Tuesday, 22 February 2011

22nd February 2011

       Gels and Lotions, part one.

             Had a day relaxing, after two weeks just cycling, last nights race walk left me feeling a little stiff in the muscles, so a days rest then another go tomorrow. Applying some creams and lotions which help, psychologically as well as physically. Some things are proven as effective, some offer aloe vera, camomile, lavender etc, which, at the very least, should make you smell like an old people's home as you plod through the night. There are anti chaffing creams, muscle rubs, heat and cold creams. Vaseline is good for chaffing but is oil based, so it can ruin clothes (my 2008 Hull City shirt has two oily patches on the nipple area which won't wash out!) and when smeared over the skin can stop sweat from escaping, which can cause the body temperature to rise and lose hydration.
 There are good ones on the market, I've used the bodyglide anti-chafe (above) during the last two Parish walks and it is effective. Google it for prices, about 7 quid including delivery. There is also the Natures Kiss anti-chafe (below, similar prices) which I also use, and it has added stuff that hippies burned in the sixties. It's not bad, does the job well, and is kind to clothes and skin.

              Part of the first aid kit and probably a good idea to be carried on long training walks should be an anti inflammatory such as Ibuleve cream, or Ibugel forte which is my personal choice, slightly stronger. These contain Ibuprofen so you should be careful if you're taking Ibuprofen tablets not to overdose.
          Deep Heat is good for warming up muscles (it does exactly what it says on the tin!) and allowing bloodflow to stiff muscles. 

         Feet. During the 2008 very very wet and windy Parish, I liberally coated my feet with vaseline to keep my feet dry, on the advice of a woman on manx radio who said it was going to be wet and suggested ways to keep the feet dry. this was good, and I did it for the last two years, although, as I said earlier, it is oil based, can cause overheating and stop the skin breathing. I now use Morgan Blue.

           It's like a jelly, but smell of hospitals. (Hospital flavoured jelly, pudding in an NHS hospital?) I used it for the End to End in september and it worked a treat. It's a medicated foot cooling gel developed for runners, helping to keep the feet cool, reduce swelling, so stop rubbing. Also, being medicated, helps prevent (only helps, doesn't completely prevent) blisters. A big tub lasts for ages! about 8 quid. I order all my stuff at once from Wiggle.com, but if you ask at your local sports shop they may get it in stock for you.

         One last one for now, my favourite post training muscle rub, also from Nature's Kiss.
        there are many types of muscle rubs avaiilable, try a few out and pick your favourite.

        All in all, you probably need a first aid kit to keep all these things in. Later on I'll go through my first aid kit and itemize everything to give you some idea of what to carry. I've not even started on Savlon, sun cream, insect bite cream and all the other bits and pieces. It's a good job we're allowed to bring a back up vehicle or else we'd end up pushing wheelbarrows for the 85 miles!

    Till next time.


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