As we are expecting unseasonal heat for the FNB Wine2Whales. Race Doctor Jan Killops from Mediclinic has put together the following steps that can be taken to make sure you cycle safely.
1. Maintain good hydration, start your stage well hydrated and drink to thirst, this is usually easy on day one but can become more difficult as the race continues. A good guide is to make sure you need a bush break at least twice during the stage. Good hydration means that your body will handle the heat better. Additionally avoid alcohol and excessive caffeine prior to race day.
2. Stop, eat and rest frequently in the shade.
3. Wear light coloured loose fitting clothing if possible, the lighter colours absorb less heat.
4. Please wear lots of sunblock and apply it liberally and repeatedly during the day, sunburn will affect your ability to regulate your body temperature.
5. If you have been ill in the week preceding the race, please report to the medical team at the start; pre-race illness is associated with an increased risk of complications, including heat stroke.
6. Pace yourself. Push harder in the cooler parts of the day, while you may feel you need to cycle hard to get out of the heat, it is easier to regulate temperature if you are cycling slower.
7. Certain medical conditions and medications increase your chances of heat stress (ie anti-inflammatory drugs), do not take them. If you are unsure, please consult the medical team at the start .
8. Keep an eye on your partner. If they are struggling to tolerate fluid or food, cramping excessively or behaving differently (swearing less or more than normal), these could be signs of heat illness. Please bring this to the attention of the paramedics on the route and make sure it is safe to continue.
9. Please be assured that the medical and safety representatives are keeping a very close eye on the temperature and the heat stress risk. Your safety is of paramount importance to us. We all want to celebrate a happy healthy finish with you .
We look forward to seeing you. Have a great race!