I am NOT a tat person.
It's a personal preference and I just have never seen a tat I would want on my body FOREVER.
I am also NOT a permanent marker person.
When I have to pick between rub-on tats and permanent marker for triathlon numbers on my body, I just don't know which to pick.
I thought I did....until this weekend.
I don't know about anyone else, but I dread having the permanent marker numbers put on my body. It seems the person marking me either pushes too hard, has unbelievably sloppy number writing skills or the weather is really cold and I have to half undress to have numbers scrawled on my body while I am shivering...
That's not me getting marked....but he is half undressed. He'll have to lift his pant leg up also to get his number put on one calf and his AGE on another. Having your AGE put on your leg is hard the first time - but THAT is another blog.
A pic of some of my girlfriends and I at a sprint reverse triathlon last year. These numbers were handwritten on us by teenage volunteers...some who have better number writing skills than others. These are NOT are ages....if they were I would be 29.
Last year at TriRock San Diego, I thought I was in HEAVEN when we were given body marking tats to put on the night before.
Each number was an individual rub-on tattoo. I lined them on the bathroom counter to make sure the numbers were in the right order. Then I carefully put them on, squishing them close together to fit on my short(er) arms and legs.
I wish I could find the picture of those tattoos. They were awesome. They looked great. They stayed on all day and came off easily after the event.
Since last year's San Diego TriRock, all the triathlons I have competed in have NOT had rub-on tattoos. They all involved volunteers digging their black permanent marker viciously into my skin to write, usually in hideously unreadable scrawling, my bib number.
I wish I had taken pictures of all of these markings, but sorry, I do not. But for your enjoyment, I am going to show you some markings and you can vote (in your head) whether you think they look neat and professional or whether they look like a kindergartner's practicing making numbers.
I think these numbers look pretty good! What did you vote?
I don't know what these numbers looked like when they were finished, but I am guessing they didn't look as good as if they were rub-on tat numbers.
This one sucks! and not just because I am guessing it is the persons age. I mean, it is just messy.
It got to a point that I started carrying around my own black permanent marker and writing my own numbers on my body.....at least I know I can make an 8 look like an 8 and not a grade-schooler's version of a diamond ring.
I was SO looking forward to this year's San Diego TriRock. I just assumed we were going to get those awesome rub-on number tats.
Which would you pick?
And don't be swayed by the fact that the leg on the left is pasty-white and has no muscle tone and the leg on the right is nicely tanned from spending hours outside training and has nicely formed muscles. Please just concentrate on the formation of the numbers when choosing which you would pick.
This year San Diego TriRock's tats were ONE LONG CONTINUOUS NUMBER.....
You can see the puckers along the numbers...that is the strip puckering, NOT my skin.
These numbers were HUGE on my quad. You could have seen them if I was wearing a bathing suit to compete in, but I am not brave enough to bare that much skin while I am running or biking, so I wear a tri-top and tri-shorts.
Results of numbers with tri-shorts
Okay, a lot of good those numbers did for me.
If you are a guy triathlete and you DON'T shave your leg hair, these rub-on tats don't work very good.
(WARNING - the picture you are about to see below is NOT pretty, but it is accurate and I had full permission of the person to put this picture on my blog. He may have had a glass of wine or two at dinner before he agreed, but he DID agree!)
Rub-on tats do NOT work very well with hairy legs.
I put my tats on the night before as it was suggested in the race directions. That was a mistake.
Every time I rolled over in my hotel room bed, my leg where I was tatted, or my arm where I was tatted, stuck to the sheets.
Yes, the tats were sticky.
This is a picture of fish sticking to a pan. I didn't have any oil to unstick me...My body would just stick and then slowly unstick from the sheets.
It was a long night.
The race went good - but that's another blog.
Getting the rub-on number tats off, was NOT good.
It took scrubbing, make-up remover, and more scrubbing.
Little pieces of black tacky plastic was stuck inside the bathtub and on the rag and towel I used.
Thank goodness I was staying at a hotel.
Thank you Hilton.
We will be back again next year.
I hope you don't remember us as we left a LOT of our tats in your bathroom.
So I am conflicted on which is best.
Permanent marker numbers put on by people or rub-on tats.
What do you think?