My toes get numb?

aberfeldyweather
aberfeldyweather Posts: 44
edited August 2007 in Road beginners
I just did a 43 miles ride from Aberfeldy to Killin and back, no stops. 750 ml of powerade and 2 muesli bars. My toes were quite numb and tingly for quite a bit of the ride, this happens on long runs regardless of footwear (i have cages). Is this: 1. part and parcel of the deal, 2. something that will fade, 3. too high seat post, 4. summat else?

The ride is quite hilly but no big hills. 300 feet to 800 feet and so forth.

Comments

  • You say "regardless of footwear", but I suspect a proper cycling shoe with extremely stiff sole would eliminate the problem. I got numb toes at around 30 or 40 miles when I was using pedals with toeclips and straps, and a tingling sensation which sometimes lasted for hours after the ride. I thought it might have been the straps being too tight, but I removed them entirely for a couple of rides and the problem persisted. Switched to clipless pedals with Time shoes (with ultra-stiff soles that don't flex at all) and the problem completely disappeared overnight.
  • basha
    basha Posts: 13
    Hi,
    Can anyone tell me how to get rid of pins and needles in my toes while cycling???
    I have tried clipless peddles, ordinary peddles, hard soles shoes soft soled shoes, all types of trainers. I have been back to the store where i bought it (Specialized Tri Cross) to get refitted. but all to no avail.
    It usualy starts after around 10miles, a tingling feeling in my left foot / toes, this turns to pins and needles after around 14 miles, by around 16 my toes go numb, then the toes on my other foot start to do the same.
    After around 25 miles, i have to stop, and walk until the feeling comes back.

    Any idea's, help, or suggestions realy welcom

    Cheers
    Bash
  • herbie12
    herbie12 Posts: 40
    I don't know about the Tri Cross shoes, but I used to get numb little toes until I switched to really stiff Sidi road shoes. I was using Shimano MTB shoes originally with MTB pedals and whilst I thought they were stiff they clearly weren't providing enough support for longer distances.
  • basha
    basha Posts: 13
    Thanks for the reply, when i said TRI cross, this refers to the type of bike i ride.
    As for shoes, i have tried soles so stiff, you could'nt bend them in a vice.
    I suspect it's more to do with the nerve between the Bo---cks and the Arse H---e

    Also know as the peraneium (not sure how its spelt) i have heard some male riders can suffer from this. I was hoping someone could advise me on a solution.

    But hey thanks for the reply
  • As already mentioned - amke sure you have stiff soled shoes for starters.

    I know it sounds daft - but do you flex your toes very now and again when you're going along? I often find that within a few miles I scrunch my toes up subconscioulsy - and have to make a deliberate point of stretching them out inside the shoe so the rest in a more normal position. If I don't do this i have the same problem as you.

    I've also found that different socks make a difference.
    Has the head wind picked up or the tail wind dropped off???
  • Crapaud
    Crapaud Posts: 2,483
    I suffered this for a while.

    According to Bicycling Medicine, "pain, burning or numbness is almost always caused by pressure around the foot......occasionally high mileage and an improperly positioned cleat".

    Solutions:
      loosen your toe straps, loosen your shoes, buy wider or larger shoes usually the cleat needs to be placed further back check shoes for uneveness or irregularities on the sole, check that cleat bolts do not protrude

    "If your problem persists, see your doctor."

    In my case, I moved the cleat.
    A fanatic is one who can’t change his mind and won’t change the subject - Churchill
  • baudman
    baudman Posts: 757
    I know it sounds daft - but do you flex your toes very now and again when you're going along? I often find that within a few miles I scrunch my toes up subconscioulsy - and have to make a deliberate point of stretching them out inside the shoe so the rest in a more normal position. If I don't do this i have the same problem as you.

