Coach John Hughes‘ article last week, What Electrolytes Do You Really Need?, which focused on hydration management during this long, hot summer we’re having in North America, reminded me of two things: 1) A recent suggestion for a Quick Tips item on keeping drinks cold , and 2) a slew of reader tips on the topic from another long, hot summer a couple years back.
All the tips still (sorry) hold water, so as the summer broils on, maybe these can help you.
Scott Douglass wrote: “To keep a hydration bottle cold during a ride, fill it the night before about 1/4 of the way full with your regular drink mix and freeze it overnight. The next day before your ride complete the fill with your sports drink. No need to add ice. As the frozen part melts, it does not dilute the drink.
fokahykex wrote: “Here in Central Texas, we have had 30+ days of over 100 degrees so far this year. I ride with a 2-liter Camelback, which I fillwith ice cubes and then top up with water. I also carry one Camelback insulated bottle that has been in the freezer overnight and a 2nd bottle with my sports drink. Generally, this combination is good for a 3-4 hour ride – starting at about 0700 hrs. If the humidity if high, then a bit less. The frozen bottle is good for 2-3 hours before it is lukewarm. I also take potassium, calcium and magnesium supplements to assist in electrolyte maintenance. . . . I do use a post-ride drink, and usually push fluids after a ride. I do know riders who will empty a Camelback in a 10-mile ride – point being: KNOW YOUR OWN HEAT AND HYDRATION TOLERANCES. Keep on riding safely!”
grandbob wrote: “In hot weather I don’t sweat…I leak! Looking for ways to keep hydrated I found that I can keep my water bottles cool for the longest period of time by using the same evaporation method that air conditioners use in dry climates. I put an old cycling sock over my Polartec bottle and soak it with water. I’m careful not to soak it too much or it will drip on to the bike frame. The evaporation of water from the sock will keep a 20 ounce bottle cool for about an hour. This method is a little bit off-beat, and not so ‘cool,’ but it works!”
bikerider4evr wrote: “When discussing how to keep drinks cool, you didn’t mention insulated bottles. I use Camelbak’s Podium Chill bottles and find they do a good job of keeping my drinks cool (not cold, though) for a couple hours on hot summer days (I live in the Washington, DC, area, where it can get very hot). I usually buy cold water or a sports drink about halfway through my four-hour group ride on Saturdays, thus I have cool hydration for the whole ride. If RBR hasn’t already tested insulated bottles, that would be an interesting and informative story for readers.”
We’ve actually reviewed several insulated bottles. Have a look: https://www.roadbikerider.com/product-reviews/stuff-that-goes-on-bikes/water-bottles-hydration
stephen.j.vogel wrote: “This summer has been very hot in DC. In addition, the local weatherman has said that he hasn’t seen this much water moisture in the atmosphere here since the early 1990s. I’ve always had problems with cramps riding in DC’s hot, humid weather. Along came John Hughes‘ eArticles on hydration. I calculated my sweat rate, compensated for my sodium loss by adding NUUN tablets to my sports drink based on his tables and haven’t cramped since. I know I am among many riders who have developed their own rules of thumb on managing hydration that aren’t grounded in science. No mas! Hats off to John Hughes.”
wgress wrote: “I cycled in Phoenix for over 15 years and found I could keep water cool for 4-5 hours by freezing my CamelBak bladder in the horizontal position. Depending on how hot I expected it to be, freezing up to about 1/2 of a 100-oz. bladder allowed for cool water for a 60-mile ride in the summer. It’s good to blow out the tube to prevent water from freezing in it, and also it fills the rest of the bladder with air so the walls don’t stick to the ice.”
Add your own Comments on hydration management below the Newsletter version of this article.