File under: Sometimes otherwise smart people do dumb things.
I’ve never been in a tanning bed in my (almost) 41 years on earth. Until Monday. Thanks to a meeting of two circumstances1 I decided to take the plunge and get a little unnatural color Monday. I knew going in there were risks. S. will occassionally use the tanning beds at our gym and while she gets some color after a day or two, she often has to go through what appears to be an uncomfortable red-pink stage to get to the brown. My skin is lighter than hers and parts of it don’t get exposed to the sun very often. I tried to be careful, but I wasn’t careful enough.
I expected my chest and back to get a little roasted. I had sunscreened them both pretty well on our two trips to the pool this summer. I kind of forgot about the backs of my thighs, though. I figure I haven’t worn shorts or swim trunks with less than a 7″ inseam2 in over 20 years. As such, the backs of my thighs haven’t been touched by the sun since at least high school. They got touched a little bit in the tanning bed, to say the least.
As I type this, I’m sitting on a barstool in our kitchen with my legs propped so there is no weight on the parts of my legs that got fried. I’ve been treating them generously with aloe gel. I assume the pain will go away in a few days, right?
It’s been a long, long time since I had a real sunburn, so this is a good reminder to keep lathering the sunscreen on when I am going to be outside for extended periods. And I might want to keep the long, workout shorts on next time I use a tannng bad. Or just skip the tanning bed all together.