I’ve had a few people ask me about riding in the south of France, people unfamiliar with the region, rides and even custom. So I’ll try to put some advice out every week now that many are coming to ride the roads here.
Here’s the first, inspired by the sight of riders dipping their shoes in a mountain stream a few weeks ago…
Visitors to the Alps sometimes complain of hot feet, a burning sensation that makes them pour water on their feet. It can be so uncomfortable some even stop by passing streams to soak their feet.
The diagnosis is poor circulation. Hot weather can make the feet swell, the constant load on your feet from climbing means veins get a little bit squashed and the lower cadence hampers blood circulation.
Pouring water only makes things worse, it brings temporary relief but will bring more swelling once the feet are dry.
The answer is to loosen your shoes and if you can, to pedal in a lower gear. This should get rid of the feeling.