The last time I checked the PAGASA website, the weather forecast for the next few days was that of rain. Because of this, I lamented the fact that I’d be stuck running on the treadmill if I wanted to sneak in some training runs for the week. However, when I woke up yesterday, it was a nice surprise to see that it wasn’t raining anymore! Add to that, the sun was beginning to show itself. As the day progressed, there were no longer any hints of rain, and the sun shone brightly.
I rejoiced (since I wouldn’t have to run on the treadmill 😀 ) and decided to run outdoors after work. I ran a total of 15 miles, with an average pace of 10:13min/mi, really slowing down the last couple of miles. Since the sun was still up when I started my run, I slathered on sunscreen on my face and the rest of my body.
On the topic of sunscreens, I read this interesting article in the April 2008 issue of Runner’s World. According to the article, studies have shown that runners are at an increased risk in developing skin cancers when compared to non-runners. Reasons cited are the following:
- increased sun exposure due to increasing mileage
- depressed immune system due to the stresses of training
- more prone to sunburns since sweat increases the photosensitivity of the skin.
So what should we do? We can learn from 2004 Olympic Marathon medalist Deena Kastor’s plan:
- slather on sunscreen (make sure to use a sunscreen that blocks both UVA and UVB rays –> at least spf 15) before a run
- wear sun-protective clothing
- avoid mid day runs.
Deena Kastor was diagnosed with squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma in 2001.