Cycling with Raynaud's

Discussion in 'Training, Fitness and Health' started by Carol C, 5 Dec 2011.

  1. Carol C

    Carol C New Member

    East Yorkshire
    Hi - does anyone else have Raynaud's phenomenon? I'm wearing two pairs of gloves, but my fingers are still going white and numb when I am cycling; same with my feet. Also getting wrist/back of hand pain. Certainly not going to stop cycling so would be pleased if any fellow sufferers can offer constructive advice. Thanks.:bicycle:
  2. ianrauk

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah

    Atop a Ti
    oh dear. I Can imagine it must be horrible living with Raynaud's.
    I do remember a couple of threads a while back discussing it.
    Have a search, see what you can dig up.
  3. ColinJ

    ColinJ It's a puzzle ...

    My sister suffers from it (but doesn't ride a bike) and I tend to get cold extremities but not to quite the same extent.

    I think you need to make sure that the gloves aren't tight and cutting off your circulation.

    The best solution that I've tried is well-fitting silk glove liners and a slightly looser than normal pair of windproof/breathable/waterproof gloves on top.

    Some people swear by Lobster gloves.
  4. summerdays

    summerdays Cycling in the sun Moderator

    Yes ... I suffer ... though not as bad as normal this year due to the mild start to the winter. I'm wearing a pair of Sealskinz winter gloves with a pair of thick liner gloves underneath (silk just didn't do it for me). And two pairs of socks, one of them being Endura thermalite ones in warm hush puppy boots (slightly large to fit in the 2nd pair of socks so I'm not restricting the flow that way). And a buff under my helmet. Together with way more layers on my body than normal cyclists. For me the way to go seems to be to keep the core and the ankles/wrists warm. Onne day recently cycled with a down gillet on under a Altura Nightvision jacket when I was particularly cold and I didn't over heat.

    I've bought loads of gloves over the years ...

    And a hot drink helps - I often take a flash of coffee or herbal drink with me to take to try to warm me up a little.

    That said I'm contemplating looking at medicines to help as I'm sure I end up with some nerve damage in one particular finger every winter, and I may be developing glaucoma (currently under investigation) and they seemed to think the history of Raynaulds was relevant.
  5. Zoiders

    Zoiders New Member

    Ice Station Zebra
    I have tried all combinations of clothing to combat it and I dont think you can stop it as you are still having to huff down cold air which lowers your core temp from the inside and sets off the over blown vasal reaction no matter what you do.

    Simple answer is to treat it like a cold injury in a person who does not have raynauds, it's exactly the same thing - you just get it quicker.

    Stop, get your gloves off and get the circulcation back and then push on as hard as possible to get the core temp back up, this is the only treatment for it I have found, it hurts though and there is no avoiding it if you want to ride all winter.
  6. Dan B

    Dan B Disengaged member

    IIRC according to wikipedia, coffee is contra-indicated because the caffeine acts as a vasoconstrictor. Switch to decaf ;-)

    I've had this since forever and not really found a good solution: it doesn't really matter how many layers of gloves you have if your fingers are already white as there's no heat to keep in. I didn't know until I read up on it recently that vibration can also be a trigger, but now I try to avoid rubbing my hands or anything like that to warn my hands up: instead I wiggle my fingers when I feel it coming on - which kind of helps sometimes maybe sort of
  7. cyberknight

    cyberknight As long as I breathe, I attack.

    Land of confusion
    Make sure your feet and hands start warm as it delays the onset .

    My morning commute is colder than my homeward ride but i am fine as my bike is in the garage and i am warm , coming home i have to spend a few minutes sticking the rack etc back on the bike and my hand s can take up to half an hour to get feeling back into them.

    I am going to experiment with wearing a thin pair of gloves that i can have enough dexterity to stick lights etc on before switching to thicker gloves for the ride.
  8. summerdays

    summerdays Cycling in the sun Moderator

    I have been known to use a common vascodilator but only at the end of the day!!!:thumbsup: It does help ... but my boss wouldn't approve of me using it during the working day.
  9. Asa Post

    Asa Post Small lungs, weak legs

    That would be garlic, I suppose :whistle:
    summerdays likes this.
  10. ColinJ

    ColinJ It's a puzzle ...

    (Cut lengthy Off Topic garlic story ...)

    I love garlic and don't understand why people have such a problem with the smell of it. It's very good for you and it is delicious!
  11. You are certainly not alone Carol, in some circumstances I have seen Mrs TF's hands turn white when it's been 20C! Lingering too long in the freezer isle in a supermarket can also lead to problems.
    When cycling she wears three pairs of gloves if very cold or going slowly including Lobster gloves but nothing really works. I am now of the firm belief that when your exposed skin senses cold air or / and you breathe it in as Zoiders pointed out the reaction begins.
    Only two things really help apart from very good insulating gloves [and in this department I would recommend ski mitts] and that is to have warm hands before you put the gloves on and excercise as hard as possible even if only in short bursts. When you have the opportunity, windmill your arms to force blood back into the extremities. Bizarrely I have the opposite problem and don't need gloves!
    Have a look at these there are others if you google "electrical heated gloves"
  12. Hacienda71

    Hacienda71 Mancunian in self imposed exile in leafy Cheshire

    Wilmslow, Cheshire
    My Dad has it and I remember him being in agony trying to get his hands back to normal from their white state. He did a 30 mile commute for many years on his bike, but he never has found a total solution. I will ask him what was best in his case though.
  13. summerdays

    summerdays Cycling in the sun Moderator

    Err yes .. that would be it .... :whistle:
  14. andyjee86

    andyjee86 New Member

    Reynauds is awful. I've had it since I was about 12, now 25. Though it's only REALLY getting to me now I'm cycling more and the winters here. On Sunday I was wearing 2 pairs of gloves, 2 pairs of socks and a pair of shoe covers and I had a Reynauds attack from the second I hit some wind, which lasted in my feet for the whole ride, and in my hands til I found a cafe with a radiator. It was a 75 mile ride and half way through I got hypothermia, couldn't talk and shivered violently for over an hour in the cafe hugging the radiator, it was an awful experience and I thought I could possibly die (I was wearing Specialized Sub-Zero lobster gloves too!) I'm going out Thursday evening armed with a total of 4 pairs of gloves and a minimum of 3 pairs of socks. These gloves include liners, 2 normal pairs of good quality winter cycling gloves, and finally the Specialized Sub-Zero lobsters. I'm also gonna try squeeze some portable hand warmers down there, but as you can imagine, space is very limited now. I can barely move my fingers with the 4 pairs on, but if it prevents an attack (which, it bloody better do) it'll be worth it. I will report back :-). Good luck to all you Reynaud's cyclists out there, it's only gonna get colder... :-(
  15. OP
    Carol C

    Carol C New Member

    East Yorkshire
    Thanks, would appreciate it - Carol
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