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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 04-05-10, 06:44 PM   #1
Trebor Snave
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My feet fall asleep!

After about an hour of being clipped in, my feet fall asleep. After three hours, even with rest stops, the pain becomes incredible.

I want to ride long distances, but when my feet hurt like this, it's not much fun anymore.

Anyone have any suggestions? I've tried going back to platform pedals. So far I haven't done any long rides this way, but my feet are still falling asleep - sometimes within half an hour.

Help?
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Old 04-05-10, 07:18 PM   #2
Wylde06
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Try loosening your shoes after a few miles. When my feet start to get somewhat sore I loosen the shoes a bit and they feel better.
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Old 04-05-10, 07:54 PM   #3
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Specialized Body Geometry insoles. Your local Specialized dealer should have them in several different variations. They have deal that you step on and compare your footprint to a chart to see wich one is right for you. I won't ever use any cycling shoes without them again. I had two pairs of shoes that used to give me hot spots until I tried them. I tried using a new pair of shoes that I hadn't got a chance to get insoles for a couple weeks ago on a 40 mile ride and my left foot was numb after about ten miles. Yesterday I did about 50 miles and 30 miles today wearing the same shoes with BG insoles and felt great.

Reading back, this sounds like a commercial, but I am not affiliated with the company in any way.
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Old 04-05-10, 08:32 PM   #4
Longissimus
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Is your seat position correct? Does the saddle fit? I had this issue once and it was remedied with seat position (in my case it was too far forward). This may not be the issue at all, but something else to consider....
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Old 04-05-10, 08:34 PM   #5
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The insoles are a great idea. You might also try lowering your seat just a little bit. Could be you're pinching a nerve somewhere around your lower back and it's traveling down to your foot (feet)
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Old 04-05-10, 09:12 PM   #6
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1.Try to play with the saddle height. It may be too low. Raise it gradually until your hips begin to rock when you pedal, then drop it 1/2".
2.Then try stiffer sole shoes.
3.Ride in a lower gear, increase your cadence.
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Old 04-05-10, 09:40 PM   #7
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Moving the cleats back to the position closest to your arch can sometimes relieve that. I can't remember where I read that, but someone...Lon Haldeman or Pete Penseyres...recommended it.

Also make sure the shoes aren't too tight.
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Old 04-05-10, 11:26 PM   #8
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Moving the cleats back to the position closest to your arch can sometimes relieve that. I can't remember where I read that, but someone...Lon Haldeman or Pete Penseyres...recommended it.

Also make sure the shoes aren't too tight.
It's mentioned in "Ride to 100."

As for too tight shoes, that's a not uncommon problem. I wonder if Edward Lear's "Uncle Arly" was a cyclist? ("His shoes were far too tight" is the refrain of the poem.)
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Old 04-05-10, 11:35 PM   #9
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I had this problem. I corrected it with a combination of:
-Stiffer-soled shoes. i found i had better power when pedaling, and my feet didnt get tired or cramped up because of the better support.
-Insoles, i also use the specialized footbeds. poor support makes feet very unhappy in several ways
-loosening the fastening of the shoes.. It doesn't need to be super tight in order to pedal efficiently. I have my shoes just tight enough to prevent my feet from pulling up out of them on the upstroke, and not much more. my comfort has increased considerably from doing just that.
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Old 04-06-10, 08:03 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
It's mentioned in "Ride to 100."
That's probably where I read it...it was a brief discussion on cleat placement: closer to the toes for more "sprint" power and closer to the arch for long rides.
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Old 04-06-10, 08:25 AM   #11
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shoes are too tight
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Old 04-06-10, 10:46 AM   #12
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There are a ton of reasons your feet could be falling asleep. A few people hit on them already: Shoes are too tight, cleats need adjusted, soft soles... All contributing factors, but to really nail it down it helps to know how your feet go numb.

What kind of shoes do you have?
- 2-bolt SPD cleats or 3-bolt "road" cleats?
- Closure system: Laces or straps? If straps, how many and what type (ratcheting top strap)?

Does the numbness start at the toes and work its way back through the foot?
Does it start with a pressure point over the arch and radiate out from there?
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Old 04-06-10, 10:58 AM   #13
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If your shoes are too tight, I wouldn't install insoles!
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Old 04-06-10, 11:30 AM   #14
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I'm thinking too tight. After a while, your feet begin to swell. For me, at about mile 20, I loosen the straps.
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Old 04-06-10, 11:54 AM   #15
Trebor Snave
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I'm using two-bolt SPD cleats (eggbeaters on both bikes) that are adjusted to be under the ball of my foot. MTB shoes, laced. Numbness (and pain) starts at the pressure point under the ball of my foot, right over the pedal axle.

I'll definitely try loosening my shoes! I've always liked them to be cinched up, so that seems to be an obvious change. Next chance to ride is tomorrow, so I'll try it then.

It was funny after I changed the pedals back, I noticed that my foot was lifting off during the upstroke. I must use the clips more than I thought. I'm thinking about going to a two-sided pedal for my MTB, I ride just enough places where I want the ability to quickly dab a foot without having to unclip.
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Old 04-06-10, 12:01 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deep_sky View Post
I
-loosening the fastening of the shoes.. It doesn't need to be super tight in order to pedal efficiently. I have my shoes just tight enough to prevent my feet from pulling up out of them on the upstroke, and not much more. my comfort has increased considerably from doing just that.
^+1
Exact same solution for me.
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Old 04-06-10, 12:02 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trebor Snave View Post
I'm using two-bolt SPD cleats (eggbeaters on both bikes) that are adjusted to be under the ball of my foot. MTB shoes, laced. Numbness (and pain) starts at the pressure point under the ball of my foot, right over the pedal axle.

I'll definitely try loosening my shoes! I've always liked them to be cinched up, so that seems to be an obvious change. Next chance to ride is tomorrow, so I'll try it then.

It was funny after I changed the pedals back, I noticed that my foot was lifting off during the upstroke. I must use the clips more than I thought. I'm thinking about going to a two-sided pedal for my MTB, I ride just enough places where I want the ability to quickly dab a foot without having to unclip.
Try loosening the laces a little bit as a starting point to see if that helps out.
If not, then try moving the cleats.
If that doesn't help, you might benefit from a stiffer soled shoe to distribute the pressure more evenly across the bottom of your foot. The problem you're having does sound similar to that of other people I've talked to about SPD type cleats and long distance riding: A pressure point develops at the pedal interface and leads to hotspots and numbness.
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