Running is a great way to tone the body and lose weight. But, it places your feet under constant strain. In addition to sore and tired feet, here are four common foot conditions runners often experience and great tips to prevent them.

Black Toenails

When the toenail turns black or dark blue it’s called a subungual hematoma. This is a small area of blood underneath the nail caused by pressure. It can lead to pain and the nail may fall off. To prevent this nail trauma, make sure your sneakers fit properly. They should not be too snug nor too loose. A good way check your sneakers fit is to have a thumbs-width distance between your big toe and the end of the shoe without your heel sliding up and down. Another prevention trick is to keep your toenails trimmed.

Plantar Fasciitis

This is a normal cause of heel pain and a frequent problem for new runners. The plantar fascia is a ligament that connects your heel to your toes. It acts similar to a rubber band, helping your foot structure change during walking and running. If it becomes excessively stretched, inflammation and pain may ensue. A supportive shoe goes a long way in preventing plantar fasciitis. Supportive shoes match your foot type and are not worn out. Strict adherence to stretching routines, especially for your calf muscles, is the most effective method to prevent plantar fasciitis.


Blisters form when two layers of skin become separated by fluid due to friction, moisture, or heat. The fluid within a blister acts as a cushion but it can be painful and if it breaks the skin open. This can also lead to infection. To prevent blisters make sure your sneakers fit well and always wear a good quality sock to absorb sweat. If you notice a blister starting to form, try using a band-aid, tape, or lubrication to reduce the friction.

Heel Fissure

A fissure is a crack in the skin that forms when skin becomes dry and is placed under stress. If the crack is deep enough, it can bleed and increase infection chances. To prevent a fissure, use a pumice stone to rub off dead skin. Then apply a good moisturizer to the affected area.

Contact Coastal Podiatry Associates at 843-449-FOOT (3668) to schedule an appointment.

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