Saturday, 28 July 2012

It's a three-patch problem

The first year, I ran in my fivefingers, I did so without socks. This hurt, especially on 15k+ runs. It also caused all sorts of problems, from painful calluses to blisters that refused to heal before my next run. After about a year, I came to the conclusion that it wasn't that my feet needed toughening up. A layer of fabric will always help in reducing the friction between shoes and skin. After I had finally bought a pair of toe-socks - which helped a great deal - I still got calluses on the sides of my feet during longer runs. Yet another year later, I decided to try and find some Engo patches.

It's taken some time - and a long and rocky path, including a de-tour to Australia - but my Engo patches have arrived. Engo patches help to reduce friction between the inside of a shoe and the feet. What you do is you stick them into the inside of the shoe and the smooth upper layer takes away any friction between the foot and the fabric inside of the shoe.

I applied patches to the insides of both shoes (the outside of the ball of my foot) and on the outside of my left shoe (the wear to the shoe tends to cause blisters). Though I have done only three or four runs with the patches in my shoes, the difference is clear from the beginning. Anyone that has any sort of issues with blistering, hot-spots or calluses should give these a try:

In the words of Sherlock (the recent BBC incarnation), my blisters issue was a three-patch problem.


  1. Hi
    I used to do this with a product called moleskin in the UK. I have just bought some Vivo Neo Trails which are the first pair of shoes that i have ever been able to run in confidently without socks.

    1. Hi Chris,

      Thank you for the tip! I will go and have a look for both the Moleskin patches and the Vivo Neo Trails.

      Safe running!