Constant physical training can result in problems with your feet if you fail to maintain them properly. The impact of running and strength training coupled with sweaty trainers can lead to fungal infections, dry feet, heel pain and brittle nails. However, fortunately there are many things you can do to keep bacterial and odours at bay, reducing the chance of more serious conditions such as fungal nail infections and athlete's foot.
Multiple Training Shoes
One of the best things you can do when training regularly is to buy two or more pairs of training shoes. By changing the shoes in which you train in, you can ensure that each of them has plenty of time to dry out. This has two functions, first to reduce foot odour, which can be embarrassing for some people, second to limit the growth of bacteria that can fester and create a toxic environment within the shoe. For more anti-bacterial killing power, you could also stuff the shoes with newspaper to help absorb some of the moisture and then use a dedicated shoe spray after each use.
Changing your socks frequently will also help this. Wear a fresh pair of breathable cotton socks when you train, and if you plan on wearing your shoes home change your socks again. Whilst it may seem like it is making a lot of washing, you can easily buy low cut training socks in large value packs.
Coconut oil is well known for its anti-bacterial, microbial and fungal properties. It can applied to nails and feet to help limit the spread of athlete's foot and fungal nail infections, whilst also moisturising the skin to prevent deep painful fissures in the heel and the pad of the foot. This occurs when the skin is very dry and on a part of the foot that flexes. Unfortunately, these fissures can harbor bacteria, and the thick, dead skin can smell bad when it's sweaty.
Fresh Foot Baths
Finally a footbath is a great way to kill off bacteria that resides in hard-to-reach places like under the nails. Adding a few drops of tea tree oil to some warm water will create an anti-bacterial bath that will help to rejuvenate the feet. Just let your feet soak for around 15 minutes, and then treat them to a good quality foot scrub and post-bath moisturising cream or oil, such as coconut oil.
If you are like me, you have probably been in embarrassed in the past about having thick, yellow or otherwise unsightly toenails. You may have even suffered pain from your toenails. Those statements used to describe me, but with the help of my family and podiatrist, my toenails have returned to a strong, clear and beautiful state. The journey wasn't always easy, and it forced me to ask a lot of questions and do a lot of research. As a result, I learned everything you can find in these blog posts. I see other people with painful looking toenails on the street, and I want to help them with some pointers, but walking up to strangers – however well intentioned – is a bit beyond my comfort levels so I decided to create this blog. I hope it helps and entertains you!