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"B" Safe From the Sun

As days get longer and warmer and you’re spending more time riding and playing outside, be sure to protect yourself from the sun! A few a simple precautions will prevent painful sunburns and reduce your long term risk of skin cancer. You will probably find that if you follow these tips you will also have more energy while riding and feel less fatigued afterwards.

For a detailed discussion of dangers of sun exposure and how to mitigate them, check out this article from The Geeky Cyclist.

The highlights are excerpted here:

Photo by Bryce Boyer

Use appropriate amount of sunscreens. More is better than less. Apply correctly to all exposed skins. Start with SPF 30 and ideally SPF 50. Be sure to cover areas all areas which will be exposed while riding - for example, your lower back might be covered while standing up but exposed if your shirt rides up while you’re on your bike, which can result in a painful red stripe!

Wear proper cycling clothing. Fabrics like lycra and polyester commonly used in cycling kits score well in UPF tests. They act as a physical sunblock to your skins. Darker colored clothes offer better UV protection due to higher UV absorption rates. If you’re riding in lighter clothes you may want to consider wearing sunscreen under your clothes.

Wear sunglasses. They act as a filter to block out the UV rays from reaching your eyes. Cycling sunglasses usually have larger lens to give you maximum protection from the top to sides from the elements.

Choose your riding time wisely. Mornings and evenings are the best time to ride as the UV rays are less intense. Avoid riding during the mid-day if possible.

Stay hydrated. Hydration is important to keep your body going especially if you’re riding hard and during the summer. Aim for at least 500ml of water/sports drink every 45 to 60 minutes.

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