Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Blisters; how to prevent and treat them.


Blisters are a common foot problem for runners. Caused by friction, heat, dirt, moisture, and shoes that are too small, blisters are small bubbles of skin that are typically filled with clear fluid. Some blisters are painless; others are extremely painful, forcing you to discontinue your run.  

 “Friction causes layers of skin to separate and foot blisters are the painful pockets of air or fluid that form between the layers,” says Lori Weisenfeld, M.D., a New York City sports podiatrist.

Animated pic used to spare you from totally gruesome blister pics online. 

To avoid blisters, which, according to running.about.com, “ are usually caused by friction, typically between skin and sock,” and excessive moisture due to sweaty feet or wet conditions, avoid running in wet shoes or during heavy rain, and be sure to use socks made specifically for running. Socks should be made of synthetic fabrics, not cotton, to wick moisture away from your feet and prevent the sock from bunching up. Socks should also be smooth and seamless. For an additional layer of protection, consider coating problem areas with a layer of Body Glide or Vaseline, or covering “hot spots” on your feet with carefully applied moleskin, a softer, more breathable bandage alternative.  

Wearing running shoes that are too small, or otherwise ill-fitting, or tied too tight can also cause blisters, so be sure to make sure your shoes fit properly. Since your feet swell when you run, running shoes should be at least a half size larger than your regular shoes and should have extra room in the toe box.  Break in new shoes slowly and consider wearing them around the house for a few days before running in them to determine if they are rubbing anywhere.

Calluses provide blister protection for your feet so, if you go for a pedicure, be sure calluses are not removed with a razor or emery board; doing so, running.about.com warns, could put you at a greater risk for blisters.

Doing this can increase your risk of blisters and infection

If you already have a blister, to pop or not to pop is always the question.  If the blister is not painful, simply leave it alone; it will eventually break and drain and, meanwhile, the skin serves as protection and prevents infection.  If the blister is painful or debilitating, or if you need to drain a blister so you can continue with the activity that caused the blister, you need to do so in a clean, sterile and safe manner.

Use a sterile needle to pierce a blister where it meets the skin

Sterilize a needle by boiling it for several minutes or, wash it with soap and water and then rub with alcohol. Clean the area around the blister and carefully piece the blister where it meets the skin, allowing the fluid to drain out. Leave the remaining skin intact, apply an antibiotic cream, and cover with gauze and moleskin or a Band Aid to provide cushioning and help prevent infection. Change your bandage daily and allow the area to air dry when possible. Womenshealthmag.com notes that the deeper the blister, the longer it will take to heal.
Although blisters are common and most are easy to treat, if you feel uncomfortable treating it on your own or suspect that the blister may be infected, contact your local podiatrist for professional assistance. 

Keep your feet happy! Happy feet = happy runner!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Boston breaks our hearts but not our spirit

Once again, our nation, our people, our way of life has come under attack. Another cowardly act of anger and hatred has killed and injured our citizens. My heart goes out to the people of Boston, to the athletes who worked so hard to make it to the starting line of one of our nation’s premiere running events, to the friends and family members who supported their loved ones through months of training and were there on the sidelines to cheer them on and celebrate their accomplishment, to the race organizers and to the aid workers who acted quickly and courageously to tend to our fallen.


What must go through the addled mind of someone who perpetuates such an unspeakable act of devastation? What does that person hope to accomplish through such a senseless act of violence and destruction? Perhaps these lost and misled souls are confused by who we are, angered by the way we live, and filled with hatred over what we possess—freedom.

Have they forgotten that this is the land of the free and the home of the brave? We are a nation of people who are resilient and strong and, despite our shortcomings and our complaints about the government and the economy, we are, at our core, grateful for all we have and proud of who we are. We are free to vote, travel, work, worship, celebrate, live and love as we choose. And though we are free to go, we stay, for we know there is no better place on earth to be, and we fight for what is right and just in hopes of making the world a better place for all.

And among the brave, strong and courageous people of our nation are our athletes—some of who had trained and sacrificed for months to earn the right to run in Boston on Monday—men and women who are disciplined and determined, who are not afraid of pain or failure, and who welcome challenge and adversity with open arms.

