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Posted: 3/28/2006 7:41:55 AM EDT
Hello,

Ive been in the Army Guard now for 4 years and was overseas for one of them, while overseas didnt do alot of rucking just small foot patrols etc.

In a nut shell, iam home now and iam rucking on my own to train up for infantry school and possibly more. I have two pairs of desert boots one is a 10R the other is a 10.5W, now the 10.5W feel to big and would always give me blisters under the ball of my foot on cross country rucks.
Wearing the 10R's due to the blisters from the other ones,I went on a ruck the other day planning on doing 12.5 miles with a 45lb pack, about 2 miles into it i felt the hotspots, went to three miles and stopped to check feet.
My pinky toe looked like dipped it in radiation or something, it had about 5 small blisters on it. My heal was starting to get chewed up too.
I started off again and hit 6 miles and had to stop, it felt like there was glass in my boot it was terrible.
The pinky toe ones went away but the one on my heal is the size of a quarter.
-Is it just the fact that the boots were not fully broken in? (have worn them off and on for months just in civilain life)
-What is a good way or time to break them in?
-How do you know what is your right boot size for rucking? (obviously you can try on boots and them feel good, but when u start moving that all changes)

Througout being in the military ive never had this problem, not even in bootcamp, i wont be rucking while i have this blister but i wanted some insight on what i could do.
My feet need to be ready for this infantry school. hug.gif
Thanks in advance.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 11:34:21 AM EDT
My feet never really got used to rucking. I just had to find the best pair of boots and suck it up. They will harden over time, but some of us weren't made to ruck.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 11:50:47 AM EDT
Yeah, the 6 years of skateboarding before my enlistment had pretty much turned my feet into solid calluses. And after getting frostbite in2000 I haven't really felt them since.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 11:57:52 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2006 12:00:33 PM EDT by Pointman_M4A1]
Moleskin is your friend!!!!!!!

put it on the "hotspots", get good socks, go get your foot measured and then get the proper sized boots. Break in your boots before you go out rucking.

As a grunt if you can't take care of your feet you are truly screwed.
(I and any other medic would be seriously pissed if we had to carry you and your shit plus all of ours, and the "treatment" for your feet would be far worse than the original pain)



DOC
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 12:28:25 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2006 12:50:08 PM EDT by justice23]
Dip your boots in scalding hot water. When you can stand it without burning yourself put them on then wear them until they are dry.

That was how I got my boots to fit properly. Then just keep rucking and then ruck some more.

When I was on active duty (Airborne Infantry) the bottoms of my feet were hard. That was what you are aiming for. If you are getting hotspots/blisters then your feet are slipping around inside your boot.

There are lots of schools of thougght regarding socks ranging from going barefoot to womens pantyhose. I used to use plain old green army issue socks.(YMMV).

Cjeck this site out www.armyranger.com/bb/viewtopic.php?t=4049&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

Post an introduction if you are going to post. If you don't they will tell you to screw.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 12:39:29 PM EDT
I've had similar problems with my boots too.
Mine are more with it feeling like my toes are all on fire b/c of a pinched nerve b/c the boots fit too tight across the toes.
I got a smaller size boot in a wider size and it helped some.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 12:59:39 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2006 1:04:12 PM EDT by HollowPoint40]
thanks guys for your help,

I put new soles in the 10R's i have and it made them feel perfect to me, real snug everything was good, but i got blisters on the top of my pinky toes and heel.

Since its the pinky toe is that saying they are to tight? Like the sole is pushing my feet to high up?

Breaking in to me was using them to pretty much walk in for couple weeks or something.
Obviously what i did didnt work and i still think those 10R's are the right size but after this blister i dont even want to try them again!

This blister is the biggest one ive ever had.
Is that just a common occurance in non broken in boots or what, like i said in my time in the military i have never had this problem now all of sudden its happening. With that said, what do u guys think? Do i need new Boots?
Or just drive on and hope it gets better?
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 1:27:52 PM EDT
I backpack as a hobby with civvie boots, and do a tiny bit of rucking in ROTC.

I think issue boots suck for the most part (I don't know what is being issued now, but we have probably 80's era jeep tread with 2 inch thick heels, that make for a stupidly hard heel-strike), but my calves and shins have been hurt more than my feet.

Having said that, I will re-iterate what another poster mentioned--that movement is causing your blisters. Lock your heel into the back of the boot with the laces, and you should do ok. I do this by tying a surgeon's knot (basically just the laces wrapped two or three times around one another before moving to the next hook) on civvie boots, or just yank on the laces in at the top of my foot in issue boots. Idea being, keep it tight in that spot where ankle becomes foot.

