Nothing ruins a good training session like a blister—those small, fluid filled protrusions can alter your gait and make it way too painful to even consider running. Want to keep blisters at bay? Try these 6 tips from the wise folks at Map My Run.
1. Make sure your shoes fit correctly. This seems basic, but ill-fitting shoes are a major source of blisters. If your shoes are too small, your toes will rub against the front of the shoe and cause irritation. If they’re too large or wide, your foot may slip around excessively. As a general rule, there should be at least a thumb’s width between your longest toe and the end of the toe box. Above all, choose shoes that feel comfortable while running to ensure a good fit.
2. Choose well-fitting synthetic socks. Avoid cotton, as it retains moisture and will tend to stretch out and rub when wet. Socks with reinforced heels and toes also help reduce friction. Socks should fit snugly, with no gapping or excess fabric. If you are prone to blisters, you may find it helpful to use double-layer socks or to double up on socks, which may necessitate going up half a shoe size.
3. Maintain healthy feet and nails. Starting with healthy, moisturized skin, minimal calluses and short toenails will help reduce the opportunity for blisters to occur.
4. Use products to reduce friction. There are many options available, from good old-fashioned petroleum jelly and Body Glide to drying powders.
5. Tape blister-prone areas. While duct tape is popular among trail runners, you can also tape your feet with an inexpensive medical tape called paper tape or surgical tape.
6. Treat your feet sooner rather than later. If you’re out on a long run and feel the beginnings of a blister, take a few minutes to stop, change into dry socks and/or tape your feet. It can make all the difference in preventing multiple large blisters.
Need to get your feet in running shape ASAP? Schedule an appointment with Houston podiatrist Andrew Schneider today!