My first wetsuit was sleeveless. I wore this trusty wetsuit during one of my first triathlons – a sprint distance race in the cold, kelp-laden, lovely salt water in Pacific Grove, California.
FYI – salt water behaves differently than fresh water, and this was the first time I had worn my suit in salt water. In the less than 40 minutes I was in the water, moving my arms around and around, I rubbed my delicate underarms absolutely raw.
Tons of fun for the rest of the race…and then the following day when I did a sprint distance race in the same area. It’s amazing what adrenaline will get you through – and an extra shirt I wore to cover my arms a bit got me through it.
The good part about this story, besides learning an important lesson about salt water, is finding a product to help heal chafing. After returning home, I was in the locker room after a masters swim showing off my raw underarms, and one of the swimmers said that I should use Aquaphor. It is a healing ointment, and it really seems to help speed along the healing process! I now carry at least a mini travel tube with me to races and have a bigger one at home.
I wrote about chafing a couple of days ago and mentioned that it was part of being a triathlete, but that doesn’t mean we can’t speed along our healing. Eating well, resting, and generally taking good are of our bodies helps too!