Why is it that you’re so wasted after riding in the Cold?

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I wonder why you are so much more wasted riding when it’s cold out than when it’s nice, or even hot, out? Yesterday wasn’t that cold. It was in the lower to mid 40’s most of the ride. We went out for about 3 hours and rode mildly, steady hard. We had a 20 mph average when we got back to the city limits, but my legs were way more tired than in the summer.

Not only am I more tired while I’m riding, but when I get done, I’m way more hungry and tired. I’ve been purposely not taking a hot shower when I get back, because when I do, I get all warm and fussy and have to lay down and take a nap. As long as I stay out of hot water I seem to be way more alert and productive. I don’t get it.

It’s not like I’m out of shape. I think it takes more calories to cool yourself in the summer than to heat yourself in the winter. So, it doesn’t make sense that it’s harder to ride when it’s cool out. Maybe someone has an answer? Maybe the air is more dense and harder to push through?

I thought my hamstrings were sore before, but after I laid tile and crawled around on my knees for a couple days, my hamstrings are wasted riding. Maybe I’ve been too many of this psoas stretches too? I don’t know, but my legs are hurting in places that I’ve never experienced before. I don’t mind it so much, as long as it isn’t in the “normal” places.

Today, I’m going to get the guys started correctly on the shower and wall tiles, then go out with Bill and Catherine and do intervals at 11:30. It will be the first time I’ve done intervals this year. But, I’ve raced so little, I realize I need to do some intensity training, no matter how much I dread it. I’m sure it will be a rude awakening once again. After that, I’m packing up a bag, my bike and driving up to Chicago to Trudi’s mom’s house. It’s about 9 hours. We should get there before midnight.

I still haven’t checked out the weather in Chicago, but I’m betting it is not going to be very warm. I have plenty of clothing and I really don’t need to get in that many miles I guess. We’re only going to be up there until Wednesday and then head back to Kansas. Then maybe Texas, depending on the weather is doing.

There is still a bunch of snow in the ditches, but the roads are pretty clear. It’s that time of the season when there is a lot of differences in fitness. Only 3 of us rode the whole way today.

We always take Bromont out for a jaunt before bedtime, somewhere between 10:30 and midnight. Kukla, one of our kittens, has started going every night. Tonight see disappeared for a bit and when we were walking back she let us know she was climbing the tree and showing off. I don’t meet many cats that like to wander so far away from home.

I got a new Shimano 11 speed rear wheel yesterday. It is the best wheel Shimano has built, at least by just looking at it. It is super light, if you can’t see the scale it reads 659 grams. The took nearly 100 grams off the old one.

I also got a pair of prescription Oakley glasses from Steve Blick. The are progressive lenses and also darken in sunlight. Should be perfect for cross.

This was the front of the Topeka paper yesterday. Man, those NRA guys are shooting themselves in the foot. This Wayne LaPierre guy, the chief executive officer of the NRA, doesn’t even qualify to be a tool. He ranted for a long while about how music, movies, video games and such as the causes for this problems, and how it has nothing to do with the availability of semi automatic weapons. It’s about time for some card carrying NRA members to send those very cards back to where the came from.

11 thoughts on “Why is it that you’re so wasted after riding in the Cold?

  1. velocodger

    Yes, the air is more dense, and that means your lungs work harder,
    as well as having more wind resistance as you ride.
    Just be glad you don’t live in the Central Valley of CA, where all the humidity collects,
    and you have to ride 25 miles to find even the smallest hill.
    I spent a winter in Burgundy in the hills, and what a difference!
    I could actually warm up on the climbs, and the downhills went by so fast I didn’t have time to get cold.
    At least now the days are getting longer…..

  2. Bill

    The first rule, is never say ‘cold’. Say ‘cool’, say ‘crisp’, say ‘brisk’, but never say ‘cold’. Also, commenting on how the breeze sure keeps the mosquitoes down helps take the bite out of the wind.

    In the transition between summer and winter your body goes through changes to work better in cold sort of like switching from coolant to antifreeze. Not sure if your Oakley’s can do that transition for you, but they do look nice. Vaery Manx Missile.

    In cooler weather your body needs to burn more calories to stay warm. The best calories for this is fat. While normal white fat works for this, brown fat works better. Working in cooler temperatures triggers your body to convert you fat reserves from white to brown. This transition takes energy too.

    Regardless, you need to eat more in winter. DMO told me this long ago, “If you don’t force yourself to eat a big meal after a cold race you’ll be dead the next day.” His advice has always held true.

