Riding in the heat takes a little getting used to. I hope you’ve already started but if you haven’t, pick a few mornings (riding light is around 6 am right now) and start while it’s semi-hot. Get some longer rides in during this time. Longer is determined by your normal distance, no one else’s. Once you are used to that, go try some afternoon rides…but always be careful.
Some things to keep an eye on / things I recommend:
1. Take at least one extra water bottle
2. Ride a familiar route and look for spigots you can tap if necessary
3. Ride with extra cash and don’t be afraid to stop in a 7-11 for a while, have a drink and even a frozen treat
4. Ride with a friend or not-a-friend… point is – ride with someone for extra help and water if needed
5. If you notice salt marks, up your water intake greatly. If you notice you aren’t sweating – stop riding and drink
6. Don’t drink just sports drinks – way too sweet and don’t get me started on the “diet” sports drinks. Include water in your rehydration
7. Pack some energy gels. Cliff Bars are great but hard to chew if you are all cotton-mouthed
9. When you take a break on the ride (in the shade) pour a little water on your head and back.
10. Watch your heart rate. The heat will increase your heart rate so be mindful of it.
11. With all the “unhealthy air” pollution watches this summer, wear your gas mask to prevent injury to your lungs. Yes, it’s hotter to wear one but think of all the cool looks you’ll get from passers by. (Ok, don’t really ride in one. Just had to include it as the air pollution signs that read “unhealthy air” make me sick. It is telling us it’s unhealthy to breathe. It’s also unhealthy to not by the way.