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toe issue, help?

tygab2010-05-01 23:13:44 +0000 #1
Hi all,

thought I'd get your input on an issue. In a thinly veiled effort to improve my running for tris I have been training for a 1/2 marathon in may - I figured it'd make me run a lot more, plus I can't even consider a HIM without understanding the running part... Despite some setbacks along the way, it's been mostly going well.

Well, I have this weird problem where my second toenail is getting all yucky, raised, and looks darker underneat. And it hurts, but not while I run, after. I assume it is a bruise, and I also think it means I am going to lose the nail if I keep doing whatever bad thing I am doing to it. FWIW, the tops of my second toes are also toughening. I have done some preliminary searches which suggest this may be a shoe size issue (too small).

Anyone here have experience with this, and is there anything I can do in the short term (approx 2 weeks) before I can get to a proper running store to see if they fit me to new shoes?
RoadBunner2010-05-01 23:24:24 +0000 #2
Aaah, the black toenail

This develops from your toe hitting the front/top of your shoe when you run. I've heard of and have had moderate success with changing to a shoe with a larger toe box. Go to your local running store and let them know your problem. I had a pair of shoes that gave me black toenails during training and switched to a different one that never gave me a problem. So I think it is definitely a shoe-fit issue. My current model never gives me black toenails during training (even 20+ milers), but during the last two marathons I've gotten three (lost one completely, one is now hanging on halfway and the third is likely just going to have to grow out).

I haven't tried this, but maybe it will work for you:
tygab2010-05-01 23:44:29 +0000 #3
Hmm, thanks! That is a cool laces trick!

I don't feel like the toe is hitting the top of the shoe, but maybe? It feels more like it is digging into the sole, but as I said it doesn't really hurt while I run, just when I stop. So it's hard to say what I am doing while running that is causing this.

Do you have to do anything to a toe that is regrowing the nail? Not having this before I am imagining all sorts of other problems that could happen.
emily_in_nc2010-05-02 00:24:34 +0000 #4
I got black toenail on my left big toe after just a couple times wearing a pair of running shoes that were too small in the toe box and the same size as I normally wear in street shoes. I learned a lot researching that -- one thing is that I need to buy running shoes at least 1/2 size larger than street shoes. It took nearly a year for the toenail to become "normal" again, since it was the big toe (it never fell completely off, thankfully), and I've never had a recurrence.

Google "black toenail" for much more information. New shoes are the first order of business, as others have said. Good luck!

stacy2010-05-02 00:26:04 +0000 #5
Last fall I ran/walked a 10 km. My second toes on both feet were black when I took off my shoes. I spoke to my dr and he said I likely curl my toes under when running and that he had lost all 10 toenails after his first run. His suggestion was to train myself to keep my toes relaxed while running. I lost both toenails but was pleased to find when they had fallen off that I had two lovely new nails underneath that looked wonderful!
yellow2010-05-01 23:50:20 +0000 #6
Sometimes I would get discolored toenails if my sock was wonky or who knows what. But you'd never know it because I use the disguise of polish. With Shanghai Shimmer, they always look good (even if they are black underneath)!

(yeah, the trails are a little dusty around these here parts...)



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