Sore Nipple Calculator

You've heard of the McMillan Calculator that calculates your projected race finish time based on other races (your projected marathon finish based on your half marathon time,) or using Yasso 800 times to do the same, but have you heard of the Sore Nipple Calculator? (patent pending)

Last weekend, I hit a long run threshold I haven't hit in nearly six months and that was a ten mile long run.  Not long for a marathoner, and a 5K distance for an ultra runner, yet I had something I hadn't experienced in quite some time.  Sore nipples.  Chafing is one of those topics like running & bathroom management that everyone deals with but rarely talk about.

Have I regressed that much as a runner that I forgot to lube up for this distance?  A rookie mistake.  I have mental notes that gauge a variety of preparations for clothing, body prep, and nutrient loading.  Some common ones;

Singlet vs. Short sleeve:  >35 °
Shorts vs. Running Tights: >32 °
Long Sleeve: <32°
Gloves and Warm Hat vs. Sun Hat: <32°
Warm gloves vs. light gloves: <20°
Jacket (cold:) <20°
Heavy Jacket: <12°
Single Water (4-6+ oz.:) >five miles
Water Bottle: >10 miles
Water Belt: >15 miles
Nutrients: > 4-6 miles (multiply single dose x four miles)

Which brings us to chafing.  I have a variety of socks in my arsenal.  For runs greater than ten miles, I prefer SmartWool vs. dreaded cotton flavors which limits blisters.  For BodyGlide application, there are a couple variables; predominantly distance, but weather plays a factor.
Simply put, greater than ten miles, you'd better lather up the nipples, feet, and any high rub areas (taint, inner thighs.)  If it's freezing out, subtract a couple miles or your nips will be barking.  Rain and wind factor in as well.  When I ran Portland last year, it rained the ENTIRE race...can you imagine, no BodyGlide for that one?  Ouchie Mama!

(Goes without saying, this is not a paid endorsement, but a public service announcement.)


  1. Brilliant! I can imagine a simple yet comprehensive form in which takes in the factors of humidity/rain, weather, wind factor, # of miles, singlet vs t, fabric choice. Get it sponsored ;)

  2. Yep, have those same calculations as well (luckily, I've not got the nipple problem but I've got other chafing issues). Although, in Austin, my shorts vs tights, etc is a lot higher (my temp is somewhere in the 50s) and I stop wearing tanks or start wearing arm warmers in the 60s.


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