One of the most irritating issues of running can be what happens when those clothes swish back and forth for hours on end. Of course, I’m talking about chafing. A painful and irritating side effect that many runners deal with. Thankfully, there are options for managing this nonsense, really effective options.
A tried and mostly-true method has always been to use petroleum jelly on your trouble spots. It tends to keep irritation away for many miles. Only slight down side? It’s messy, greasy and oily, and may even stain your clothes. One of the more recent products to help with chafing is Gold Bond’s Friction Defense. It looks like a stick of deodorant, but it’s not meant to keep you smelling fresh. Instead it will keep skin free from painful chafing.
Whether men need to avoid bloody nipples, or ladies need to get relief from a snug jog bra, the key to fighting chafing is to reduce the friction. Several of us put the Gold Bond to the test this summer to see if it stacks up against other similar products.
I had some blisters show up after a first run in a new pair of socks and shoes. This troubled me as I had a long run coming up. I used the Friction Defense all over my toes and feet before the 17-mile run. I made it to the end without one bit of rubbing, hot spots, or any chafing. Plus, the product isn’t oily or sticky. I wasn’t a greasy mess when I took my shoes off.
John Thompson has been training all summer for his first half-marathon as part of the Local Joes program. He’s been using the Friction Defense off and on as he trains, and told us, “I like it, it works, no funny smell, no weird residue.”
Nathan Carr is also a part of the Local Joes training program. He’s a former football player who just adopted running this summer. Either way, he’s no stranger to the need for keeping yourself chafe-free during a game or race. He, however, didn’t enjoy Friction Defense as much as John and I did.
“Not a huge fan. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t my favorite product I have used. It didn’t last as long during my run as I would have liked,” said Carr.
The product is also marketed to non-athletes. It’s intended for anyone who might need to fight friction. You can find it in online, in discount stores and supermarkets for about five bucks.
Gold Bond’s Friction Defense is certainly worth a try, because there’s no need to ever be irritated while running.