With the Gold Coast Marathon kicking off this weekend some novice and even more experienced runners will experience issues from blisters. Blisters are caused purely and simply by friction.The skin on your feet rubs against parts of your shoe usually ,around the toes, backs of the heel and sides of your feet.This causes the aggravated skin to become inflamed and fill with fluid. Ouch!
On race day excessive sweating and sloshing through drink stations all adds moisture to the skin on your feet.Sweat from your legs travels down into your shoes and socks adding more moisture to your shoes and socks and onto the skin of your feet and this means more FRICTION. So anything that helps remove moisture and friction within your shoes will help reduce the risk of developing the dreaded blister.
Whilst blisters generally don’t pose a serious health risk if they do become infected they can cause more serious health issues. If you develop a large blister on the skin of your feet see the medical team at the event first aid tent and they will drain it for you and bandage the area.Likewise ,if you develop a blister underneath one of your toenails make sure to seek the medical tent so that a small hole can be drilled into the toenail to release the pressure(don’t worry it’s not as painful as it sounds and will provide immediate relief).Blisters are by far the most common injury seen on marathon race day! So prevention is the best cure.
Here are the top tips for blister prevention.
1.Wear blister free socks- these socks are generally made from synthetic materials that wick the sweat away from the skin.
2. Lubricate your feet- 3B ,second skin and Vaseline are all good lubricants.When used around the heels and toes this will reduce skin friction against the sock and shoe.
3. Make sure your shoes and socks have optimal fit.Get fitted for your shoes and be sure you have worn the shoes and socks for at least 80 -100 km in training prior to race day.
If you have any lingering issues post race have a consultation with a Podiatrist.
Have fun and enjoy the day.