Hypothetical: Would you wear a mask?

My company has offices in PA. That state has just announced that certain employers can begin returning to the office providing a set of requirements are met. One of the requirements is that they wear a mask while in the office…no exceptions. Note: most medical professionals agree that non-surgical face coverings are not effective at preventing the wearer from getting the virus…but they ARE effective at preventing you a carrier from spreading droplets to others. So it doesn’t necessarily need to be an N-95 mask, just a covering over the mouth and nose. For cycling, a neck gaiter that can be pulled up probably accomplishes the same thing. For reference: https://www.velonews.com/news/explainer-should-i-wear-a-mask-while-riding/

OK, I know this is a silly hypothetical…but for fun let’s say RAGBRAI decided to take a similar tack. Imagine for a moment an announcement something like: “RAGBRAI can proceed, but in addition to existing requirements (like wearing helmets), riders will be required to adhere to standards including wearing a facemask at all times during the ride and when in pass-through towns. NO EXCEPTIONS, and this will be strictly enforced.”

I’m not inviting a debate as to whether or not this is practical, possible, feasible, or enforcible. I’m posing this as a purely hypothetical question to see how other RAGBRAI riders feel.

So, the question is…would you still do RAGBRAI if you had to wear a mask? Would be tough on a really hot day, but a side benefit would be far fewer nose sunburns and badly chapped lips. I have been thinking about this, and for me…I WOULD.

12 Replies

Sandaltan ., April 18, 2020 at 11:38 am

Only at Halloween and Mardi Gras. No, I would not wear a mast on RAGBRAI.

RIDE RIGHT

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hnschipper, April 18, 2020 at 11:58 am

If the risk were high enough that masks were required, I would stay home.

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Niles, April 18, 2020 at 12:24 pm

Ditto

If the risk were high enough that masks were required, I would stay home.

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mootsman, April 18, 2020 at 5:33 pm

I wonder how many suggesting masks have ever done RAGBRAI before or any cycling tour. The difficulty participating in a cardio intensive sport with those is a problem in terms of air flow. Add the sweat from a hot Iowa summer, makes it even worse.

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Jboz, April 18, 2020 at 7:04 pm

I wonder how many suggesting masks have ever done RAGBRAI before or any cycling tour. The difficulty participating in a cardio intensive sport with those is a problem in terms of air flow. Add the sweat from a hot Iowa summer, makes it even worse.

That’s probably a valid point. I still have my winter cycling brain engaged. Maybe not too bad early on a cool morning, but 95 degrees and humid could be a real pain.

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Danny Edens, April 18, 2020 at 7:46 pm

Simple answer is no. Mainly because I think Ragbrai® will be canceled and rightfully so… I think you would almost suffocate in the heat with a mask on. I give Ragbrai® A 1% chance of happening. Even if it did happen I’d be weary of participating. I’m using this year as opportunity to go to a kayak event that always conflicts with Ragbrai® it would be much easier to wear a mask on that event if need be. I’m afraid to say that I think most all events will be canceled through summer probably fall. Hell theres even i’d say about a 10% there could be issues with Ragbrai® 2021. Hope I’m wrong. I’m giving my kayak event about a 30% chance of happening. Much smaller easier to social distance etc.

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SFC JKL 2, April 20, 2020 at 12:25 am

No chance. Not wearing one at work. Not wearing one on the bike.

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Amanda, April 20, 2020 at 9:29 am

It would be extremely hard to ride with one on but I do have 2 masks that I wear to the grocery store now. One has a bike on it and the other is Princess themed.

I would be very surprised if RAGBRAI is held. Especially since yesterday’s highest confirmed cases in Iowa was 389.

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gas gas, April 20, 2020 at 10:12 am

Training with a mask to improve lung capacity has been a ” thing ” for a few years . These masks are different than a mask meant to protect the spreading of germs / virus . https://www.mobstub.com/d/Breathing-Resistance-Training-Mask-for-Sports-and-Workout

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NYCHighwheeler Ferguson, April 21, 2020 at 10:03 am

I want to say I would do the ride wearing a mask, funny hat, or whatever. However, I work in the building trades, and have spent many long days wearing an N95 mask, or a M3 canister respirator.
It sucks. They are uncomfortable, hot, and restrict breathing, even if you are just painting or sanding. Forget about riding up a long hill. It is difficult to talk to others, especially if you are trying to project your voice. wearing glasses with a mask presents it’s own set of issues. I also find that when you wear one for long periods, especially in a dusty or dirty environment, you get acne, ingrown hairs, and it is hard on your sinuses, throat, etc.

And worst of all, you can’t eat pie through a mask!

Edit: I would also note that almost no one wears their mask correctly. If there are ANY gaps under the chin, around the nose, or anywhere else, you might as well have just drawn a picture of a mask with a pen, Wile E. Coyote style.

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T. Gap Woo, April 21, 2020 at 3:07 pm

And worst of all, you can’t eat pie through a mask!

For all of the health and safety reasons given throughout these forum threads, I’m relieved that Ragbrai is cancelled.

No pie? No Beekmans? No pork chops? No beer gardens? Horrors 😱!

If Ragbrai wasn’t cancelled, but instead proceeded and required masks, I wouldn’t go!!!

See you along the I-O-Way in 2021.

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Michael Rissman, April 21, 2020 at 9:44 pm

I agree with SFC , no dice. I’m disappointed.

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