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Fitness Skating and Training Forum Discussions about on-skate and off-skate training, hydration, sports nutrition, weight loss, injuries, sports medicine, and other topics related to training and physical fitness for skaters.

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Old November 19th, 2013, 11:22 PM   #1
ajasen
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Default Cold weather...

In Nov, I reduced my volume to about 1/4 of what I did in the summer months. Partly laziness, partly running out of sunlight.

Despite (or maybe because of) the reduced volume, I'm averaging 1mph slower than before. Some of this feels like technique and fitness, some of it feels psychological. Anyone else have the same reaction to outdoor skating in the cold/twilight? Im on a decent path without leaves and debris, so it's not that.
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Old November 20th, 2013, 02:00 AM   #2
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In Nov, I reduced my volume to about 1/4 of what I did in the summer months. Partly laziness, partly running out of sunlight.

Despite (or maybe because of) the reduced volume, I'm averaging 1mph slower than before. Some of this feels like technique and fitness, some of it feels psychological. Anyone else have the same reaction to outdoor skating in the cold/twilight? Im on a decent path without leaves and debris, so it's not that.
You seem to be discounting the fact that your conditioning is less than it was during the summer. That aside, I assume you are wearing more clothing and don't forget that colder air is more dense. That has to have an effect.

Not sure if the temp change has a measurable detrimental effect on wheels or bearings. I assume it can, but that probably would require much lower temperatures than typical Fall weather. The Fall also tends to be windier but that probably balances out to large degree, unless it's one of those days where the wind is constantly shifting.
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Old November 20th, 2013, 02:21 AM   #3
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I believe it was MR SHELBY wh0 pointed out that urethane loses a certain significant % of its rebound for every 10 of temperature drop, which I expect is the primary cause for your 1 MPH speed drop. At the low 40 degrees level I lost over 10% of my speed on quads.

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Old November 20th, 2013, 03:56 AM   #4
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shrinkage
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Old November 20th, 2013, 06:40 AM   #5
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Yeah its fitness, and my wheels feel stiffer, but there's also the subjective feeling if never quite feeling warmed-up. Maybe my body just needs to acclimate to working in the cold.

It's a bit icky, but it sure beats staying in and not skating. Outdoor ice rink opens next week. Should help toughen up my cold tolerance. :-)
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Old November 20th, 2013, 02:27 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by ajasen View Post
Yeah its fitness, and my wheels feel stiffer, but there's also the subjective feeling if never quite feeling warmed-up. Maybe my body just needs to acclimate to working in the cold.

It's a bit icky, but it sure beats staying in and not skating. Outdoor ice rink opens next week. Should help toughen up my cold tolerance. :-)
A lot of this is attributed to gear and conditions. The cold will have an effect. Last time I went out in cold weather, I was at about the same place you are, and that was only a couple of days after the final warm days (50degF) went away.

Conditioning may also be an issue. Are you cross training? Have you considered another sport, or something you can do inside? I lift a lot of weights and mix in spin bike intervals, plyos, and slide board to stay fit during the off season. Your summer is made during the winter. Also helps fight the bulge of the winter. I usually pack on 5-10 pounds this time of year, partly because of the transition to off-season, but also because of all the bad food that starts around Halloween. I also get Rum Cake for my birthday in a week or two, so I need to spend a lot of time on the bike as a preventative measure.
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Old November 21st, 2013, 12:51 AM   #7
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shrinkage
*ahem*


Yea, in extreme heat or when it's cold, I never perform up to par. Has to do with the blood rushing to other parts of the body to perform heating/cooling tasks. Or so I've been told.


Yes dammit I'm talking about skating...
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Old November 22nd, 2013, 02:15 AM   #8
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yep, in cold weather, i'm just a fraction of my former self.
But all kidding aside, i'd bet the biggest reason as has been stated before, due to loss of rebound in the wheels.
To a lesser extent, i know some cyclists who pay particular attention to making sure they keep their muscles warm with a layer or two, partially so that they function more effectively, and partially to avoid the risk of injury or damage. Sure, the weight will slow you down however nominally, but if you look at it as training with a little added resistance, it might improve you in the long run if you get used to training with the added weight and wind resistance, and even with the sluggish wheels, for that matter.
I know some Kenyans like to run with sweats for that reason, even when they don't need it.
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Old November 22nd, 2013, 12:42 PM   #9
ursle
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yep, in cold weather, i'm just a fraction of my former self.
But all kidding aside, i'd bet the biggest reason as has been stated before, due to loss of rebound in the wheels.
To a lesser extent, i know some cyclists who pay particular attention to making sure they keep their muscles warm with a layer or two, partially so that they function more effectively, and partially to avoid the risk of injury or damage. Sure, the weight will slow you down however nominally, but if you look at it as training with a little added resistance, it might improve you in the long run if you get used to training with the added weight and wind resistance, and even with the sluggish wheels, for that matter.
I know some Kenyans like to run with sweats for that reason, even when they don't need it.
I don't accept that the lack of rebound from the wheel urethane is slowing down the skater, I will accept that the urethane is the wrong durometer for the cold, it no longer absorbs irregularities, it just bounces over them which is slower, just like a bicycle tire with to much air, it's slower then a tire with the correct amount (per the riders weight), urethane doesn't rebound, it absorbs energy, less absorbs less energy.
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Old November 22nd, 2013, 07:03 PM   #10
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One factor is breathing. When the air is cold, the natural response is to breath less deeply. This means less oxygen to the muscles and lower performance. Force yourself to breath deeply and I think you will find that performance kicks back up to something not too far short of summer levels.
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Old November 23rd, 2013, 07:07 PM   #11
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on the subject of breathing in cold weather, in particularly cold conditions, it is recommended by sports physiologists to breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth, to help warm and humidify the air. This may in fact decrease the amount or rate of oxygen being metabolized, so they suggest it might be prudent to decrease mileage as you get used to this new type of breathing. I think they must be referring to very low temps., and i would guess that this would apply mostly in conditions below freezing, and it is more of an issue the more you are puffing.
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Old November 28th, 2013, 04:00 PM   #12
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Default warm up time...

