How to Prevent Blisters While Training for a Marathon

Houston podiatrist discusses preventing blisters during marathon trainingIt's summertime in Houston, and that means two things. Number one, it's hot and humid, and number two, it's the start of training for the Chevron Houston Marathon. I'm Houston podiatrist, Dr. Andrew Schneider, and it is marathon training season. The beginning of marathon training season in Houston is always the hardest part, because it's 90 to 100 degrees and it's 90 to a 100% humidity, and we're just walking through a swamp and running through a swamp while we're training. That equates to our feet. Our feet end up in these boggy mess and then you add perspiration to it and it's the perfect environment to develop blisters. Well, blisters are a runner's nightmare.

What can we do to prevent blisters? It starts with socks. When I was a kid, the right sock was always a 100% cotton. 100% cotton is exactly the wrong kind of sock to wear, especially if you're running in Houston, Texas in the summertime. That's because 100% cotton will absorb all the moisture like a sponge. It'll keep that moisture next to your foot, and you're guaranteed to get a blister because of it.

When you're looking for the right sock, you want to make sure you have socks that have fibers in it that are going to wick the moisture away from your foot. Drymax, CoolMax, Thorlo are all common fibers and brands of socks that are going to accomplish this. When the moisture is wicked away from your foot, it's going to keep the surface of your foot dry and really help prevent blisters from forming.

Now, if you do that and you're still getting blisters, then you want to check your shoe. You want to make sure that your shoes are tied properly and tied snugly, so your foot's not moving inside your shoe, because those shear pressures of your foot moving inside your shoe will also create blisters. We see this a lot when people don't lace their shoes. They just keep their shoes tied and they slip their shoes on, and their foot is just not snug into the shoe. If both of these situations happen and you take care of it and you're still getting blisters, then it's time for you to come into the office for us to take a look. I need to take a look at you mechanically to see if there are any excess pressures or excess forces that's causing you to develop these blisters. It's the perfect time.

The marathon is six months away, so you have plenty of time to solve the problem and continue your training. If you find that you're getting blisters and you don't know how to stop getting them, give us a call for an immediate appointment, or you can request an appointment on our website. Come in quickly. Let's get you taken care of, and let's make this the best marathon training season yet.

 

Dr. Andrew Schneider
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A podiatrist and foot surgeon in Houston, TX.