running foot pain

Runners: Don’t Tiptoe Around Foot Pain

In Wellness by Alnoor Ladhani, Chiropodist

The health of your feet had a direct impact on your mobility, and ultimately, the quality of your life. Your feet absorb shock as you walk, adjust to uneven surfaces, and support your forward movement.

When your feet aren’t in good shape, simple activities such as walking to the bathroom, standing on a step stool, and stepping up stairs become difficult. Here are some down-to-earth tips to manage foot pain and address potential challenges before they worsen.

Think before you pop that blister!

Blisters can be especially annoying for running, but they heal on their own. A blister is a protective bubble our body creates to heal a wound. The outer layer of skin protects the wound while the fluid inside bathes it in nutrients that speed up the healing process.

don't pop that blister

Popping a blister can slow the healing and lead to infection. If you’re going to pop your blisters at home, try to support that self-contained, sterile environment by using a completely sterilized tool to do the popping.

To maintain infection control, don’t use the thread method. Instead, pick up some scalpel blades or hypodermic needles; they’re already sterile and are designed for single use.

As experienced podiatrist Rebecca Rushton says, “when you prick your blister and put something foreign into it, you’re that much closer to the layer where the blood vessels are — the dermis.” That’s the layer of skin where infection is most apt to occur.

Moisturize your feet regularly, especially in winter

After a run, nothing feels better than a shower or a soak in the tub to relieve the soreness in your feet and other regions of your body. If you’ve been running for a while, you probably know that moisturizing your feet after a bath is the best way to rehydrate your skin and keep your heels from cracking.

Cracked heels can lead to heel fissures: open sores that bleed. Moisturizing your feet should be part of your daily routine, not just an occasional afterthought. Whether you run in cold weather or not, you should always take care of your feet.

Moisturizing feet to avoid cracked heels

Your heels are especially prone to dryness during winter. The first cracks are often unnoticeable. The dryness of winter weather can cause damage to your feet and heels even if you only walking barefoot around the house.

To keep your feet moisturized, soak them in a bucket of warm water every night while you browse Facebook or YouTube. When you’re done, dry them off and apply a moisturizer. You’ll feel good and your feet will be less likely to experience those painful cracks and fissures.

Stay hydrated on the inside

Dehydration is also a major cause of cracked skin, including heels. Your body requires moisture on the inside as well as the outside to stay healthy. Make sure you drink plenty of fresh, clean water on a daily basis.

Relieve burning and painful feet with magnesium

Magnesium plays an essential role in maintaining foot health. It’s a positive ion that regulates more than 325 enzymes in the body and helps control muscles, produce energy, and eliminate toxins. It’s also an effective form of natural pain relief.

Magnesium helps relieve pain

Magnesium deficiency increases your potential to experience pain. If you’re eating processed foods, or produce that’s grown in depleted soil, you’ll need supplements to get enough magnesium into your body. Too many people are magnesium-deficient and take the wrong supplements. It’s preferable to ingest only pure, whole-food supplements.

Adding Epsom salt to your bath relieves sore legs and a tired body, but it also assists your body to absorb magnesium. Many people who suffer from burning feet apply magnesium oil or take a magnesium supplement to alleviate the pain.

Magnesium has been used as a pain reliever and muscle relaxant for quite some time. As explained on Dr. Oz’s website, the experience of pain, which consists of electrical impulses to and from the brain, includes excessive stimulation of NMDA. This neurotransmitter is lessened by certain drugs, but that approach entails substantial side effects.

Magnesium ensures pain relief without any side effects. Although not approved by the FDA for prescription to treat pain relief, magnesium is readily available and legal to purchase and safely consume.

Taking care of your feet while you run

You probably know how to take care of your feet before and after a run, but what about while you run?

Long-distance track and cross-country runner Stephen Ondieki was accustomed to running barefoot on the dirt in Kenya. When he ran on the paved streets in the US, he experienced excruciating pain in his feet.

At first, Ondieki thought it was a matter of getting used to the pavement. He didn’t know that running on flat surfaces was causing the real damage. A doctor examined Ondieki’s feet and found them to be collapsed inward, which forced his knees to rotate inward as well. He suffered five stress fractures in his feet.

Orthotics support your feet and balance the impact load

Although Ondieki’s case sounds extreme, he didn’t require surgery or physical therapy to recover; he simply needed orthotics. With proper orthotics, his problem was solved, and he finished first and second in a pair of major cross-country championships.

Custom orthotics provide care for your feet while you run

Custom orthotics provide support you can’t get from over-the-counter orthotics. Custom orthotics are designed to correct the biomechanical deficiencies specific to your feet. They improve your biomechanics by ensuring proper weight distribution and support for your arches.

Get your custom orthotics from Step By Step

We provide custom orthotics for people from all walks of life. First, we’ll assess your condition and determine the cause. We’ll evaluate your medical history as well as your walking pattern and even the kind of shoes you wear on a daily basis.

Then we’ll use a non-weight-bearing plaster cast to capture the impression of your feet. From this information, we’ll create a custom set of orthotics that are perfectly designed to support your feet and get you back on the trail.

Get in touch with us today to find out more about how we can help you run better and say goodbye to foot pain.