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It's never too late to be what you might have been. --George Eliot

This blog is about my journey as an asthmatic, hypothyroid, formerly plus-sized endurance athlete. It's occasionally interrupted with things that have nothing to do with that or whining about my weight and horrible eating habits. "You're never too old to be what you might have been" --George Eliot

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Best Advice Series: An introduction

So here's my idea. Let's do some public service stuff for all the people that have resolved to get healthier and fitter during 08. Every couple of days, I'm going to introduce a topic and ask some of you experienced folks to chime in with your best advice, and then I can make a link back to the the topic in my sidebar. All you endurance athletes, now is the time for your trial and error and pain to be someone else's gain!
My topics will be slightly slanted towards the concerns of the larger-sized athlete, but should be able to benefit any beginner.

So today's topic is:
CHAFING/BLISTERING

I'm talking running, cycling, swimming, underarms, inner thighs, between the cheeks, toes, heels, short runs, long runs whatever, wherever!

This is NOT a rare problem, so what are you best tips for beating this problem? What products or clothing do you swear by that have changed your life and make chaffing a thing of the past?


Okay, I'll start.

I really, really like these socks called Injinji. Ever heard of them? They are so sexy. They save your toes from blisters and rubbing. We also like SportsSlick. Stuff does not wash off and a tube lasts a really long time. I've used it when I had chaffing on my upper arm during swims, too.

The rest of you, comment and give us your best Anti-Chafing advice!

...

26 comments:

  1. I'm a big fan of BodyGlide. I slather all over any place that has elastic - waist band, under edge of sports bra, panty line or liners in shorts (depending on what I'm wearing). Every little spot that is touched by elastic needs a lot of body glide and I slater my feet in it, too before I put on my socks. Works for me.

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  2. 1) Baby oil gel.
    2) Baby Aveeno for chamois cream - it has dimethicone which makes it slippery.
    3) Tegaderm patches for flat areas that always chafe. Be sure skin is clean and dry when applying.

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  3. In high school during two-a-days, I used to get mad chaffing in my arm pits during morning practice. That is, until I started putting deoderant on first. Problem solved. I don't know if that would work for any other body part, but it worked there.

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  4. Great idea with the Best Advice Series!

    hmmm...my chaffing problems are worst in the "sports bra area." The sports bras I've had the best luck with are nike and under armour. Body Glide works wonders, too!

    I heard great things about the Enell bra, so I got one. They say to get your normal bra size and it will be tight, but it's supposed to be that way. Boy, they weren't kidding! That thing flattens me like a boy. I'd go up a size if I got another one.

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  5. I've switched to tight fitting/compression shorts for running, the loose fitting running shorts chafe way to much. So this means I don't have to use body glide on my long runs. On the bike I use chamois buttr on the cycling pad and where ever else chafing might happen. They also sell the buttr in single use tubes, great to thow in your back pocket for the halfway point in an IM race.

    Also I have spent a great deal of money trying to get cloths that fit me properly, too loose and you get chafing, to tight and you get raw spots.

    My worst chafe parts are my inner thighs, heart rate strap and sometimes lower down on my lats where my arm rubs. For the Heart rate strap and the lats I just use bodyglide.

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  6. I'd imagine there will be a series on the tata's as well, but here's my recent discovery that would fit both categories.

    Moving Comfort Fiona bra.

    I'm a large ta'ta'd lady, and chafing becomes a very real problem with the ladies, especially when the bra gets rained on or just all sweaty-like. Body Glide doesn't help. Butt butter doesn't help. Nothing seemed to help. Except the Fiona. This is the first bra that I've found that makes the ladies stay FABULOUSLY, plus it has never chaffed me. Ever. Probably a better fit, but whatever...no chaffing.

    (Alright, to be fair, MisheleK turned me on to this. She knows her gear!)

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  7. I'd like to know what to do about my BLACK TOES??? I've tried EVERYTHING... bigger shoes, different shoes, different brand of shoes,... different socks, no socks...tape the toes, donut pad over the toe.... ugh. This may sound crazy, but my feet have grown 2 full sizes since I started all this workout stuff. Perhaps my feet are just "stretching out"... but my toes are killing me!

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  8. This will echo what some others have posted, but here are my endorsements:

    1) For blisters--Injinji toe socks all the way!!!
    2) For general chafing--Body Glide or something similar.
    3) For HR monitor strap chafing specifically--wrap the back with moleskin
    4) Great big boobies sports bra--Moving Comfort Fiona...the secret is in the adustable straps that hold you up and squish you vertically as well as horizontally.
    5) For leg chafing--WEAR COMPRESSION SHORTS OR PANTS. None of that loosey-goosey running shorts bullshit. Also, remember you are not supposed to be wearing undies with this stuff.
    6) For nether-region chafing on the bike--bag balm (also has antiseptic properties, which is useful in avoiding saddle sores)

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  9. Thank you so much for doing this! This is my year to become a triathlete, and I'm dealing with the unknown.

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  10. The biggest difference for is wearing clothing that fits properly and wicks. For the longer workouts I'll use BodyGlide or petroleum jelly in a pinch.

    When biking I swear by chamis cream.This saves your nether regions from a less-then-desirable fate when riding for more than an hour.

