No one needs Tour de France season to love to bicycle in the summer…and during the year! Growing up, my bike was my key to liberty, way before I was old enough to have a car. Since I was ten, I love the idea of taking my bicycle to reach any destination in town and still taking it for a ride with my friends in the country.
Today, if you take your bicycle in the city, you’d better take it also in the countryside regularly, at least to clean up your lungs from pollution. A study recently showed that cyclists absorb four times more fine particles than car drivers in town. This intoxication increases the risks of respiratory and cardiac diseases…
Of course, the more you breathe, the more you are exposed to pollution. The problem is that it is very difficult for cyclists today to avoid pollution, especially during hot days, even in the mountains.
There are certainly some solutions…
What about wearing a mask?
Made out of electrostatic coal, these masks are efficient against certain allergens, some pollutants and a number of bad odors. Actually, a simple cloth worn as a mask can already diminish up to 20% of very fine dust. But this device has a side effect: It forces the cyclist to deepen his breathing. Breathing deeper, he also breathes more particles. Not the ideal…
So, I would like to share a few aromatic tricks with you
- Avoid hyperventilation: ride quietly and breathe through your nose, which filters air better than the mouth. To help your control your cardiac rhythm, and your breathing, try this essential oil mix on your chest before you go: In 5 ml of almond oil, add 3 drops of litsea cubeba (may chang) essential oil and 2 drops of lavendula angustifolia (true lavender). You can also chose to simply put this mix in a vial and smell it regularly.
- Adapt your itinerary! It sounds evident, but it makes a bid difference! Stay away from traffic.
- Avoid riding on hot days.
- Protect your respiratory system with this cleansing and immune stimulant blend: In 5 ml of almond oil, add 3 drops of picea mariana essential oil (black spruce) and 3 drops of citrus lemonum (lemon) essential oil. Massage your chest and your lower back with this blend before you go. You’ll feel energized and protected.
- If you plan a long ride on a hot day, mix both blends: in 10 ml of almond oil, add 3 drops of litsea cubeba, 2 drops of lavendula antustifolia, 3 drops of picea mariana and 3 drops of citrus lemonum.
And do not forget to drink!
Enjoy your ride!