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Austin Cap 10K| A Runners Guide to Skin Care and Sun Safety

The Austin Statesman Cap 10k will take place on Sunday, April 6th 2014, and thousands of Austinites and Texans will take to the streets and hit the pavement on their way to better health. We at Sanova Dermatology wanted to share a few tips about how to make your run the healthiest and most successful yet!

A few things to take into consideration this race day are:

Sunburn & Sunscreen

We know you know to apply sunscreen before you head out to the race, and we know it’s not everyone’s favorite part of their routine, too. But, there are a few ways to make it a bit easier for yourself. A spray sunscreen will be easiest for your body, as it can get a good coating and is simple. Also, a wax sunscreen stick is great for the face. This is one of the best strategies to avoid that burning feeling when sunscreen gets in the eyes. “We know you’re going to sweat,” says Dr. Miriam Hanson, board-certified dermatologist in Austin. “But just because you want to focus on the race doesn’t mean you should forget about the damage 1-2 hours in the sun can do to you!” No one looks forward to a good burning of the eyes, especially when running a race! Wax based sunscreen don’t drip like their cream and lotion counterparts, letting you remain focused and protected.

More Sunscreen

Once you have successfully applied sunscreen, that doesn’t finish the job for the day. “You must reapply in order to shield yourself, as running and the sun cause you to sweat off your previous application,” shared Dr. Adam Mamelak, dermatologist and skin cancer expert in Austin, TX. A good idea is to carry a travel spray sunscreen with you and spray as you stop for water, or while running (safely) if you are determined to keep up your pace.


It’s not a pretty word but definitely something important to keep in mind as your plan to run your 6.2+ miles. “Chaffing is caused by the irritation of skin rubbing on a surface it come into contact with consistently, such as fabric or other skin,” explains Dr. Mamelak. A great way to combat this is to use a powder or cornstarch to make sure that your skin does not rub itself while sweaty causing an irritation. Another option, for serious and long distance runners, is a running lubricant, which allows for contact without the chaffing effect. Drinking water is also key to stopping chaffing, as keeping yourself hydrated allows yourself to sweat consistently and for sweat to not get sticky and irritate your skin.


Blisters are very important to avoid, as we all need the ability to get around after the race. There are multiple things you can do to prevent blisters, like applying a powder to keep your feet dry throughout your race. Runners that are aware that they tend to get blisters can prepare by applying band-aids or bandages before the race, stopping the rubbing of the blister-prone areas. It is also best to not where new shoes the day of a race, as breaking in the stiff shoe can cause extra irritation.

Running Attire

Wearing proper running gear can always help in avoiding any issues throughout the activity. Airy materials allow for the body to stay cool and not conceal the heat and moisture while running, but it is also important to wear tighter gear nearer to your skin to prevent chaffing. This includes wearing tighter running under-gear like running boxer briefs and sports bras. It is best not to wear new gear the day of a race, as chemicals within the shirt, like starch, can cause chaffing as well as contact dermatitis.  

Stay Hydrated

“As with all outdoor activity and keeping healthy skin, drinking water is extremely important,” says Dr. Hanson. “This allows your body the proper amount of moisture, strength, and the ability to sweat.” Sweating is extremely important for cooling your body, as well as relieving toxins from the body. Even though it may slow you down a few seconds, it’s best to at least grab a cup of water on the go!

We can’t wait to see you out at the race this weekend! We wish you the best of luck and the best of skin!

Contact Us

If you have any questions about protecting your skin from the sun,  contact us to set up a consultation with the doctors of Sanova Dermatology.

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