Last summer, my brothers in-law and a friend ran a 100 mile trail race. During that race, my family and I had the opportunity to be their crew! Basically that meant helping them at certain aid stations, re-stocking their hydration and fuel packs, changing their shoes for them, and blister care (for me anyways).
After the race, our friend who ran with my brothers in-law decided she wanted to do ANOTHER 100 miler! However, she knew I wouldn’t be there to help piece her together and take care of her blisters. So, she asked me what the best materials she should use to compile a ‘blister kit’! I agree with her that every ultra runner should have an emergency blister/first aid kit either in their hydration pack, or in their drop bags at aid stations. Proper care of your blisters can often be the difference between a successful race, and a DNF(did not finish).
Some things you’ll want to get for blister care are:
1) Second skin squares. You can find these online through amazon, or they are probably at any of your local running or cycling stores. You put the piece of second skin directly over your blister. Prior to applying the second skin, make sure the skin is dry, and if you have any type of adhesive spray (I use Tuff skin), spray that over the area to help the blister padding stick.
2) Bandaids. I prefer the “knuckle” ones because they can work for well for the toes!. Apply the bandaid directly over the piece of second skin.
3) Cover roll or Omnifix. I’m sure there are other brand names for it, but basically it’s a very sticky, white, stretchy material that is awesome for blisters! You cut a piece of it to the desired length, the peel off the paper backing and apply it over the bandaid.
4) If you are not a huge sweater, this may be enough just by itself. However, if you sweat a lot, or if this is a looooong race, it’s best to use some stretchy tape over top of the Cover roll. The stretchy tape I usually use is called “lightplast”, but you can also use Jaybird stretch athletic tape.
You will want to wrap this tape around the foot completely covering the Cover roll. Now, if you are covering blisters on your toes, this tape is not recommended. Just use the Cover roll and wrap a strip of it around your toe, and you’ll be fine!
I hope this helps you ultra runners (or even non ultra runners or triathletes who are just prone to getting blisters)! Let me know if you have any questions about how to best take care of (or prevent) your blisters!