Runner’s Tan

Posted by Filed Under: Running is Funny

The dog days of summer are long gone. It’s cold, dark and damp outside. Some of you may already be dealing with ice and snow. Fortunately, runners carry with them all year long the remnants of those bright, shiny rays of sunshine. I’m speaking, of course, of runner’s tan.

Yes, we run those endless miles to put our bodies in exquisite shape. We are well-toned and fit. And yet even a sideways glance at ourselves in the mirror is enough to make us blanch whiter than those milk-colored feet at the bottom of our bronzed shins and knees.

Few things in life are more attractive than those pale singlet strap marks on our shoulders, followed by the terra-cotta arms that lead to a thin band of ivory around the wrist, where even the watch’s Indiglo button has left its mark.

And I will not even discuss the shorts area.

I have taken runner’s tan to the next level. When I run, I carry my house key on a coiled rubber band around my left hand. I now have a ghostly spiral tattoo there, which is great for breaking the ice at parties.

It’s annoying, but not so much that I’m ready to use rock salt and olive oil on it. I’m a runner, not grilled asparagus.

This is a problem that afflicts runners of all types, but perhaps we can turn things around. Suppose we transformed runner’s tan into a fashion trend. We could put stick-on numbers reading “26.2” on our arms in the spring and peel them off in the fall.

In the meantime, it’s better just to deal with this minor inconvenience. It certainly beats the alternative.

About Mike Antonucci

I ran 6-minute miles when I was in the military, then tapered for 20 years. Two-time marathoner (3:43 PR), my next goal is to stay healthy enough to run another. There are literally thousands of people handing out running advice and serious tips. I prefer to focus on the humorous or odd facets of our shared obsession. Let's face it, running is funny.

One Comment
  1. Blaine Moore (Run to Win) on November 24th at 4:09 pm

    I try to avoid the whole runners tan thing by wearing 50 spf sun screen. The whole cancer thing doesn’t hold a lot of appeal for me.

    It sorta works…