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Old 07-06-11, 04:03 PM   #1
fjs
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sun problems

docs don't have much advice for this problem other than 'stay out of the sun.' so i wonder if there are others out there who struggle with sun exposure and how you may deal with it. forum members will understand that getting off the bike isn't much of a solution.

sunburn isn't the problem. i use a sunscreen with titanium dioxide and zinc oxide. it sets up like dry wall mud! but it works fine. when i wash it off, i have neither burn nor tan, can't really tell i've been outside at all. except!!--on the tops of my lower thighs i break out in a rash. i've read the stuff about photo allergy and light-induced eczema, and it is probably one of those. it goes away on its own after a couple of days and is not much aided by antihistamine or hydro cordisone cream. it doesn't itch and is not painful. looks like hives more than anything else i've run into.

i live in the u.p. of michigan, a few miles from lake superior, hardly the sun belt. do any of the rest of you struggle with anything like this. i'm not about to take up something else. i'm up to over 150 miles a week now, deep in the season, and i really need to find some way of coping with this. thanks.
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Old 07-06-11, 04:24 PM   #2
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I'd probably ride in knickers were I in your predicament. Find some lightweight ones and try them out.

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Old 07-06-11, 04:38 PM   #3
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You might try a different variety of sunscreen.
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Old 07-06-11, 06:51 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fjs View Post
docs don't have much advice for this problem...
Are these docs GPs or dermatologists?
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Old 07-06-11, 06:55 PM   #5
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http://www.trisports.com/desoto-legcoolers.html
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Old 07-06-11, 07:08 PM   #6
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I'm going with gcottay and suggest trying different types of sun screen as this one is giving you some unwanted side effects. I don't know where you live, but here in Florida, it's pretty much always sunny. I use Coppertone Sport SPF30 Broad Spectrum spray on sunscreen and it works great. It doesn't leave an oily film on your skin and doesn't come off with perspiration. It's also waterproof There are others out there that my work for you.
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Old 07-06-11, 07:21 PM   #7
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I've found a simple bandanna to be effective and versatile in keeping the sun off of me. My zinc oxide that I use for my nose does not seem to dry very easily, I've never had a rash of any kind from it. I bought it a food store, I don't have the name with me, sorry. But you may wish to find another version from what zinc you have.
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Old 07-06-11, 08:05 PM   #8
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I use coconut oil and Livestrong sunscreen. I don't get the skin irritation that you have so it may be no help... Just sayin the Livestrong brand is zinc oxide and supposedly some pretty good stuff.
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Old 07-06-11, 08:20 PM   #9
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Ride early in the morning when the sun is low on the horizon and temperatures are correspondingly lower. That's what a lot of us do here in the good ol' Deep South.
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Old 07-06-11, 10:18 PM   #10
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Vanicream
http://www.google.com/products/catal...d=0CIUBEPMCMAI
Been using it for 5 years+. I have very sensitive skin and have had a lot of pre-cancerous spots taken off my face. This stuff has stopped that. Doesn't burn your eyes; doesn't come off with sweat and lasts a long time. Used it for 200's without reapplication. No sunburn. Not even a hint of redness.
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Old 07-07-11, 07:17 AM   #11
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thanks for feedback on this. a few responses. i've tried a whole lot of different kinds of sunscreens to little effect as far as relief is concerned. yes, both a dermatologist and my family practice guy. i've been treated for precancerous spots, so have had lots of advice about different screens--the titanium and zinc formulas are the least chemical and least likely to be the source of the reaction. i do try to ride early and that helps, but yesterday i did 80 miles, started at 6:20 and was done about 12:30, so the sun was pretty high by then. centuries are worse. i've done 2 this year. 7:00 starts, i finish about 2:00. i have also been using the trainer more than i would like for this time of year. i've been doing 25 mile rides in front of the tdf. good inspiration and far fewer crashes for me than they have been having . for now i've ordered a pair of knickers and hope they don't drag over my knees. i have another century on the 16th, so i'll give them a good try.

interesting that no one else seems to get a reaction like this. i have sensed that it is something unusual. my family doc (also a personal friend and a good athlete) said he wouldn't know what to make of it when i described it to him because i wasn't experiencing it at the time. so we happened to be going out to dinner once in the last year when i had exercised and was broken out. i showed it to him and he was just baffled. as far as getting a dermatologist to see this, i have little hope. i see a doc in a large practice and even to see a nurse practitioner can take a couple of weeks. and it's 100 miles away.

thanks for the recommendation on the leg coolers too. are they flexible? i may try them too depending on how the knickers work out. thanks to everyone.
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Old 07-07-11, 08:32 AM   #12
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I don't know your skin type but maybe allowing yourself to tan a little would help(if you do tan at all). It is a natural defense. I'm not saying not to use sunscreen but maybe slowly back down on the SPF as you go?

