Wear Your Sunscreen

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I don’t need to be giving any TIPS on this, but as a reminder for all of us cyclists who spend hours out on the open road in the sun, PLEASE USE SUNSCREEN! As a wake up call, here’s an article about David Canada and his melanoma taking a turn for the worse.  And it doesn’t just happened to him.  Backstedt and Neben are some other notable names who have been affected:

While riders such Magnus Backstedt and world time trial champion Amber Neben caught the aggressive form of skin cancer in its early stages, the Fuji-Servetto rider is being forced to postpone his 2009 debut after undergoing more aggressive treatment.

We often neglect this because we head out early in the morning when the sun hasn’t risen yet.  Then by 10 or 11am it’s scorching outside.  During the hot Aussie summers, I always carry a small tube of sunscreen in my back pocket (you know – the 35ml ones that are the size of a gel pack).    You all know it doesn’t even need to be warm out for the sun to have disastrous effects to your skin.   I’ve been burned to a crisp in 12 degrees C before.

Sunscreens have an SPF rating that tells you how long you can be in the sun before you burn. Here’s an easy way to remember what the SPF means – you can stay in the sun that many times longer and have the same effect.  For example, an SPF rating of 8 means it would take you 8 times longer to burn than if you had no sunscreen.   10k runners can get away with SPF 8.  With how long you are on the road, use SPF 30.

Do I sound like your Mother?