Running tip #60
Socks matter. More often than you think, it is poor sock choice that begins a cycle of injury. For example, a too-thin sock (like the polyester pair you hurriedly grabbed out of your dress-sock drawer) that causes you to slip around inside your “professionally fitted” running shoe, can make your plantar fascia work overtime – micro-gripping with every step to hold your foot in place – which can then make your achilles tendons tight, which can then cause your calve muscles to pull too hard where they are attached to the shins, etc (just like in the Dem Bones song … the ankle bone connected to the leg bone, the leg bone connected to the knee bone … ). The slippery sock can also force your stabilizing muscles to be overused, resulting in potential i.t. band inflammatory issues at both the knee and hip attachment sites.
A too-thick sock, which essentially makes your shoe a quarter size too small for your foot, has its own set of problems: bruised toes, Morton’s neuroma, plantar fasciitis, achilles tendonitis, and general tightness from shortening your stride length to accommodate the lack of room in your toe-box with every foot-strike.
For running tip #60, I say choose your socks wisely and rotate them with intention. Though pricey, I prefer Balega socks over all others and if you switch your left and right socks back-and-forth each time you wear them, you can extend the life of those expensive socks to prevent a hole in the toe or an injury in the making.