Blisters, black toe nails and foot care

I have been running for nearly 30 years and know that looking after your feet are very important. But I still get amazed by the amount of people who just shuff their feet into a pair of socks and trainers and then think that blisters and black toenails are just part of running.

If your car’s tyres are flat you don’t say ‘well at least my car has wheels and drive it with flat tyres!’ No driving with flat tyres cause damage. Now I know the topic of blisters and black toe nails are vast and what work for one person might not work for another but it’s important to address the issues of what is causing the blisters.

Why do I get blisters or black toe nails?
All blisters and black toe nails has a cause. By fixing the cause you will prevent blisters and black toe nails which in my opinion is better than getting them in the first place.

The most common reasons for blisters and black toe nails are:
SHOES
It is important that your shoes are at least one size bigger than your normal shoes to allow extra space when your feet swells up. Also make site that your shoes are correct for your feet. Arch support and orthotics can often cause blisters.

SOCKS
Yes socks are important. Similar to shoes if they are too small it can put pressure on the tips of your toes which can lead to black toe nails. Socks which retains water and sweat soften the skin which in turn can cause hot spots and blisters. Thus make sure your socks are slightly bigger as well.

FOOT CARE
Looking after your feet is important. Keep your toe nails short to prevent pressure on the nail bed. Take off calluses as they are prone to blistering. Keeping the fine balance between keeping your feet harden up yet well looked after is very important.

RUNNING STYLE
If your hip flexors are weak you are more prone creating a breaking force when you land in comparison to someone who has a good leg stride that brings the heal backwards.