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  11. I second or third the moving comfort fiona bra...but I also need to put in a word for the Maia bra by MC. I have the fiona...it's pretty good, but I'm a DD and the maia is even better! I also love the Enell bra..it ain't pretty but it sure does keep the girls immobile.

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  12. From a girl with tree trunk legs...I've been a spandex wearing fool for years and I'm proud of it. I'm convinced that 'running shorts' are for world-class runners and genetically gifted individuals. Everyone I know has trouble with shorts riding up but they put up with it. I say "NO MORE". Put on the spandex and forget about it.

    On the underarm issue, I've had trouble with wetsuits and have found that my problems are actually coming from the jersey I wear under the wetsuit. To solve that I just step into it before I bike.

    Thanks for offering this up for comments, it's fun to share lessons learned over the years.

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  13. Enell bra - it squashes them, true, but your girls don't move. And it's microfibre...mmmmm...
    Bike-shorts style running shorts.
    Everything made of wicking fabric
    I use vaseline around the neck of my wetsuit for long races, I know I shouldn't - I'm going to try Nancy's baby oil gel idea

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  14. Nice pic, btw.

    I got Monistat AntiChafe cream as a sample at an event not long ago. It's good stuff. Dries to a clear powder finish and has no scent. I usually use BodyGlide, but I like this stuff a little better because it doesn't ever feel sticky.

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  15. From the ultra running perspective..

    I use Body Glide around the sports bra area. That seems to work, unless it rains, or I dump alot of water down my back.

    I use Desitin Cream (not ointment) on my panty line and butt crack. On long runs, these areas can chafe. Smear some goo on first thing, and you are good to go.

    I also wear Injinji socks, but smear my toes with petroleum jelly before starting out.

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  16. I get a burn so bad under my jog bra strap that I have permachafe most of the summer.

    BodyGlide works wonders when I remember to actually use it.

    Vaseline eats through jog bras, BTW.

    Also, UnderArmor compression shorts are a must.

    For the bike, love Assos chamois cream!

    My e-mail address is dawn_appleton at comcast.net

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  17. Great idea.

    I am with body glide and compression shorts.

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  18. I use A&D or desitin and then put body glide over that-great for very hot weather.

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  19. I don't chafe much, probably because I'm built like a boy (except down there, obviously). For feet, I definitely will go with the hot and sexy Injinji toe socks. I love them and treat myself to two or three new pair at the beginning of every running season. I also love Aquaphor for feet. I slather that on, then don the socks and the men can't keep their hands off me. I'll have to look for those pads that Nancy mentions because on marathons if I wear a belt, I tend to get chafing right above my belly button.

    For legs, it's running skirts all the way. If the weather is above 60 I wear a running skirt. I really like the Triks Skirt (madam I'm adam) Gym Girl. Incidentally, they are having a clearance sale right now. (Not affiliated, just addicted.)

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  20. I really love BodyGlide, which people have mentioned.

    My long-distance hiker trick is duct tape. Slap it over a hot spot (blister in the making) with enough extra to keep it in place (ie, if you have a hot spot on your heel, the tape should wrap around your heel so it has a lot of skin to grip on). Cuts out friction, and keeps the hot spot from turning into a blister. It's really an emergency fix; YMMV.

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  21. The side of my neck was rubbed raw from my swim suit last February. Vaseline was alright but I ended up buying a suit with extremely thin straps for the entire back and over the shoulder. It almost feels like swimming naked! (Only not as ugly.)

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  22. I think after awhile, the old chafing seems to stop happening and new spots pop up. My newest is along my back from the heart rate monitor, but body glide on the skin first seems to help....unfortunately that's an impossible place to reach and I dress alone 99% of the time.

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  23. Bodyglide everywhere. And I mean everywhere. The only times I've chafed or blistered were times when I didn't lube up like mad.

    I also only run when wearing spandex of some form on my legs. Keeps things in place.

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  24. Hey Misty, can you answer this (or maybe someone who comments on the comments), but do people wear compression shorts by themselves or under running shorts? Do people wear them by themselves or would that be too dorky? I like to run in my trishorts the best b/c of the chafing issue.

    I like butt butter (chamois cream) but probably I just like saying butt butter. I like it better than bodyglide.

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  25. folks...bodyglide..comfy wear...for me..comfy shoes....
    havent worn a bra in say...never
    good luck

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  26. Rather than compression shorts, I found some capris that I really like. I have chubby thighs and I don't really like the "compression" relocating my fat to below the short...not a good look. The capri is good because it is compression, but it ends below the knee where I have muscle - no bulging.

    I also like the skirts, but prefer the skirt with the panty rather than the short underneith. With the shorts under the skirt, I'm always having to pull down the shorts, because they ride up my chubby thighs.

    I should probably shop around for better sports bras, but I generally just use whatever brand is cheap and generally don't have a problem as long as I am liberal with the body glide. I try to avoid cotton in all running gear. It gets wet quickly and stays wet.

    I never have had blistering on my feet. Maybe it's because I lived on a tropical island when I was growing up and didn't wear shoes? I do get black toenails, but it got better when I changed my shoe to a wider size. I think my wide feet are from being barefoot too. I'm really good at fording streams because I have such a good base.

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