Also maybe you are allergic to something in that particular sunscreen.

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Old 07-07-11, 09:13 AM   #13
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thanks for the recommendation on the leg coolers too. are they flexible? i may try them too depending on how the knickers work out. thanks to everyone.
I just learned about the leg coolers a couple weeks ago from another BF'er. I love them! Up close they look like really heavy stockings, and are sort of transparent. They are a thin, elastic mesh, and flexibility is not issue. I will be using them from now on for any summer rides that occur mid-day. I bought the black ones, of course, since the white ones would look like hell as soon as you bumped the chainring.
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Old 07-07-11, 09:04 PM   #14
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The only hives I ever had was back in high school when my mom changed the soap in my shower to deodorant soap. Whenever I exercised my entire torso became a mass of itchy hives. Deodorant soap is easy to avoid; sunlight would be a bit tougher to get away from. You could always spend October through June here in the Willamette Valley. We aren't bothered by sunshine much during those months.

Good luck getting relief.
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Old 07-10-11, 10:50 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shimagnolo View Post
I've got PI arm shields for riding in northern NM and I really like them. I'd go with the leg cooler, and arm coolers to limit sun exposure if I were you. As long as you're above about 10 mph, evaporative cooling keeps you comfortable. Below that, as on climbs, I have to roll my arm shields down.

Good luck finding a solution!

Update: Is it possible that you are allergic to the polymeric band around the inside bottom of your shorts? Most shorts have some kind of polymeric material applied around the inside edge to keep shorts from riding up. Just a thought, but it makes more sense than just having photo sensitivity on your legs, and no where else.

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Old 07-10-11, 11:24 AM   #16
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As a followup, I was wondering if you have seen the latest issue of Bicycling Magazine as they have an article in it about the best sunscreens for cyclist. Just wondering if you have tried any of them?

Quote:
interesting that no one else seems to get a reaction like this. i have sensed that it is something unusual.
I was born and raised here in Florida and have never really used any sun screen until the last year or so when I started riding. I don't know if it has anything to do with my Latin heritage or not, but I also haven't had a sunburn since I was a kid. As I mentioned, I use the Coppertone Sport and that is only when I am doing rides that last over 3 hours and I use it mostly on my legs than on my arms. My doctor highly recommended that I start using sun screen because of my age and the fact that our skin changes as we get older. So, I spray.
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Old 07-10-11, 07:48 PM   #17
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i thought about the hem of the shorts too. i've turned them over so the sticky stuff is away from my skin. no apparent effect.

i haven't seen the article on the different sun screens. my dermatologist, without doing patch tests or something like that, thought it best that i stay away from screens that are more chemical and stay with the mineral based ones. that's why i stay with the titanium or zinc, opaque covers.

my knickers are due here monday or tuesday. and the long term forecast is for high 80's and humid for next saturday when i have a century. so it will be a test right away. i guess the leg coolers will be the next option. fortunately not as expensive as the knickers. either that works will be a good investment. thanks, fran.
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Old 07-10-11, 07:52 PM   #18
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I avoid the midday midsummer sun, which is too intense for my Celtic hide. My favorite time to ride, for either recreation or commuting, is very early morning.
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Old 07-10-11, 11:15 PM   #19
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I would see a dermatologist if I were you. ... especially if the "rash" does not go away completely when you stay out of the sun.
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Old 07-12-11, 04:51 AM   #20
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A tan is simply evidence of sun damage. It is not protection.
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Old 07-12-11, 07:27 AM   #21
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A tan is simply evidence of sun damage. It is not protection.
I completely agree. Its not portrayed that way in the media however.
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Old 07-12-11, 08:19 AM   #22
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From medicine net:

Melanin: A skin pigment (substance that gives the skin its color). Dark-skinned people have more melanin than light- skinned people. Melanin also acts as a sunscreen and protects the skin from ultraviolet light.
Melanin is produced by cells called melanocytes. It provides some protection again skin damage from the sun, and the melanocytes increase their production of melanin in response to sun exposure. Freckles, which occur in people of all races, are small, concentrated areas of increased melanin production.



Why is again that people that live near the equator are darker-skinned?
Sun exposure is also a way of getting vitamin D. Some exposure is GOOD for you. A lot is bad.

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Old 07-12-11, 09:34 AM   #23
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Why is again that people that live near the equator are darker-skinned?
Sun exposure is also a way of getting vitamin D. Some exposure is GOOD for you. A lot is bad.
True. As humans migrated away from the equator and got less sun exposure due the latitude and wearing of clothes in colder climates, they evolved lighter skin to permit sufficient generation of vitamin D. Current research suggests that the currently recommended levels of vitamin D are too low and contributes to many ills and diseases.
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