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Black toe nails...! (Read 1306 times)

    Guys I need some advice. Both of my second toes have gone black and have obvious blood beneath the nail - what can I do about it? How do I avoid it in the future? Anyone else get this?


    Needs more cowbell!

      I've heard about this. What causes it? Is this just something a person gets when they start running really high miles each week? I'm kinda scared to get the whole ugly runner's feet thing.

      I shoot pretty things! ~

      '14 Goals:

      • 2 olympic distance duathlons -- 6 days apart -- PR at least 1

      • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

      Mile Collector


      Abs of Flabs

        Black toenails and blisters are signs that your shoes are not properly fitting you. Black toenails are caused by not having enough room in the toe box. As you decelerate, your foot moves forward inside of the shoe, and jamming your toes towards the front. If you do this several thousand times, you'll get black toenails. I'm not sure of the exact cause of blisters (other than the obvious friction). It could be having a shoe that's too wide or narrow. In the latter case, your toes are all jammed together, thus increasing friction between them. Your feet also expand more as you spend more time on your feet. Having a shoe that's too wide allows too much movement, which would cause blisters and calluses. Having technical socks will help because they closely wrap around the contours of your feet. The end result is that they move with your feet inside the shoes, so the friction is between the socks and the shoes instead of your feet and socks. The most important is to find a pair of shoes that will fit you properly and it makes a huge difference.
          To add to Mile Collector, the pinched toes may be the result of ill-fitting shoes; either wrong size, or correct size but does not match your foot shape properly. Be sure you have enough room in the toe box (but too much) which sometimes differs among brands.

          Discipline is never an end in itself, only a means to an end. (RF)


          Needs more cowbell!

            Speaking of blisters, several months after getting my shoes I started to get a small blister on ONE foot, on the inside side, just below the ball of my foot. It seemed to start right around the time my runs got beyond the 3-4 mile marker. Since it's just one small spot I use Moleskin on it for my longer runs. For shorter ones I don't bother. I now have a little bit of a callus that I can feel, so it doesn't blister as easily. Other than that my feet are still mostly pretty (as much as long-toed wide feet can be, LOL). Big grin k

            I shoot pretty things! ~

            '14 Goals:

            • 2 olympic distance duathlons -- 6 days apart -- PR at least 1

            • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

            Mile Collector


            Abs of Flabs

              Other than that my feet are still mostly pretty
              That gives me an idea. You should do a survey on how runners perceive their feet. For example, what percentage of the running population have messed up feet (e.g. blisters, calluses, black toe nails, missing toe nails). What do runners think of their feet, using an artificial scale such as from "1. podiatrists would only examine my feet over the phone" to "10. My feet was on the cover of Foot Fetish World".
                Big toe left foot upper part of the nail is black from the 6 May half marathon walk and the nail right below that spot looks a sick white. BOTH feet have all ten toes but the middle toe on each foot is bent so much you can't see the nail. Have you ever noticed that one foot (in my case my right foot) is the one that is ALWAYS the problem? I mean even to keeping that show lace tied

                To paraphrase an old poster: Today is the first day of the rest of your training. It doesn’t matter where you started or how far you’ve come. Today is the day. Your training didn’t start 6 weeks ago. Your training started the last time you hit the road. John “the Penguin” Bingham Life is not tried, it is merely survived if you're standing outside the fire

                  Hey Purdey, One more point on the blackened toe nail---sometimes it just happens without any probems with the shoes at all. My last experience went away and did not return without any changes to my shoes. So don't give you shoes to your hound to chew on just yet, be sure there is a fit problem first. John

                  Discipline is never an end in itself, only a means to an end. (RF)

                  Mile Collector


                  Abs of Flabs

                    Another point is that when you're buying new shoes, make sure you jog around in them. Most people's feet are of different sizes, so having a perfect fit in one shoe does not mean it'll fit on the other foot.
                      Thanks to all of you. I think I may have narrowed the problem down to one particular pair of shoes - I'll give them a rest and see if the problem clears up.
                        It seems I'm a little late with the advice, but before trying new shoes, try different ways of lacing up. If your foot is sliding, simple heel-lock lacing could fix the problem. Here's a link to a new balance site showing different lacing techniques. I hope this helps. http://www.newbalance.com/productbrowser/performance/lacing_for_a_better_fit.html?sport=Running&gender=&product_type=&feature=
                          Well the offending toe nails have now fallen off.....
                          anitajo


                            I kept having this problem with the same second toe and a friend suggested going up 1/2 size and so far, so good!
                              Sorry - I saw this a bit late. Hope I can contribute something new to this subject If the problem is always on your second toe then in all probability you have a "Morton's Foot" (like me). This is a physiological abnormality that many of us have where the metatarsal of the second toe is unusually long compared to the first and means that when your foot is flat (as at footstrike in running) your second toe is longer than your big toe. Black toes have been a constant problem for me as I increase distance as most running shoe sizing and toe-boxes don't take account of this and your second toe often bangs into a seam in the shoe upper where ther had appeared to be plenty of room! I see the shoe sizing issue has been well covered in this thread, but a Mortons Foot can produce other problems that, Purdey, you should consider if indeed you do have the condition and are looking to increase mileage. The most notable of these is an imbalance in the mechanics of the foot which leads to1) over-pronation; 2)ankle problems and 3) worst of all - constant achilles tendon problems. Arch supports help a bit as do heel lifts. There are many websites which refer to the condition and a good place to start is (believe it or not) mortonsfoot.com. Your choice of running shoe should definitely be influenced by this knowledge. I recently strayed from my normal "safe" ASICS 2100 series motion control shoe to a pair of Mizuno Nirvanas and despite the fact that they are sold as stability shoes, a 9 mile run in them has flared up my ankles and tendons quite seriously and at my age recovery is quite slow. Much Ice and anti-inflammatories! Good Luck Charlie
                                Charlie - very, very useful thank you. I will find out if I have "Morton's Foot". If I do, I will try to give it back to him. Tom.
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