Your feet are the difference between a great PB beating run and a painful miserable one. So why do we neglect them so much?
They have so much power, yet most athletes do not give them the proper attention they deserve.
Not only can they alone bring your training to a halt, but foot pain can lead to injuries further up the body due to changed technique.
This list will guide you in the right direction to ensuring your feet are in tip top condition to allow you to do your very best.
First and foremost your shoes need to be a perfect fit. Shoes too small cause bruised toes, too narrow cause pinched nerve pain and too wide allow the foot to move unnecessarily which causes blisters. As you can tell there are lots of ways wrong fitted shoes cause you problems.
From experience it is hard to find shoes that are the perfect fit quickly, it will take time but you won’t regret the decision once you have them. Improperly fitted shoes are actually one of the leading causes of injuries in runners.
Once you have found the perfect pair for your feet, it’s recommended you buy a couple of pairs. Running trainers only last around 500 miles so this will save time having to search around for a new pair again.
Top tip: If you run every day have multiple trainers so that you always have a dry pair.
Shoes are not the only important choice you’re going to have to make. Ill-fitting or a low-quality pair of socks are one of the leading causes of blisters. Getting a high-quality pair with lots of technical benefits will help you take care of your feet much easier.
Socks are our forte at SockMine. We offer 13 different pairs of socks designed specifically for running. Whether you’re going for a light jog to running a marathon we’ve got you covered.
At Sockmine; we want to solve the one problem every athlete dreads, blisters. That’s why we created our award-winning Griplock™ sock. This sock follows the exact contours of your feet, minimising any movement between the sock and the skin and removing friction from your feet to help prevent you from getting blisters.
Top tip: Have multiple socks for different distances and weather conditions.
We recommend any sock from our running range. Depending on what sort of run you are going on, will depend on which sock you will choose. Also with the GripLock™ range, you can have all the benefits of these distance specific socks as well as blister protection. Our favourite is our GripLock™ Anklet.
Soften your skin.
Soft, well-moisturized feet will reduce the risk of painful cracked feet that no athlete wants.
Running can aggravate these cracks, leading to infection and bleeding. If you have got severely cracked feet, it is recommended to have a rest and wait until there healed.
Top tip: Moisturise your feet after a bath or shower as this will help retain some water.
We Recommend Shea butter Foot Cream. Winner of consecutive beauty awards and we can see why. Smells fantastic and works on the toughest dry cracked skin.
Cutting your nails back should be done on a regular basis. Long toe nails cause many problems that will not only injure you but also ruin your socks.
Long nails will get caught on the insides of your socks causing holes thus having a detrimental effect on the performance of your socks.
Uncut nails can also cause cuts to neighbouring toes which can be very painful and also hard to get sorted if you run regularly.
Top tip: Cut your nails after a shower when they are softer and easier to cut.
We Recommend the H&S 14 Pcs Nail Care Kit. This kit has all the pieces you will ever need. It is also in a handy travel case which allows you to take it anywhere you go.
This may sound a bit crazy, but your feet need strength training too. Stronger feet will lead to a better running style and increased speed. Two major aspects of running every runner want to improve.
There are a number of different exercises you can try;
- Toe Raises – Standing upright, rise up to your toes 15-20 times.
- Towel Pulls – Put a towel under your feet and pull it towards you for 25-20 seconds.
- Walking on toes – Walk on your toes alone for 30-45 seconds.
- Heel drops – Standing on the edge of a ledge with only your toes drop your heels down and up again 15-20 times.
Top tip: Wearing your shoes less often will increase foot strength.
A foot massage either by you or a professional will give you instant relief to any pain and also prevent future injury.
If choosing a professional, research them beforehand, working with athletes feet can be different to everyday feet. Reach out to fellow athletes and see if they recommend anyone they’ve used before.
It is easy enough to massage your feet yourself and in some cases just as good. All it takes is a tennis ball or something similar. Take the ball and roll the bottom of your foot over it, on any spots of pain keep it on until the pain eases. This will release any pressure and relieve you from discomfort.
If you don’t have a ball then running your thumb firmly up the sole of your foot can be equally as successful.
Top tip: Do this on a weekly basis to see real progress and pain-free feet.
We recommend the Spiky massage ball kit. This kit has a few different choices depending on what type of balls you want. There are a range of different sizes and firmness choices. Not only can these be used on your feet but also on other parts of your body.
For more tips, tricks and everything in between follow our brand new Facebook group (SockMiners). We have created this group to bring sports men and women together from across the globe to share training tips and help, as well as shout about their latest feats.
Also, follow our other social media’s to ensure you stay up to date with everything SockMine.