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Road Shoes - any advice would be great

srl1967srl1967 Posts: 2
edited September 2010 in Road beginners
Hi,

I am relatively new to road cycling, got hooked and now cant get enough :D The problem I have at the moment is my shoes. It seems like different shops give different advice and I now I am no longer sure what is right.

I bought a pair of Specialzed Sport Road shoes for about £60, a size up from my usual size, but after an hour of riding my outer toes and balls of my feet were numb, also could feel my big toe pressing against the front of the shoe. I tried loosening the straps but it made no difference.

I thought perhaps it was the shoes so I went to another shop and they said you need a thumbnails distance spare in front of your toe, so I changed the shoes and went for a 46 in some Shimano R081s. I am usually a 43, but a thumbnail distance at the front = 46. I have used these a couple times now and although my toe isnt touching the front, my feet continue to go numb. Also they feel a bit sloppy when climbing hills. Now the shop suggests insoles costing about £30

Should I go for insoles or a different brand closer fitting shoe, ie one around my actual size in a different make? Or is it correct that I should go massively bigger like I have? Any ideas about the numbness? Any help would be great and save me a fortune in new shoes :shock: Do you get what you pay for with shoes ie as I am buying at the bottom end of the market, so is that why I am getting problems?

Thanks

Posts

  • dmch2dmch2 Posts: 731
    I used to cycle in trainers but recently got SPD-SL shoes/pedals. Whilst the connection to the pedals and ability to pull as well as push is superb they are a lot less comfy than trainers. I wouldn't say my feet go numb but I can certainly feel it after an hour.

    How many rides have you done with them? I suspect it's mostly a case of getting used to something that's just a bit different.
    2010 Trek 1.5 Road - swissstop green, conti GP4000S
    2004 Marin Muirwoods Hybrid
  • izzaizza Posts: 1,561
    I had similar symptoms with my Northwaves.

    1) If the pain and numbness aren't there fro the start then it may well not be to do with the uppers. It could be the footbed and how that is damaging/rubbing the nerves on the sole of the foot. In my case I switched to a Specialized insole as they were recommended to me by individuals and other outlets as being the best for nerve problems.

    The fact you say that loosening the strap makes no difference implies IMHO that you may have a similar issue.

    2) Have a look at the angle of your cleats. It could be that you are naturally ending up with your toes in a slightly different dirrection to your shoes and thus are pushing with your big toes to the side of your shoe.

    I had a bike fit (£120 at a Specialized concept store) and it was the best money I have spent on my bike.

    3) Have a look at your cleat position. THere are numerous threads on here about moving them back and forward relative to the bones in your feet to help with comfort and nerve damage.
  • izzaizza Posts: 1,561
    I had similar symptoms with my Northwaves.

    1) If the pain and numbness aren't there fro the start then it may well not be to do with the uppers. It could be the footbed and how that is damaging/rubbing the nerves on the sole of the foot. In my case I switched to a Specialized insole as they were recommended to me by individuals and other outlets as being the best for nerve problems.

    The fact you say that loosening the strap makes no difference implies IMHO that you may have a similar issue.

    2) Have a look at the angle of your cleats. It could be that you are naturally ending up with your toes in a slightly different dirrection to your shoes and thus are pushing with your big toes to the side of your shoe.

    I had a bike fit (£120 at a Specialized concept store) and it was the best money I have spent on my bike.

    3) Have a look at your cleat position. THere are numerous threads on here about moving them back and forward relative to the bones in your feet to help with comfort and nerve damage.
  • I wear Northwave Vertigo's, I am a size 9 (43) in normal shoes and a size 9 in the Vertigo's fits like a glove, no sloppiness, no numb toes and I did not need to get a size bigger.

    Less than £60.00 as well so price means diddly squat.

    I am no expert but if the shop is suggesting insoles it looks as if the shoes do not fit you and why should you pay a further £30.00 to make them fit.

    Get your money back and get yourself a decent pair that fit and do the job.
  • It does sound to me like you need to get a pair that fit your feet better.

    No amount of inner soles are going to help now!

    I do occasionally suffer from a bit of crampness in the arch of my foot if I have my shoes too tight...but loosening them up usually makes the cramping ease.
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  • PretrePretre Posts: 355
    Only thing to do is to try different brands - IME Shimano & Sidi are quite narrow, whilst Specialized are fairly wide & Northwave are the widest
  • Pretre wrote:
    Northwave are the widest

    Really!!!, I would not say I have wide feet, I certainly do not buy wide fitting shoes and the Northwaves fit me spot on, but as you say you need to try them on first.
  • dmch2dmch2 Posts: 731
    I have Shinamo shoes and wide feet. I think you just have to try them on!
    2010 Trek 1.5 Road - swissstop green, conti GP4000S
    2004 Marin Muirwoods Hybrid
  • nferrarnferrar Posts: 2,511
    Assuming you're not over-tightening the Shimanos then it does sound like you have wide feet and sizing up isn't always the answer. I'd shop around for wider shoes (you should only need to size up one size IME, not 3 as you are doing), some manufacturers like Sidi do wide versions of some models as well but I doubt many/any shops would carry them in stock.
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