Oh summer running you sure do challenge us in so many ways. If heat and oppressive humidity does not do you in, chafing just might. Chafe happens to all of us at some point. How can we minimize it? How can we find relief once we get it?
Chafing is the irritation of skin to the point of soreness and tenderness. Sometimes this abrasion can lead to bleeding or infection.
Why do we chafe when running?
Most commonly chafing while running is due to skin on skin rubbing. This happens frequently on inner thighs and upper arms. Irritation also occurs from skin repeatedly rubbing against clothing such as hem lines, sports bra straps, hydration packs or phone sleeves. Chafing can happen to runners of all shapes and sizes and has nothing to do with weight.
Why does it happen more in the summer time?
Wearing less clothing creates more potential areas for irritation to occur. We sweat more in the summer heat and that moisture on our skin contributes to more rubbing. Running in the rain or with wet clothes also leads to potential chafing.
What can you do to reduce chafing?
Wear sweat wicking clothes that help to keep the moisture off of your body and stay away from cotton. Cutting tags out of your shirts and wearing compression shorts will help to alleviate rubbing. Make sure to wear properly fitting sports bras that will stay in place while you move.
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Pre-treat your chafing hot spots
Taking a few pre run actions can help to prevent chafing. Moisture is not your friend. Using a simple product such as baby powder on sports bra straps and inner thighs does a fantastic job of reducing moisture. That is the reason why it is used for diaper rash in infants. Petroleum jelly and products like Aquafor help to create a protective barrier. There are some products that are made specifically for runners and Body Glide for her is very effective. If you having chafing in sensitive groin areas (as many cyclists and runners do), Butt’r is specifically designed to help. I’ve used it for years for cycling and love it. (This post contains affiliate links)
How to treat chafing after it happens
Chafe happens sometimes despite our best efforts. Stepping into the shower and discovering that you have chafed is so painful. It is important to clean the area with a gentle soap first. One of the best ways to treat it is to use a diaper rash creme. Yup it’s a similar malady. Petroleum jelly is also a great option and very soothing.
Chafe happens to all of us at some point. Tell me, what are your hot spots? How do you prevent it?
Thanks for helping to make the Runners’ Roundup a huge success by visiting all of the hosts: Me, Debbie, Rachel, Jen , Sandra and Lisa