Blog post

5 Ways to look after your feet when you start running

March 9, 2024

When I started running back in lockdown, I thought it would be my knees or my muscles.. or even lungs that would hurt most. I was wrong. It’s my feet. I have very wonky feet. A bunion, flat feet and toes nails that have been damaged from years of snowboarding. All of them take a beating when I run. Sore feet can be the difference between an enjoyable and slightly torturous run. I’ve learnt over the years how important it is to take care of your tootsies. Here are just a few key tips that have helped me.

Invest in good insoles

I always invest in good running insoles. I have really poor arches which cause my feet to roll, good insoles provide the support I need to mould my feet into a much better position. Insoles can also improve shock absorption providing extra cushioning on impact. They have honestly made the biggest difference to comfort and capability when I run.

Trim your toenails

Anyone who runs will know the pain of having not invested in a mini pedi before a long run. I live in a hilly area with lots of steep downhill sprints – these can be agony if I haven’t looked after my feet properly, especially by trimming my nails. I now try to really take care of my nails. Invest in decent nail clippers, trim regularly and check for signs of ingrowing nails – especially at the edges.

Foot stretches

As any runner knows a good stretch before or after your run can prevent injury and improve mobility. The same applies for your feet. I like to try to fit in a couple of stretches in the evening when I’m watching telly. A few of my go-to stretches are the towel grabber (scrunch your toes as though they’re grabbing a towel); ankle circles; flexing the whole foot forwards and backwards and spreading toes (I call this the Monster Much!) If you fancy taking it to the next level you could buy a resistance band which will really help build strength and resilience.

Wear good socks

You don’t have to spend a fortune on technical running socks, but it is important to make sure your socks fit well and are in good condition. Holes or thick seams can cause really uncomfortable rubbing leaving you with painful blisters. I have a couple of favourite running socks. They probably cost about £5 each (not really a fortune is it?) but I really notice that they fit well, provide a bit of a bounce and are always comfortable.

Moisturise your feet

Over time a runner’s feet can become hard, dry and brittle. If you leave this untreated your skin is at risk of cracking risking additional injury. Try to spend a bit of time each week giving your feet a little extra TLC by using a foot moisturising cream. You’ll notice the difference immediately plus it’s the perfect opportunity to add a deep tissue massage to support recovery. Your feet do so much for you it’s important to give them a bit of lovin’ back!

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