How to Prevent Chafing During Your First Marathon
Are you getting ready to run a marathon but don't know how to prevent chafing?
Chafing is a problem that every serious runner has to deal with. Not only can be painful, but if you don't take the right steps to prevent it, you might hinder your ability to perform at your best.
This is why it's important to know about the best techniques for preventing chafing before it happens. If you want to know more, read on and we'll tell you what you need to know.
What Chafing Is and Why It Happens
Chafing happens when the skin gets irritated from excessive friction and rubbing. It sometimes occurs if you're wearing a piece of clothing that doesn't fit correctly. It might be an accessory you're wearing that's causing the problem. It could also happen with one of your body parts rubs against another part.
Anything that creates friction against the skin might injure it or make it sore. The condition is sometimes mild and it's sometimes severe. In worst-case scenarios, the skin sometimes starts to bleed. This becomes a problem if it happens when you're in the middle of running a marathon.
Ways to Prevent Marathon Chafing
You'll probably barely notice chafing once it starts. As you run farther, you'll probably start developing blisters. Some athletes whose skin is less sensitive can only run for several hours before the condition develops. If you have delicate skin, chafing during a marathon might start within a matter of minutes.
Wear the Right Clothing
Before you try anything else, you should focus on finding clothes that fit correctly. This is because you'll probably have clothing on most parts of your body. This means that it might start rubbing some parts in the wrong way.
You should especially be strategic with what kinds of clothing you wear if you have sensitive skin. Be sure to cover all delicate parts such as your legs and armpits with clothing that doesn't have seams and this fits snuggly.
Most athletic clothing is made for you to wear without using underpants. This is why you should consider not wearing them in a marathon. It's also essential that you get a pair of shoes that fits you correctly.
Lubricate All Sensitive Areas
If you're running a marathon in hot weather, it probably won't be possible for you to cover your body in tight-fitting clothing. This is why many athletes choose to apply lubricants.
Lubrication that you apply to your skin creates an additional layer. This layer minimizes the amount of friction. It also keeps your skin from getting irritated.
When you use lubrication, be sure to apply plenty of it to all areas that you think could start chafing. Any cream will work, but it's best to use lubricants that are oil-based.
There are many great products on the market that you can use to prevent chafing. You can also use coconut oil or petroleum jelly.
Apply Tape to Problem Areas
There are some circumstances where clothing and lubrication won't be able to resolve your issue. This is why it can be helpful to have a roll of tape at your disposal when you're preparing to run a marathon. Apply the tape to places on your body that you know are prone to getting blistered such as your nipples and thighs.
You should also not combine tape with lubrication. If you do this, the tape won't stick to your skin.
Keep the Moisture Away
Whether it be sweat, rain, humidity, or water, moisture will make chafing worse. This is why you should try to keep your feet as dry as you can. Stay away from water puddles and be careful when you're pouring water over yourself to cool down.
If you have a small pocket in your shorts or on your shirt, it's a good idea to bring a cloth along with you which you can use to wipe the moisture away from your body when you need to.
Shave With Care
When you shave you're likely to irritate your skin. Blades that rub against your skin can leave it red and with rashes for days. This is why it's a bad idea to shave in the days before you run a marathon.
If you do need to shave, consider using an electric trimmer instead of using a razor.
Keep Yourself Hydrated
When you're properly hydrated, the salt concentration of your sweat will be lower. This helps to prevent friction. Hydration is something that most people fail to take into consideration when they're trying to prevent chafing.
You should try to drink water every fifteen or twenty minutes while you're running a marathon. Try to drink around ten ounces every time.
Prevent Thigh Chafing With Thigh Bands
If you've had problems in the past with groin and thigh chafing, you should invest in a thigh band. The highest-quality thigh bands are made of synthetic microfibers and non-slip silicone.
Some of these bands are more comfortable than others. To figure out which kind is best for you, consider taking several different thigh bands out on test runs before the day of your marathon. You'll therefore know which works best by the time you need to run your race.
There Are Many Easy Ways to Prevent Chafing
The first thing you should do to prevent chafing is to choose the right clothing. You should also lubricate all sensitive areas of your body.
If there is a part of your body that you can't lubricate such as your nipples or armpits, consider covering them with tape. You should also stay hydrated and wear a thigh band if you're prone to thigh chafing.
Another easy way to protect your skin from chafing and blisters is by using all-natural, anti-chafe salves. Squirrel’s Nut Butter anti-chafe creates a slick barrier that is effective and will last for your entire marathon. Visit our shop to find out more about our great products.