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Going For A Ride? 7 Ways To Fight The Scorching Sun On The Road

Going For A Ride? 7 Ways To Fight The Scorching Sun On The Road

There’s nothing better than a day of riding. Gaining back your freedom. Roaring through the hills or city on that sweet thrill only a good bike can give you. And, along the way, praying that the sun doesn’t try to take advantage of you by mercilessly beating you down.

Well, guess what? Heat exhaustion and heatstroke are deadly. Look up any news article about it and you’ll see that death could’ve been prevented if the victim had been safe (and smart) by preparing.

Here are 7 life-saving tips for fighting the scorching sun.

1. Stay Hydrated

The most important thing here (or really anywhere, at any time of day — doesn’t matter what the weather is) is to stay hydrated. No freakin’ duh.

Yet, you’d be surprised how many times I’ve come across riders who were heavily panting. Hysteria was setting in. They were losing control of their mind — or at the least, had downed the nearest gallon of water they could find. Something as simple as a hydration pack can keep you cool and out of the ICU.

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We’re adults here. Do we really need to be reminded that water is a necessity? You know all those Aboriginal protesters out in North Dakota fighting “the man,” right? Why are they protesting? Because “the man” wants to build an oil pipeline.

This pipeline would destroy water for thousands of people. Imagine living in a home with no water. Ever. At all. You can’t bathe, you can’t wash your dishes, you can’t survive. Period.

Bonus tip: Bring more water than you think you’ll need. I’d rather know I have too much of something I need to survive than wonder if there’s enough.

Stay frosty. Stay thirsty.

2. Don’t Axe The Jacket

Keep your jacket on, man! Think about it: you’re getting rid of your main protection, right? Right. Now that protection’s gone, you’ve also thrown your skin’s defence out the window.

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Think about it: that jacket was the one thing that kept your arms from the sun’s bent-on-destroying-you rays, making it all that much quicker to fry you up. Having the right heat-fighting apparel is grounds for ensuring you have another successful ride notched in your belt.

3. Plan For Weather

Dr. Leigh Vinocur, MD, advises not going out during the hottest time of day: midday. This is mostly mistaken as 12 PM, but actually it’s around 3 PM which is the hottest time of the day. This makes sense — not going out when the sun is in a bad mood and decides to hate everyone.

Going out earlier (near dawn) also gives your body a chance to get use to the heat as the sun slowly starts arching across the sky. Getting your body used to what’s happening is one of the safest bets for keeping your body temperature stable (it’s kind of like figuring out if the water’s fine by slowly making your way in).

4. Plan Your Route

Whether you’re in the city or hitting the countryside, planning your route is a must. You never know when road (or roadside) construction is happening — which means anywhere from ten minutes to thirty (all the way to an hour!) in the burning heat.

Hit the internet with a local search for any ongoing construction on or around your planned route, then execute an alternative. Researching diligently here will pay off in spades when it’s time to rev up and face the music.

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5. Wear a Cooling Vest

You might’ve heard of these awesome vests that keep your body at 59°F as long as you wear them, for as long as two hours in 100+°F weather.

Nobody needs to point out how ludicrously inventive, awesome, and life-saving that is, right?

6. Wear Cooling Gloves

Okay — not cooling gloves exactly, but cooling wraps you wrap around your hand and wear inside your glove. Bam! Instant cooling gloves.

A bonus to this is ensuring the protection of your hands in the event of a tragic disaster where your butt flies off the seat and you’re launched twelve feet in the air or you take a turn too rough and POW! Your hands need to play a role in the quick decision to slow the skid.

Anything can happen out there — that’s why it’s a bonus to have cool wraps to keep your hands chill and also protected. Safe and cold at the same time? Heck yes!

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Plus, they also make them for your neck. Is that a win? Yessir.

7. Keep Your Head On

Take off your helmet and if you crash, guess what’s the first thing to go? That’s right, your head. But that’s not the main reason you should keep your helmet on.

No, the real reason your helmet should remain on at all times is the same as your jacket: to keep you from being exposed to the elements. Winds do their thing and dry your skin out (in hot weather that’s a recipe for heat-stroke, which is no joke — trust me) before you can say Jack Robinson.

Plus, you’re exposing your beautiful skull to the relentless Devil that we call the unforgiving sun. Isn’t the entire point behind going out for a ride, no matter the time of day, mean enjoying the dang ride?

Featured photo credit: he Official Beaune Travel Guide via beaune-tourism.com

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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Featured photo credit: Radu Florin via unsplash.com

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