Thursday, July 3, 2014

Summer Riding

Summer riding here in the desert southwest is a challenge.  Even getting out early in the day means it will be hot.  Take my ride yesterday morning for example.  I was on my bike before 5:00 AM and it was still 87 degrees outside! Of course to most people that is very warm.  I actually felt fairly comfortable compared to be ride the previous evening.

I waited until after the sun went down and it was dark outside with the hope that the temperature might be a bit cooler than our 109 degree high for the day.  Yes, it was a bit cooler - only 101 degrees at 8:30 pm. There was also a slight wind blowing.  With the heat radiating from the pavement it actually felt like I was riding into a large hair dryer.  Instead of feeling a slight cooling from the wind rushing past as I rode, it felt hotter than if I was standing still.

I only rode a short distance and was very warm.  What was truly remarkable to me was that when I stopped, the loose fitting shirt I wore settled against my skin and it reminded me of putting on warm clothes straight from the dryer! It was warm against my skin.  I decided that was enough and went in to cool off. Sitting in my chair is when the sweat really started to flow for the next 10 minutes or so as my body cooled itself off.

Sure I know that you can acclimate yourself to extreme weather conditions but I have to say that my growing up in the upper Midwest through cold winters and warm summers conditioned my body one way and these temperatures are challenging that conditioning. In the cold months here, when it gets into the 40's I'm frequently outside without a jacket while those more acclimated to this climate are bundled up in winter coats. I don't mind living here then.  Its now, when most areas are enjoying going out and riding, that I am feeling especially challenged.

I will muddle through and survive these hot temps, but certainly am looking forward to the cooler month of Fall and Winter.

Get on your bikes and RIDE!!!!!!