In colder weather I spend a lot more time just warming up. It takes about 4 miles. Old knees just don't perform as well in the cold.
If it is below 60 I wear long tights as it helps.
If you are in an area that really gets cold try using a handkerchief around your neck until you get your core temp up.

I like sunshine better!
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Old November 28th, 2013, 04:05 PM   #13
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Default more on breathing in very cold weather

The coldest I've ever trained in was -12F. That's when I was a runner.
The key is to start our very slow. If your throat feels like it has barb wire in it you are going to heard. What happened is that you've evaporated the moisture from your breathing gear.
Slow it down...
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Old December 8th, 2013, 07:37 AM   #14
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Breathing during the winter is hard for me. We have a lot of wood smoke that hits me wrong. Air quality seems to go down during the winter in general so my times are slower. Never thought about the wheels getting harder but it makes sense. It would also seem they would soften with friction, I don't know tho. Skating in the dark, even with bicycle lights, can get spooky for me even knowing the trail. Summing this up I do skate in the winter but it is not my fun time. Then again there are a lot less folks out there.
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Old December 8th, 2013, 05:20 PM   #15
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I think that any wheel softening with use during cold weather would be very small and extremely localized to the area of urethane at the wheel perimeter (contact patch). Materials like urethane are very poor conductors of heat, and so any load-deflection induced self heating within the urethane at the contact patch would not spread very far into the wheel body. However... heat flow out of the wheel from the contact patch into the cold road surface as well as from the whole wheel surface (into surrounding ambient cold air) would be significant.
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Old December 9th, 2013, 05:53 AM   #16
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I should go over to Harbor Freight and get one of the laser thermometers and take a reading or two just for fun. Then again just skate and enjoy.
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Old December 9th, 2013, 01:35 PM   #17
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Just saying... in cold weather I doubt that wheel self-heating from rolling would get wheels warmed up enough to perform normally. The large bulk of the urethane would remain at ambient cold temperature, and that large amount of urethane and banding is where the rebound comes from.

It would be fun to borrow a camera from our Thermal Lab and get some photos.... but I doubt they'd let one get out of their control. We do a lot of thermal imaging of our products during development and troubleshooting. I've got a new product in development and expect to have brand new circuit boards built and powered up in the next two weeks. Maybe when I take the unit to the Thermal guys I can take it to them on my skates! I'd have to do a couple laps around our campus to get the wheel temps stabilized.

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Old December 10th, 2013, 06:56 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by bjvircks View Post
Just saying... in cold weather I doubt that wheel self-heating from rolling would get wheels warmed up enough to perform normally. The large bulk of the urethane would remain at ambient cold temperature, and that large amount of urethane and banding is where the rebound comes from.

It would be fun to borrow a camera from our Thermal Lab and get some photos.... but I doubt they'd let one get out of their control. We do a lot of thermal imaging of our products during development and troubleshooting. I've got a new product in development and expect to have brand new circuit boards built and powered up in the next two weeks. Maybe when I take the unit to the Thermal guys I can take it to them on my skates! I'd have to do a couple laps around our campus to get the wheel temps stabilized.
That would be cool, so to speak! Like to see the results. Cold weather certainly does mean less grip. Envy the folks in SoCal. Currently we are having 4 degree nights and sub freezing days. I know the folks in Minnesota laugh at this but for us New Mexicans it is cold.
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Old December 10th, 2013, 03:26 PM   #19
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Was just a freezing drizzle and my dog loves it so he mind melded me with the come on lets go face, so I went. He of course loved it and that is all that matters. I was so wrapped up that I was ok, and with the balaklava over my mouth I was not breathing in really cold air. The road was now building up a nice layer of ice so it was a bit tricky but the Atom H2O's did great.

Then came the rain which was a mix of sleet and now it was a bit much for me, however the dog was loving it so I stayed out in it for another two hours. My toes were so cold, made me think of getting those neoprene boot covers.

Ice was on my boots and frame, looked awesome. Big enjoyment being from south Texas where this kind of weather is rare. In fact it is cold temp wise today but the sun is out and really is very pleasant, winter is only a few weeks here.
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Old December 11th, 2013, 05:24 PM   #20
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Was just a freezing drizzle ..The road was now building up a nice layer of ice so it was a bit tricky but the Atom H2O's did great. ...Then came the rain which was a mix of sleet.. Ice was on my boots and frame, looked awesome. .....
I can't even imagine trying to skate in those conditions, let alone enjoy it, and for all those hours too. You're a better man than me, CM. How do you even skate with all that crud on the asphalt? Were you actually rolling or "X-country skiing"?
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