5 chafing nightmares runners should avoid

Running is challenging enough BEFORE you add chafing into the mix. Stop the dreaded runner's rub in its tracks with our top anti-chafe tips...

5 chafing nightmares runners should avoid

Nipple rub

Introducing the silent daddy of chafing; your poor nipples won't see this one coming. When your vest or top becomes wet with sweat, the motion of running can lead to serious friction; blood, blisters and all. Most of you will have witnessed bleeding-nipple syndrome during a race, when an unsuspecting chap neglects to tape up his nipples and is left with two red lines. It can affect the ladies too, so make sure you prevent this one at all costs.

Prevention: A couple of circular plasters should be enough to protect sensitive nipples, or liberally apply vaseline for shorter races. You can also buy specific nipple guards if you're feeling fancy, although you may be left with a tear in your eye when you lose half of your chest hair after pulling the buggers off six hours later. But weighed up we would gladly take the hair loss.

The underarm-er

Be it directly underneath your armpit or next to your chest, this truly ruthless chafe can happen with any item of run kit, although it's a more common problem when wearing cotton or longer sleeves. After a few hours a simple rub can start to feel like sandpaper and may seriously affect your race, so stop it in its tracks.

Prevention: As well as the old faithful lubricant (from Bodyglide to a petroleum jelly such as Vaseline), avoid cotton like the plague, and if you're planning to be out for a while de-sweat and take a warm, dry top to change into half way through your run. 

Inner thighs

Your poor unsuspecting pins won't realise this has happened until you step in the shower and let out a blood curdling squeal. This one can be hard to heal as you wear every day clothing and continue to run, so try to avoid any anguish to your inner thighs at all costs.    

Prevention: Lather up your inner legs with an extra strong running lube. Some runners prefer talcum powder; experiment and see what works best for you. If you know you’re going to be on the road for a long time, wearing a pair of running leggings is an easy preventative, as is finding a pair of well-fitted shorts that cover the widest part of your inner leg where your legs brush against one another. 

Sports bra rub

Ladies, you are probably all too familiar with sports bra sweat and know full well how it can leave you with a sore red line around the top of your waistline. Not only is this painful, it's not easy to heal as you continue to wear your bra each day and, quite frankly, your bosom deserves all the TLC it can get.

Prevention: Make sure your sports bra fits correctly, with as little movement as possible during your run. If you're not sure, get it professionally fitted at a running store. Line the elasticated rim of your sports bra with lube and run to your heart's content.

Sore feet

From painful blisters on your toes to rubbing your ankles raw, runner's feet often take the brunt of the miles, but this doesn't have to be the case. 

Prevention: First things first, make sure your shoes fit correctly, Sweatshop will be able to help with this. Secondly - invest in technical running socks. These will prevent blistering with sweat-wicking fabric and provide cover to key areas with more fabric.

If your poor feet are regularly rubbing in one spot, be sure to smother your toes in plasters. Coating your feet in a thin layer of petroleum jelly has also been known to help, but try this out on shorter runs first. 

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