OR, put a patch of duct tape on that spot before you begin. I do that around some of my toes when I run because they rub together.

Also, control moisture. Damp skin is weak, after which rubbing causes blisters. Wear a medium-cushion wool or synthetic (or blend) sock, and avoid cotton.

So, I don't ruck a lot (I HATE issue equipment for the most part) but hiking has taught me the above.

Hope this helps.
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 3:21:57 PM EDT
You said," desert boots". DB's don't need a break in.They are soft from the get. But for Ruckin' they suck(army issue ones suck, USMC's are gold). You've been in the NG for 4 yrs, do you still have speed lace boots? You can Ruck in PT shoes or Tim's to start training. Keep increasing the klicks and add more wieght over time. Use knee highs under wool(or other good)socks. Moleskin is a God send, get it. Change your socks!!!!!!!! Keep your feet dry. As an 11B remember " travel lite, freeze at night". If the boots/shoes feels wrong after a mile or less, STOP and fix it! I wear two prs of socks and no insoles when I force march. Anybody say,NTC.
ATB,
Chalmers
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 3:39:46 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/28/2006 3:42:19 PM EDT by HollowPoint40]
where i worry now is on the exact boot size i should get, in othere words there are plenty of boots you can put on and feel fine in but when you march that is a whole different thing.

The 10R's fit snug but i also think that is why i got blisters on the top of my pinky toe. (???? am i wrong????)

Obviously blisters come and go but for some reason these are really worse then normal and ive been racking my brain with what to do now that iam down for a couple days with this quarter size blister.


I do have moleskin but i dont think that is going to be something i can put on all the time, if we are rushing etc. so iam trying to stay away from that.
Ive read two socks is good then ive read its bad so maybe i will try that, i love these insoles i have in now but two pairs would be to tight in the boot...
Link Posted: 3/28/2006 4:15:23 PM EDT
Good insoles like spenco with nice arch support and running shoe type coushioning will solve the blisters on the ball of your feet issue. The rubbing on your feet will cause the bilsters. I found that if I losen my boots a bit (tie them just right) they will prevent blisters as well. Good socks are the most important. I always like the issue "steel wool" wool socks as they provide lots of padding and don't retain moisture. I have a buddy who swears by wearing light thin running socks under his wool socks to creat a "slip plane" so that his feet don't rub and pull on. Wet cotton socks are a sure bet to give you blisters.
Link Posted: 3/29/2006 11:01:53 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/30/2006 11:43:18 AM EDT
well i tried on some 10R's today and some 10W, the 10W feel a little to big and the 10R feel alot better, but on the 10r my pinky toe sticks out a little bit on the boot side, you can see it when iam standing up, anyone think thats to close??

Snug as possible as long as circulation isnt cut off??
Link Posted: 3/30/2006 4:31:32 PM EDT
you shuold never get boots that need break in if they don't feel perfect the first time you put them on they are wrong bottom line. also loose is ok tight is what gives you blisters- a wider boot that allows you to lace them up tight so they fit at mid foot and around ankle but give your toes lots of room is the way to go.
Link Posted: 3/30/2006 5:49:07 PM EDT

Originally Posted By captain127:
you shuold never get boots that need break in if they don't feel perfect the first time you put them on they are wrong bottom line.



My early 80's issue USMC combat boots felt like wooden shoes when I first put them on. After 13 weeks on Parris Island, they were soft as glove leather and never gave me a blister or even a hot spot for that matter.
Link Posted: 3/30/2006 7:45:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/30/2006 10:45:13 PM EDT by native4alpha]
My advice is to get boots that are a little small, like one size or a half size smaller and then get them soaked and wear them till they're dry. Also, it was my experience that the camo insoles at the PX are the best ones out there.

Also, don't forget to scrub them when you soak them...I never used saddle soap on my boots but I heard that it helps get the leather broken in quicker.

I was never great at rucking myself, I always hated the quarterly 25 miler. What worked for me was to cinch my ruck tight, high as possible on my back and drive on. Thinking about pussy always helps toohing....I
wanted to add one more thing...if you are gonna need desert boots, try the belleville DES 390, they are hands down the best boots I've ever worn. Feel more like a tennis shoe than a boot.
Link Posted: 3/30/2006 9:12:06 PM EDT
Wearing either silky type dress socks or female's kneww high or regular stocking will prevent chapping and hot spots. Sounds ghey, I know, but if you have trouble....it works. If you have your choice of boots to wear, jungle boots or high grade non-issue boots are best.

