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Kansai Calling


Nov 21, 2006
Yeah I know that little word "Tokyo" gives a subtle hint as to the focal area of this club's activities, :p but is there anyone else out here in Kansai?

Would love to hear from anyone based somewhere around Himeji, Akashi, Kobe, Osaka, Nara, Kyoto and Wakayama.

Hell, I'll even take you if you're from Okayama or Tokushima! :eek:

C'mon don't be shy. :happy:

I am beginning to rediscover being a roadie (the mountains round here are too hardcore and I can't afford to repair my bike after each tumble), but mainly do touring with full kit rather full speed road racing. But whatever your style it would be good to meet up. I will even admit to borrowing my wife's mamachari. :eek:
Ooppss . . .

My apologies Thomas . . . I knew I should have checked the links page first :eek:

Another lesson learned,

Thanks Philip, I have dropped this guy a line and will see what happens, even if nothing does, I like the look of some of his routes.
Yeah I know that little word "Tokyo" gives a subtle hint as to the focal area of this club's activities, :p but is there anyone else out here in Kansai?

Since we actually do have members even in Aomori prefecture, what about launching a TCC Kansai Chapter? :)
I was sorta hoping there would be a few responses from people in the area, perhaps enough to have our own little faction within this community.

I think in this day and age, launching a chapter would initially involve building a website, which is something way beyond my ken. But the idea is certainly sound. Maybe I can do something with the Kancycling guy, Tod.

On a different subject, just got back from a 311metre short, sharp ascent to a local shrine on my road bike, somehow felt more difficult than when I last did it in the rainy season on my mtb.

Maybe it's the heat, maybe I just prefer the mtb riding position, my fitness levels should be OK, how does everyone find the Japanese summer tempertaures? Are there members who simply stop cycling for a couple of months or does everyone just drink more water and take it bit slower? Any tips?
Humidty . . .

I run/jog throughout the year. In my experience, when the humidity peaks my performance drops by around 15 percent - with the same effort required.

I had not thought much about this regarding cycling until 3 weeks ago. I rode 250km over a number of long climbs on a hot, humid Saturday. I experienced the same degradation in performance as with my running.

Tips: you can't beat it - so drink more (not beer) and take it easier.


Blood, Sweat, Tears, Sweat, Sweat & Sweat

I grew up in the middle of a large continent that got very hot and humid come July and August,
yet summer, with its freedoms and exuberance, was my favorite season.

During my 20s and early 30s I lived in the benign climate of the Pacific Northwest
(Portland, OR; Seattle, WA) and that of the Pacific Southwest :) (Vancouver, B.C.);
with the ocean and the mountains beckoning, I loved summer even more.

In my mid 30s I moved to Tokyo, and trapped in a jacket, tie, desk and chair,
I soon came to dread the time of year I had once loved. Even after I started
working at home, summer was still a time of overheated computers,
fungus growing in all the wrong places, and, in a word, suffering.
A suffering that went on for two decades.

Then three years ago I learned to embrace the heat and mushi-mushi.
I found that getting out during the day and moving body so that the
sweat flowed like a river was the way to rediscovering my old love.
Just as with elevation, the body acclimates to working daily in
conditions of high temperature and humidity.

Cycling, for me, is a sure way to keep cool. Moving through the air at a
relatively high speed creates a "wind" that helps to dissipate heat.
Although I sweat like a Muther Fuster, I seldom feel serious heat stress.

Climbing is a different story, particularly if you go all out, or close to
all out (perhaps with the idea of taking a break once over the top).
Cranking up your metabolism to a rate that is sustainable for only
a relatively short duration creates more heat than you can dissipate.
And as speed diminishes, you lose much of the beneficial "wind fan"
effect. As body temperature rises, the brain sends less blood to the
large muscles and more to the skin and extremeties, so it can be cooled faster,
and you start to slog.
15% performance drop


15% sounds a bit high. That would mean a 2:10 marathoner dropping to 2:30.
Does that happen? A 3:00 runner may well drop 3:24 in the heat but
I would guess it was because 1) they weren't acclimated and/or
2) they managed their heat stress/pacing poorly -- ran too fast too soon.
Hi TrufflesEater . . .

Forgive me. My approach has not been exactly text book :)

My 15% number is based on my experience during unaided training runs during peak summer Tokyo temperatures (36 celsius +) and includes additional drink stops. In such conditions I can expect to add 30 mins to a typical 3 hour LSD run along the Tamagawa river. I understand this is not untypical from conversations with Japanese runners.

In comparison (and under race conditions) Jack Daniels (leading US running coach) suggests a runner who has run a marathon in 3:00 hrs in ideal conditions (13 celsius) can expect to add 12.5 mins (6.9%) to their time at 38 celsius or 8.5 mins (4.7%) to their time at 32 celsius*

I have only one experience cycling 250km in peak summer Tokyo temperatures. The door-to-door ride took an additional 45 mins (which includes additional drink stops), an increase of 7.5%. I assume (as you suggest) that the increased airflow on a bicycle improves the ability to evaporate sweat so performance is retarded less than when running (your body does not need to divert as much blood away from muscles for cooling).

However, I have also found breathing more difficult in hot and humid weather when running. I understand that you are not getting as much oxygen per breath as the air is not as dense. In the second half of my bicycle ride I found breathing harder than when running in similar conditions. I am guessing this is because of a greater reliance on higher cadences to avoid muscle fatigue on longer rides that results in greater use of oxygen (aerobic)?



* http://www.teamintraining.org/currentparticipants/training/marathontraining/running
May I add my piece?

Firstly to "TrufflesEater"> Hey Dave, I'm pretty sure that most people I ride with - we've ridden together twice - know me as a stickler for time/distance details.
I usually estimate "ALL" rides at 1hour :20km. ie. A century should take us all about 8 hours; and a 40km ride should be spot on 2 hours...

This does not apply to Philip's under 5-hour century races!

However, the point I want to make is that our last really "hot" day ride on the HANABI tour took us a lot longer than my usual estimate. The truth be told, I was a little bit embarrassed by that.

Not only that, after all that riding in those temperatures, when Marek (livestrong) & Arndt and you, Dave were hauling arse down Arakawa, I had to stop and vomit!
None of the water I drank that day made it into my system - I was suffering from sever heat-stroke.

>Philip: If you only drop by 15%, count yourself lucky!
I felt I was down by about 20-30% - Really tough.
That said, if you can still manage 250km in that heat... That's awesome!

Don't feel too bad about it;)
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