The best ways to avoid blisters when running....
The end of days comes when the back of your heels deny your shoes for fear of agitation, or worse, fluid build up under thinned skin destined to meet a needle. EWW! Although we do appreciate the creativity, the many 'hack' remedies for blisters seem comical and unrealistic at best. Cutting open your shoes. Using duct tape. Super glue. (Ultrarunners and trailrunners are notorious for using these weird methods, no?!) While old methods such as lubricants are not so fantastic and cut up band-aids create one more thing to rub against, some remedies are terror to think of...but so are blisters. So we're going to bust out some proactive measures in just not getting them at all.
The best thing we've seen resulted in the immediate need to re-lace all of our running shoes. It also required a few views of a YouTube demonstration because 'watch-then-do-successfully' isn't a skill that everyone has. Lace Lock or heel lock is this fantastic tying method for tying running shoes that essentially snuggles the portion of your shoe that rubs around your heel. You can also feel as you're tying them up the constriction through to your ankle, without the restriction as if you had just tied your laces too tight. It seems to take some practice in the effort of pulling down... very important... which contradicts years of running shoe tying experience.
Lace locking effectively tackles the rubbing aspect of blisters, now the ever-frustrating moisture problem. As you know, consistent level of moisture keeps your body happy. So if you don't make a habit to lather on good lotion, excess moisture when you go for to run will soften up your skin. Not just lotion, but sweat or water, will all create blisters from your “I'm regularly dry and forgotten” skin. Also,if you are spending considerable amounts of time ensuring your feet are well maintained and hydrated, cotton and synthetic socks will still pull out this moisture. And you know what, this also makes blisters! So with the odds against us, how do we stop these nasty blisters?
We personally intend to train not to sweat into our shoes....alas, sweating when running does happen. To make do, (1) wear good running socks (2) moisturize with the best.
(1) REALLY GOOD RUNNING SOCKS ARE WORTH IT. We've heard the absolute best running socks ever are made by Balega. (We've never tried them, though!) We also hear Feetures socks are good. And we love Stance Performance running socks, mostly because they just look cool. We do like Smartwool or Darn Tough socks for trailrunning or running in the rain -- we've found the wool to be the best socks for the wet, muddy runs. (Any of the sporty wool-based socks are recommended for when you're guaranteed to be getting wet). Socks with the extra layer of sock or padding behind the heels are great. We like the double layer socks from Wrightsocks.
(2) OIL YOUR SKIN. For those who don't care so much to achieve proper hydration, or buy expensive running socks, you have options too. We enjoy using oily lotions that resist water for a good portion of time, and hydrate the skin slowly. We love pure coconut oil, Aquaphor, Corn Huskers lotion, A&D or anything like these -- all are great.
These simple methods to help out every runner who've had blister pain and thought about never putting on their shoes again because of said nasty blister.
What do you think, do you have any blister avoiding tips you've tried that work?? Happy Running!!