I wear Bates M-9 Desert Assault boots and the very first day I put them on I felt like I could run a marathon in them.
Link Posted: 3/31/2006 8:19:42 AM EDT
Blisters are the result of moisture (sweat and/or water) and your feet slipping around inside your boots. Lace your boots up tight. Try double lacing them if you can.

Spray your feet down with Arrid XX dry and wear your issue socks inside out. Using the the Arrid will condition your feet to not sweat so much over time. Wearing your socks inside out will keep the seams off your feet.

Dont use gel inserts, they go mushy after long use and can ooze inside your boots. Use the regular pads.

As stated, use moleskin, pop the blisters at the base to drain the water out of them.
Link Posted: 4/1/2006 5:41:45 AM EDT
Do not use any kind of foot powder with goretex boots. The powder gets into the pores of the goretex and turns the breathable membrane into a plastic bag.
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 12:41:05 AM EDT
wear nylons under your socks, and wear good socks
this is what i used to do, i used to run alot and ruck alot, i have went 50 miles with a 48 pound ruck without weighing the water that was added on it, 48 may sound light but i only weight 135lbs. 2 day hike and my feet was good to go, but i did stop every few hours and look and if sweaty i changed socks.

i used the same thing when i ran marathons or 10 milers, nylons with socks, on marathons even rubbed my toes generously with a&d oinment before hand to prevent blisters between the toes

everyones style is goin to be dif, but the nylons trick has worked for everyone i have ever told, and even know peole that when i mentioned it they already did it

i still hike when i can, you can find cool places to pop a few rounds off

good luck man
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 12:48:08 AM EDT
Try taking your 10R's to a shoe place and have them stretched just a hair.
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 1:37:46 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Pointman_M4A1:
Moleskin is your friend!!!!!!!

put it on the "hotspots", get good socks, go get your foot measured and then get the proper sized boots. Break in your boots before you go out rucking.

As a grunt if you can't take care of your feet you are truly screwed.
(I and any other medic would be seriously pissed if we had to carry you and your shit plus all of ours, and the "treatment" for your feet would be far worse than the original pain)



DOC



+1

Moleskin works well... Make sure you cut a hole in it to leave the blister in the open & not under pressure, then stick another piece over the top to cover it up... Also, once you use moleskin on a blister, even after it heals, USE IT EVERY TIME YOU RUCK. Cover 'bad spots' in moleskin before you go, and it will prevent blisters...

BUT...

Make sure you get some good (Gold Toe or Fox River are 2 good examples available at the PX/Clothing Sales) thick socks before you check the boots... Alot of times folks get & keep buying the wrong size boot because that's what they were originally issued, and the original boot is just barely/not even big enough for the crappy thin black/green issue socks....

Oh, don't use 'sock liners', and DO use foot powder...
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 1:39:02 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/3/2006 1:40:00 AM EDT by Dave_A]

Originally Posted By HollowPoint40:
thanks guys for your help,

I put new soles in the 10R's i have and it made them feel perfect to me, real snug everything was good, but i got blisters on the top of my pinky toes and heel.

Since its the pinky toe is that saying they are to tight? Like the sole is pushing my feet to high up?

Breaking in to me was using them to pretty much walk in for couple weeks or something.
Obviously what i did didnt work and i still think those 10R's are the right size but after this blister i dont even want to try them again!

This blister is the biggest one ive ever had.
Is that just a common occurance in non broken in boots or what, like i said in my time in the military i have never had this problem now all of sudden its happening. With that said, what do u guys think? Do i need new Boots?
Or just drive on and hope it gets better?



10R is the wrong size...

You're getting blisters on top of your toe because the boot is too narrow. The heel blister can be caused by the boot being too small, or by it being too loose around the heel...
Link Posted: 4/3/2006 8:04:19 AM EDT
thanks guys

i ordered 10w's and should get them this week we will see what happens, but i wont lie that those 10r's tore my feet up iam hoping the w's will help.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 5:50:42 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TimJ:
The best cure for my feet was to wear thin socks under the issue wool ones-the polypropelene ones worked well for me.
In Basic I had blisters that covered the bottoms of both my feet, heel to ball of the foot (not the arch). That was not cool.



+1 to that. You can get good hiking socks for outer and wear a good wicking sock against your foot. This will put any movement (which causes blisters) between the 2 pairs of socks rather than between your foot and your sock.

You can also double lace in areas that you want tighter or looser. Also I have had problems with boots too short ( toes touching the tip slightly). This causes serious pain when going downhill with a load.

Good luck
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