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5 Effects Running has on Your Body

Being a runner is a lifestyle, and once you feel that runner’s high, it’s an easy commitment. Running is an incredible workout that requires mental and physical endurance. Even in tip-top shape, running can still produce problems for athletes. Here are five examples of the harm running can have on your body.

Blisters/Black Toenails

After a long run, it’s not uncommon to find sore spots on your feet or even a blackish-blue toenail. While not uncommon, these aren’t good signs either. Blisters and irregular colored toenails are an indicator that your shoes aren’t the right fit for you. When buying running shoes, you should always take a proper foot measurement and mechanics test. Your shoes might seem slightly big at first, but because your feet tend to swell during a run, this is for the best. Wearing the right shoes and socks can decrease your chances of developing blisters or black toenails--which tend to fall off.

Bone Spurs

If you begin to experience pain on the top of your foot, swelling, or difficulty standing (let alone running) you may be experiencing a bone spur. Injuries, improper footwear, and even obesity are causes of bone spurs and can generate discomfort, plus, you’ll need to stop running to treat the problem. To prevent a bone spur from growing, invest in good shoes with extra.


Experiencing chafing skin is like experiencing rug burn--it’s uncomfortable and painful. If you simply have dry skin, you might start to feel itchy, but chafing is different. Chafing is caused by clothes rubbing against your skin, especially the chest, armpits, thighs, and groin, or, places where you sweat. Because sweat and rain intensify the possibility of chafing, it’s important to wear appropriate clothing when you run. Sweat-wicking tops are much more sensible than scratchy alternatives. If you are prone to chafing, try using vaseline or a body glide in those areas to prevent it.

Sore Throat

When the air is dry, whether you are running indoors or outdoors, it can cause chest tightening, coughing, and scratchy throats. These symptoms are especially noticeable during the colder months because the air is drier, even in gyms where the air inside is overheated. If you are running in humidity and are still experiencing throat pain, it may be due to dehydration and breathing out of your mouth. Whether it’s dry air or dehydration, be sure to drink plenty of water and suck on a cough drop if you need to.

Mind Tricks

Running marathons and long-distance races is an insane workout and effort to build endurance. However, endurance efforts can also result in your mind playing tricks on you. People have experienced things from flashing spots in their vision to fainting. Some of these issues are simply due to repetitive running, though sometimes they are caused by a larger issue like dehydration, low blood sugar, or heat. Runners should be well-hydrated while they run and should be prepared with electrolytes or energy gels if they feel weak.

Running comes with some less than spectacular side-effects, but it’s the same with any sport. However, if you know the risks, you can work to prevent them or be aware of the symptoms when they show. Even with the potential to chafe and get blisters, running is worth it.


About the author

Hannah Anderson

Hannah is from Logandale, Nevada and enjoys reading World War II novels, being outdoors, cooking and spending time with her husband. She loves working with other people and seeing progress on all types of projects.

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