FIXING YOUR FEET E-zine – Calluses, My Best Ever Blister Patch, and much more

August 30, 2007 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Foot Care, Footwear, Health, Sports, Travel 


Volume 7, Issue 8, August 2007
John Vonhof, Footwork Publications
Copyright, August 2007, All rights reserved


The editorial this month is Are Calluses Really Bad? My feature article
is My Best Blister Patch Job Ever, about my most challenging blister
repair job in years. There is a bad feet photo and remedy, another bad
feet photo and story, information on a new gaiter strap, feedback on
the staph infection articles from last month, feedback from Badwater
runners, and an idea of what to do with the shoes you no longer use.


The Fixing Your Feet E-zine is published monthly to inform and educate
athletes and non-athletes about proper foot care skills and techniques,
provide tips on foot care, review foot care products, and highlight
problems people have with their feet.

Read more

My Calluses and Callus Care

August 28, 2007 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Footcare, Footwear, Health, Sports, Travel 

For the past five weeks or so I have been working on reducing my calluses. Now, truth be told, I do not have thick calluses like some people I have seen. My running has gone to zip, nada, nothing with my health issues, so my feet don’t get trashed. With luck, in a year, I will be back to running and working my way back to ultras.
     So my usual routine has been to use my callus file every evening, followed with an application of a lotion. Some days, I apply the lotion in the morning and again in the evening. During this time, I have spent quite a bit of time in flip-flops.
     My heels have gone from rough to smooth with this simple exercise. Next time, I will talk more about the lotions I used. Today though, I want to stress the importance of continued care. The last five days I have been busy and have not taken the time to file and apply the lotion. Tonight I checked my heels and noticed they had become rougher with the obvious edge of a small callus starting to form. Much of these five days I have been barefoot and in flip-flops.
     So, out came the file and lotion. In 60 seconds I had filed the rough spots and in another 60 seconds had applied the lotion. Two minutes is all it takes.
     If you want the skin on your feet to be soft and supple, that’s about what it takes. Two minutes in the morning or evening.

Callous Files – Should You Buy One?

August 14, 2007 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Footcare, Footwear, Health, Sports, Travel 

How many callous files do you own? One? None? I have three.
     Why, you might ask, should I have a callus file? Good question and, thanks for asking.
     In the last two major events where I have helped patch feet, calluses been a large contributor in foot problems for athletes whose feet I have patched. For these athletes, their calluses, particularly on their heels, led to bad blisters. Even though the heels are a common area of blistering, feet with heel calluses tend to blister faster, and have larger blisters.
     So, that’s where a callous file comes in. Regular callous filing, when used in conjunction with a callous reducing cream or ointment, is important to healthy feet. I have one inexpensive, $4.00 callous file I purchased at a local drug store. It is flat on both sides, with one coarser than the other, and is fairly flexible. It works well.
    My second file is single sided, stiff, and the file part is curved. This curve is helpful to follow the curve of a heel. I’d guess I paid about $7.00 from an online store.
41300l    My third file is interesting. It resembles a small cheese grater with a handle. The grate part is 1 inch wide by 2.5 inches in length. One side is fine, with the other side is coarse. I bought it from Medco Sports Medicine for less than $5.00. I like this file.
     If you have lightly calloused feet, a simple file works well.  However if you have thick calluses, I’d suggest a stronger file – one like the cheese grater design in the picture. This file will work faster on the thick dead callus.
     After filing, apply a liberal coating of a callous remover cream or ointment. We’ll be talking more about these in the weeks ahead.


August 4, 2007 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Footcare, Footwear, Health, Sports, Travel 

In June I patched feet of adventure racers at the Raid the North Extreme in northern BC Canada. In July I patched feet of ultrarunners at the Badwater Ultramarathon in Death Valley, CA.  One common denominator on many athletes’ feet was their calluses.
     Those of you who have followed me for a while know I am not a fan of calluses. Over the years I have Img_2611patched too many blisters underneath calluses, and been unable to patch many more. The reason is that calluses are hardened layers of skin, caused by friction, often from poorly fitting footwear. Calluses also are quite common in the summer when people use sandals, flip-flops, or go barefoot.
     These calluses can crack, and these skin cracks, called fissures, have to heal from the inside out – and can be painful. The skin inside can easily become infected.
     Over the next month, I will be trying several callus creams, callus remover, and other skin repair ointments. I am enlisting the help of several friends, including my wife, to also try some of the products.
     One-by-one, I will talk about these products and share how they worked. I will also share a few stories, including one horror story of calluses, how they affect athletes in their sports, and a bit on how I patch them. Stay tuned.

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