I’ll probably get hammered with disagreement for this, but it’s how I see it.
I don’t think string thickness has a thing to do with ruts, soreness or calluses. I believe it’s how often and how much you play to harden your fingertips. Like Mike, I don’t have calluses either but my left fingertips are way harder than my right. Tap your fingers on the kitchen table and you’ll hear a noticable difference. It’s the same as walking barefoot in gravel. Kids that go barefoot in the summer all the time don’t think twice about it, but anyone that wears shoes all the time couldn’t take two steps without screaming in pain (like me).
The reason lighter strings seem easier on the fingers is because there is less tension, making them easier to fret. I like Mike’s excercise above. Only fret hard enough to get clear notes. This will also keep you from sharpening the note that is fretted.
I too use .013 - .056 guitar strings and on Mandolin, I use J-75’s. They’re like logging cables, but sound great and are no problem at all.
I say put the heavier strings on, play and get used to them. It won’t take long. Another huge, huge factor is your set-up. It doesn’t matter what gauge strings you have on any instrument (except square neck dobro), high action will destroy your fingers.
So, make sure your instrument is set up correctly, put heavier strings on (they will sound much better) and play, play, play!
Hope someone agrees with me on this and I hope it helps someone!