermal layer, a normal layer like a jumper or shirt (preferably something sporty that wicks moisture out), then a woolen jumper, over that a fleece (the warm one) and over that another layer of soft shell fleece which is both warm and water-wind repellent.

    You can also add a neck scarf or make the woolen jumper a turtle neck one.

    The whole thing is not that onion-bulky but it works great.

    If things get really nasty you can try some of these feather filled jackets.


    Ski and snow jackets are pretty good for cold conditions...
     
  5. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    Breakfast before a workout - usually only if I want to puke. I know, it's bad policy, but I can't eat an hour before any exercise or I throw up. I can tolerate drinking something, will try tea and all of your suggestions. Always cold now, it is the stupid meds. At work right now, I have a hoodie on over my dress shirt and a space heater running under my desk. Say hello to the wonderful world of refractory anemia/myeloid leukemia. I do have the ultimate in warm clothing, one of those Columbia OmniHeat heated coats. Really warm, but not good for exercise because it doesn't breath. And the battery only lasts about 1-2 hours depending on the level of heat the user selects.
     
  6. maydog

    maydog Well-Known Member

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    That is much more than I wear down to single digits.

    Maybe it is more your perception of cold, vs. actually getting cold. I is OK to start a ride a little bit cold as you should acclimate and warm as you go. A side benefit will be that you can active brown fat in the body from cold and boost the metabolism a little.

    Be sure to keep the extremities covered. I couldn't tell if you were covering your bases from the original post. A warm head and neck, hands and feet will go a long way to keeping you feel warmer.

    My winter favorite for the head is good balaclava.

    I try to keep too much bulk off of my torso in cold weather riding. I usually am the most comfortable with a baselayer and one or more long sleeve shirts/jerseys on down to the single digits. If its windy, I may have to throw on a jacket.
     
  7. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    Yes, also had in my winter-grade heaviest Pearl Izumi gloves, UA thermal lined knit cap under helmet, wool mountaineering mid-calf socks, and high top Salomon trail boots (which are great cycling shoes). I had 4 layers on the bottom, compression shorts, Zoic MB shorts, UA thermal sweats, and Pearl Izumi long-legged cycling pants that have a thin fleece lining and are fairly wind resistant. Dressed for Siberia
     
  8. Volnix

    Volnix Well-Known Member

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    Salomon and Columbia make some good stuff. I use some salomon travelling shoes with gore tex when going touring with a bicycle tours office here.

    At the moment its around 15celcious here and I usually go out with a thermal layer, a jersey on top, bibs and track pants over them. (Which kinda saved me on my last spill since I didnt get any road rash on my legs).

    When it goes cold like 2 - 3 Celcious I change the jersey with a woolen jumper over the thermal layer and then a softshell jacket over that which is kinda snug and it holds very well in wind even in rain. In light drizzles its fine but in heavy rain it soaks but it doesnt let water in. I have also a water - wind proof shell but its bulky and it doesnt provide any additional heat insulation...

    Yeah gloves are -really- important. I remember that at some point I was riding in the cold without gloves because I wanted to find -the best ones- [​IMG] and wasnt getting any for a long time having my hands frozed every time I was out. Eventually I got some McKinley wind stopper fleece ones and they are good. They even have some rough surface on the palm for better grip. I got so frozen hands one time I could not turn the key on the door... [​IMG]

    Yeah I know... I have trouble eating in the morning too... My appetite doesnt start until noon usually. But a huge cup of tea with some milk and honey is good and it probably has some calories. You can add a cookie or grain bar something to that too. It does make a difference until noon...
     
  9. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    Volnix, the coldest I have ever been was a few years back, plowing and shoveling snow in an air temperature of about 5 degrees F and winds of 20-25 miles per hour. Even though I was dressed only semi-appropriately, I was out there a long time. When I came in and started to warm up, my hands and feet felt like they were on fire, pre-frostbite. I was shaking and my teeth were literally chattering. It was unpleasant. But it taught me to be more careful.
     