So if the cowards of the world think that by crashing our airplanes and detonating explosives they can make us live in fear and prevent us from pursuing our dreams, then they simply do not understand that our power and strength comes from within, and though what happened at Boston surely breaks our hearts, it will not break our spirit.

In the aftermath of Boston, Americans will unite as we always do in times of crisis. We will lift each other up and stand together against hatred and terrorism, protecting the freedom and liberties we cherish and seeking justice for those who mistakenly think they can take it away. And those who earn the privilege of running in Boston next year will not only run in pursuit of their own dreams, but in honor of all those who ran before them and on behalf of those who no longer can, and they will cross the finish line victorious and triumphant over evil. 


Monday, April 15, 2013

A Look Back at 2012, Part 2

So, the first quarter of 2013 has flown by and I'm just now getting around to recapping the last half of 2012. But, better late than never, I guess, as it's always a good thing to look back on where you've been, what you've done, how far you've come and how much fun you had along the way! 

July 2012

Tri Daughter #1 was selected to join the Joey D Cares Rock Orchestra. The group is made up of 6th graders - adults who play concerts for charity. TD1's first gig with the group raised $10,000 for the Wounded Warrior Project. Rock on! 

All three Tri Daughters competed in their second youth triathlon of the season.
Here they are in action:
TD2 on the swim: 

TD3 heading out of T1: 

TD1 on the run: 

The whole family post-race and pre-feast:

August 2012

TD1's next JDC gig was for the National Night Out: 

Then our family was off to the Outer Banks for some much-needed R & R!

Triathlon Family 

TD1 got to bring a friend this year! Welcome, C, to the beach!

The whole crew--7 of us are triathletes and 1 is about to be!

Me & Tri Dad

Time for more fun in the sun at the 16th annual Grab A Crab: 

Sunset on the Bay 
The 2012 Grab A Crab Crew

North East Triathlon was next: 
Tri Dad took 3rd in division 

All smiles after a first-place divisional finish

Celebrating the Olympic-distance tri Olympic style!

Post-race celebration 

September 2012

Our last race of the season was at the Chesapeake Man Endurance Festival--a 75.2-mile race

Me & Tri Dad post-race

Tri Dad finished 3rd in division 

I snagged first in my division :)


Finish Chute

Tri Dad bike 

See how much fun triathlon is?

Happy with my race!

Tri Dad finishing the swim 

Great feeling!

Tri Dad heading to the finish 

Beard and mustache compliments of the Choptank 

Swim Start/Finish 

September 2012

TD2 got her braces off

9 mos to straight teeth--amazing! I wore a full metal jacket for 2.5 years! 




Ready for action!
October 2012

Fun & relaxing girls weekend to Deep Creek Lake

Fab 5 at Mountain State Brewing Company 

Hiking at Swallow Falls State Park 

Muddy Creek Falls 
October 2012 

Halloween & Jamaica, Mon!

3 Goth girls, a Jamaican and a cat

JAMAICA! (Need I say more?)

November 2012

TD3 has been going to gymnastics since, well, since I was carting her around in a Baby Bjorn at her sisters' classes. She's now the last one standing (on her head) in gymnastics and was selected to be part of an accelerated group taught by the gym's owner (the fiery red-head pictured below).

TD3 is right at home standing on her head!
TD1's final JDC gig of year was at the Kennedy Krieger Institute Festival of Trees event.

ITB problems ended my tentative bid for the OBX Marathon. New shoes (and three months of stretching & rest) to the rescue!
New shoes!
Thanksgiving with family from Indiana
Tri Daughters & Tri Dog with cousins from Indiana 
December 2013
Our tree came with a little something extra--we are still waiting for it to hatch . . .
Praying mantis nest!

Tri Dog

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.

New favorite mug . . . 
. . . until Santa brought me this one!

Tri Daughter 2 gives the trumpet a try . . .

TD2 at her first band concert

Meeting Crowie!

TD2 thought Crowie was a cutie :)

At the Festival of Trees, we met a local artist and loved his work. These two awesome paintings now give our wall a much-needed pop of color!

Love the blue

Grab A Crab anyone? 

Three happy girls on Christmas morning: 

Tri Dog is happy, too!

Snow on Christmas Day 

Celebrating with cousins from Mississippi

Merry Christmas to all!

And best wishes for the  New Year!
New Year's Eve