    Wot he said. 'Cept I do the opposite. I scrunch my toes "Make fists with your feet" as John McLain would say. I have a regular few things I do when coasting (especially if I see a red light ahead). Scrunch toes. Get out of the saddle (get some blood to the boys). Arch my back the opposite away. All helps.
    Commute - MASI Souville3 | Road/CX - MASI Speciale CX | Family - 80s ugly | Utility - Cargobike
  • Brian B
    Brian B Posts: 2,071
    If you are stopped for a snack on a high milage run get your shoes off and take a 2 min stroll about on the grass. As for loosening your footwear do this initially until you have around 10 miles done and then tighten them up as your foot is now swollen by now. 2nd the advice about scrunching and making 'fists with feet'. I get this problem and have tried different pedals and shoes but I only get it in my left foot.
    Brian B.
  • knedlicky
    knedlicky Posts: 3,097
    Crapaud wrote:
    According to Bicycling Medicine, "pain, burning or numbness is almost always caused by pressure around the foot......occasionally high mileage and an improperly positioned cleat".
    Burning feet with numbness happens when effort is greater than normal and weather is markedly warmer than the rider is familiar with. Some people taking part long strenuous events in hot weather, like the Etape du Velo or the Marmotte or similar must have surely experienced it. The feet swell more than they are comfortable with in the shoe and then feel like they are in an oven. And the toes become numb.

    About 5 years ago in a cyclosportive going up the Furka Pass when the temperature even at altitude was about 90 deg F, I had to stop, take off my shoes and relinquish all my bottle liquid over my feet, they had become so hot and tingley. Fortunately about 15 km over the pass, there was a water station.

    I’m not sure this may be the problem with aberfeldyweather, given normal temperatures in the UK - perhaps he just has too tight shoes?
  • What is happening is that the metatarsal bones in the foot are pressing on the nerves and blood supply with the physical motion of pedalling. This causes numbness and tingles or even 'hot foot' as in my case. I have a history of the problem and even get insoles made at hospital just to be able to get through the average day without pain so I know what I'm on about. I used to ride in trainers but when I switched to Specialized Sonoma (spelling?) and cleats it made a big difference.. so stiff soles (mine could be stiffer but shoe width is an issue with me..)There are sandals made with cleat fittings for tropical climates which I think are great having cycled 60 miles in sandals with no pain at all.. (as the foot is allowed to spread out naturally and pressure on metatarsals is removed as bones not crunched..
    Gary Heiss
  • TasRoss
    TasRoss Posts: 1
    Have a look at Specialized shoes, they have a footbed which is designed to spread the metatarsals and reduce pressure in this area.
    They also improve your pedalling motion, I have used the MTB version after having knee pain and they improved comfort no end. I am consequently getting a pair for the road bike. :D
  • Izembard
    Izembard Posts: 42
    Wow, this was the reason I gave up cycling.
    Seriously the pain and discomfort caused by complete numbness and pins and needles drove me to dispair. As a young cyclist I would spend hours enduring this situation. I remember spending what should have been two of the most fantastic weeks cycling in my life cycling in France in pure agony as a result of this problem.
    All of this cycling was done in the 80's when clips were all you could get.

    Two years ago I got the old bike out again after over 15 years and started to ride again and guess what my feet started to hurt. As a last ditch attempt at reolving the issue I went out and bought a pair of Sidi cycling shoes and a set of Shimano pedals..........what a bloody revelation the problem has completly gone..not even a twinge, regardless of distance terrain or duration.

    If anyone asks me what's the greatest invention of the 20th Century is, my answer would be obvious.

    Iz
  • Shoes that are too tight will cause numbness. I find that you only need to have your shoes on loosely (obviously not so loose you can pull your foot out :? ) which delays it or avouds it completely.
  • volvine
    volvine Posts: 409
    i had same problem pins and needles in toes and foot with my shimano pedals took it to bike shop he said they where mtb pedals so bought a pair of look pedals and problem solved.
  • jedster
    jedster Posts: 1,717
    I use SPDs (MTB pedals) and do get a bit of numbness. Lots of MTBers ride long distances - how do they deal with numbness if its the small pedals that are to blame?