Each year we eagerly wait for Spring to arrive. Now that it's here we're ready to get off the couch and get our bodies moving. Whether we're walking more, starting a new running program, digging in our garden, or kicking around a soccer ball with friends our feet may be giving us some problems we didn't know we had. We may discover some skin or toenail issues or new foot pain.
Either way it's time to give your feet some love so they can easily take you on your Spring adventures.
Learn how you can prevent the most common Spring foot problems with these 16 hacks!
When we're more sedentary and it's cool outside we tend to have few problems with foot odor. But as the temperature rises and we're walking or running our feet can become pretty stinky. Fungus and bacteria love a humid environment.
1. Change out your shoes daily to let them dry out.
2. Wear socks made from materials that wick away moisture from your feet; try socks with materials such as polypropylene or polyethylene instead of moisture attracting cotton.
3. Use foot powder to keep your feet dry.
4. Plug your shoes in with the Shoe Zap; it destroys 99% of all the fungus and bacteria that cause feet to stink.
Dry, Cracked Heels
Wearing sandals, walking in backless shoes, and going barefoot will all lead to dry, cracked heels.
5. Use flip flops for short trips outside so that your heels don't get so much battering from the pavement.
6. Soak your feet in the bath and use a pumice stone to get rid of the unsightly dryness.
With any prolonged physical activity you're likely to get a blister. Anything you can do to prevent friction between your skin and your socks and shoes will help.
8. Follow the first three moisture reducing hacks outlined for stinky feet. Dry feet and socks will reduce the friction that cause blisters to form.
9. Buy shoes that fit. Ill-fitting shoes are much more likely to cause blisters.
10. Use surgical tape on skin areas that are blister prone (see my latest blog on this newest hack for blisters).
In spring I always see more heel pain. Weekend warriors or anyone who's been sedentary in the winter months are often the first to call my office.
11. Are your orthotics still working well or are you experiencing mild or even moderate pain when you wear them? Our feet grow and change over the years. It's important to get your orthotics checked on an annual basis to be sure they are still doing the job.
12. Use Dynamic Warm-ups for Runners to reduce the likelihood of heel pain or other foot problems.
13. Buy new shoes. If you haven't bought athletic shoes in a year, it's time for a new pair. If you're a runner or participate in other activities check out my blog How to Buy the Best Running Shoes.
Athlete's Foot and Fungal Toenails
Athletes foot and fungal toenails are caused by fungus. Although fungus is everywhere in our environment it particularly loves to grow where it's warm, wet, and dark; namely our shoes.
14. Reduce the moisture in your shoes by using any of the fixes for stinky feet.
15. Use flip flops in lockers rooms and at swimming pools to avoid fungus rampant in these areas.
16. Wear shoes that fit. If your toes are hitting the top of your shoes they're more likely to cause trauma to your toenails making it much easier for fungus to set up shop.