  10. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    That kind of cold doth suck. I've never had it cycling, but once on a mountain I was climbing with a partner I got altitude sickness while tent bound in a storm. The vomiting and inability to keep food down and lack of will to drink water meant that no matter how much crap I had on inside my sleeping bag, I was freezing. It was cold that seemed to penetrate to my bones. Maybe I've missed you saying so, but do you use any adjunct heating devices like battery powered heated insoles or chemical hot packs?
     
  11. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    I bought battery powered heated socks but never tried them. This winter for sure. When I bought the heated Columbia coat, I also bought the boots and gloves. Boots are too bulky for riding but gloves are good. Both heat well, battery life is the real issue. Mountaineering? Wow, I am impressed. I am becoming quite the jock in my old age, but never could do that, deathly afraid of heights. I wish I could conquer that fear, I have faced a lot and gotten through it. Frankly, I would rather die doing something great like riding or falling off a cliff than of leukemia, which is a bad way to go, painful and unpleasant.
     
  12. Volnix

    Volnix Well-Known Member

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    You might also want to avoid (or embrace [​IMG]) the booze. [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    ............and some "warm" music. [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  13. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    You might want to look into heated insoles. There are a few different kinds, so you might find something priced right that you can just slide into your shoes.
     
  14. maydog

    maydog Well-Known Member

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    Maybe a pre-ride warmup in the garage on a trainer would help stave off the cold and maybe carry a thermos of hot chocolate.
     
  15. maydog

    maydog Well-Known Member

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    The biggest bout of hypothermia I had to deal with was on my first serious year of group rides. My brother and law and I participated in the local shop 2 hour ride early in the season. I was familiar with the route and by bro was lagging so I hung back.

    The weather was turning as he was slowing. We were by ourselves when it began to downpour. My bro became cold quickly, but I was feeling fine. With him cold and shivering we made it back to the shop in about half an hour into the deluge. I was still feeling ok, we loaded up the car and blasted the heater.

    After dropping him off, I headed home. That is when I started to react to the cold. By the time I got into the house, I was shaking uncontrollably, so much so I had a hard time speaking. I jumped into the jacuzzi and spent an hour shivering.

    The delayed reaction to cold, is a common occurrence for me. I figure that I must be pretty effective at shunting blood away from the skin in the cold and generating heat during exercise. After stopping, my heat production plummets while at the same time the blood in the skin starts to flow more freely to warm it up - resulting in a drop in core temperature. It happens on most of my colder rides and cold swims (anyone up for a dip in Lake Superior?)

    I commuted to work last Tuesday on a 10 degree morning. I wore a baselayer and two long sleeve shirts, it felt cool upon starting but I was soon adjusted. An hour fifteen minutes later I was at work, my chest, abdomen and legs were bright red and cold to the touch, but I was feeling fine. Not until after showering, changing clothes and running off to a department meeting did I actually feel cold. I got a few quizzical looks as I sat shivering in the room.
     
  16. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    Another thing to consider, MotownBikeBoy, would be the use of liniments (embrocations). I like using them in the cold. They do seem to warm my legs up and keep the temperature a bit. Note however that's a subjective view and not one a scientific one.
     
  17. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    Thnx guys, your kindness means a lot to me. Good news, I don't drink, never did. Couldn't 't now if I wanted to, too many meds. Hot drinks do help, I did that last winter, or I would go to some fast food and get one - I live in deepest Suburbia, I can get food, beverages, supplies on the go while on rides, 24/7, something is always close by and always open.
     
  18. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    Liniment as in menthol/camphor or capsaicin ointments, like Icy Hot? Never heard of that, but I think it makes sense, they do help loosen the muscles, which would help increase bloodflow.
     
  19. alienator

    alienator Well-Known Member

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    I use Tiger Balm which works okay. It's not that hot though. There are certainly some hotter liniments. Icy hot really does nothing. The liniments I'm talking about generally use something like capsaicin. Also, at least in the cycling world liniments are known as embrocations. You can google "embrocations cycling" and get a bunch of links. Most online dealers will have some. Here's a Bicycling Magazine that names a few.
     
  20. MotownBikeBoy

    MotownBikeBoy Active Member

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    Again, I learned something - thanks!
     
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