  3. H Luce

    LaPierre is right on the money when he goes after violent video games. Lanza was an addict to these games, playing games constantly where the goal is to kill as many people as possible with automatic weapons. His mother supplied him with these games, with computers, and a large video screen. She took him to a firing range where she taught him to shoot a civilian variant of the same automatic weapons used in the video games – and then had the weapons, ammo, and 30-round magazines stored in a locker in the same area as Lanza’s game setup. That’s bad enough when it’s a normal kid, but Lanza was far from normal, he scared a lot of people in the town where he lived.

    Lt. Col. Dave Grossman, is a retired Army Ranger, West Point psychology professor, and an expert on the psychology of killing. He has testified before the U.S. House and Senate, and his research was cited by the President of the United States in the wake of the Littleton school shootings. He is director of the Warrior Science Group in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and has written Stop Teaching Our Kids to Kill: A Call to Action Against TV, Movie, and Video Game Violence, (Crown/Random, 1999) and On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society (Little, Brown and Co., 1996). LTC Grossman writes:

    ‎”Simply put, we need to work toward “legislation” which outlaws violent video games for children. In July, 2000, the city of Indianapolis passed just such an ordinance, and every other city, country or state in America has the right to do the same. There is no Constitutional “right” to teach children to blow people’s heads off at the local video arcade. And we are very close to being able to do to the media, through “litigation,” what is being done to the tobacco industry, hotting them in the only place they understand–their wallets.

    Most of all, the American people need to be informed. Every parent must be warned of the impact of violent visual media on children, as we would warn them of some rampant carcinogen. Violence is not a game, it is not fun, it is not something that we let children do for entertainment. Violence kills.” http://www.killology.com/print/print_teachkid.htm

  4. Zach

    @H Luce. If only there were some data that could track video game sales, use, and age demographics. Then, we could combine that with data for murders by firearms, and even look further into that subset age demographic and we could show everyone the truth!
    What? It does exist? Oh, and it shows that argument is bs and while video game sales and use are up violence is down especially in the target demographic. They say that to take your attention off the other more obvious and positive correlation of more guns=more shootings=more gun homicides. These things are known, and the NRA knew it when they said it, they just expected (rightly so in some respect) that you would believe it first without checking.
    Do yourself and everyone else a favor by not buying either sides dogmatic tenets, and look it up, you might learn something.

  5. Redzing

    Thanks for all your great commentary, Steve. I also appreciate your comments on gun control.

    I ended up getting into the worst shape of my life this year, for various reasons, and will be reading your blog often next year as I make a comeback into the world of cycling. It’s, by far, the best blog out there about the sport. We may be moving to the Kansas City area for my career, and I hope that I can ride with your group at some point.

  6. Zach

    None of those studies, which were all psychological and trait behavior type studies, (one just a meta analysis of lots of older data) actually takes any of their finding to actual real life data. Im not saying I think violent video games and media of all sorts is great, I think its too much, counterproductive, and unnecessary. I would love for it to be that simple. However, it is simply not causing violent crime, there is no real data on those endpoints that can be even miscontrued to that effect. Any graph of video game consumption tied to violent crimes shows that isnt the case. All violence is going down mind you, and its unlikely its tied to any one thing. We have a culture of violence and seem to be entertained by it, I would love for our exposure to decrease dramatically across all spectrums. The only single variant you can point to in america is the fact it is america and we have more firearms than any other civilized country by a mile.
    The displays of violence you’re seeing among young, entitled, white males is changing, and the data set is too small to attribute much more than a profile to. However, this is an extremely small (though highly publicized) slice of all violence. Even violence/homicide committed in schools is down over the last 20 years, even as the school population has increased. A major asteroid hit is apparently more likely.
    I want to stop this as much as the next person, maybe more. However, I am willing to abandon any strategy that has been shown to be an area that will be uneffective, no matter my personal feelings. Its analogous to where you would spend the most training time, your upstroke or your down stroke. Like the NRA wanting to put those officers in schools where they wont make much of a difference as opposed to where crime happens on a much more predictable frequency.


    good link for video games/country/violence
    this one about school violence/homicide in last 20 years, this had the least impressive data

  7. Zach

    I forgot to mention it is very possible that within a subset of individuals in the US/world, there is a much higher than normal susceptibility to media violence that does increase their likelihood of committing violence. However, there doesnt seem to be such specific and complex data available. We can only make assumptions based on the quality of the data, and right now it seems to just be very broad and general. Our interventions are subject to the same issues.


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