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  1. #1
    Senior Member danielgaz's Avatar
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    Big Toe/Metatarsal Pain

    I was wondering what people thought about addressing the following: on any ride over 40 miles, my right foot experiences absolutely searing pain from the tip of my big toe to the metatarsal joint (ball). I've got Look cleats in some 6+ year old Sidi Genius (non-carbon soled) shoes. Is this a job for eSoles/BG Fit inserts? Custom orthotics? Shims? I've tried Speedplay pedals and those did the same thing. If some have had this pain and eliminated it, I'd love to know how.

  2. #2
    Senior Member zandoval's Avatar
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    Try using some Gel inserts to start - Checkout the cheapest ones first - Toe spreaders work well and are capable of reducing your symptoms by as much as 50%... They are not a cure and do consider seeing at least a podiatrist...

    No matter where your at... There you are... Δf:=f(1/2)-f(-1/2)

  3. #3
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    +1 on trying the above first. I would say that when I had a recent fitting, I was introduced to new cleat wedges which helped me enormously. I didn't want to go the orthotic route as I am very flat footed and they generally bother more than help, plus I use the Speciallized footbeds which I find very comfortable. My fitter also suggested the wedges as they move the cleat vs, the foot inside the shoe which can make the shoe too tight. World of difference, no more pain or excessive pressure on the inside of my foot (close to where you seem to be having problems).

  4. #4
    BikeFitPro
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    Sounds like you need to move the cleat back on the shoe (foot forward). This combined with wedges is what I would try.
    move the cleat back on the shoe. This combined with wedges is what I would try. Look_fore_aft_3.jpgLook_fore_aft_2.jpg

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    Yup, if you're getting that type of focused pain, it's from focused PRESSURE in the wrong place. Some cleats have side-to-side adjustment, almost all have fore-aft. Since everyone's personal anatomy is unique is small ways, proper cleat adjustment is a "feel" process. Experiment....

  6. #6
    Senior Member danielgaz's Avatar
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    Thanks for the help. Will try some different things. Can't go much more back than I already am on my shoes (Sidi Genius), which frustrates me.

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    I can relate; I had a pair of Answer MTB shoes that wouldn't allow me to position the cleats far enough FORWARD, always felt like the ARCH of my foot was on the pedal -- drove me half-nuts. Never buy from them again.

    My observation has been that Sidi's are usually narrower than other brands; do they pinch your toes at all?

  8. #8
    Senior Member danielgaz's Avatar
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    They seem to be tight in the toes, yes. I have to close the the Velcro first, then the strap/buckle, then readjust the Velcro to make certain my toes can wiggle.

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    Been there done that. On a 24 hour ride no less! Sidi Genius shoe, too. Switched to Sidi Mega shoe and most of it went away. Still can't fit wedges inside them, take up too much room, but I did use Big Meats to wedge under the Look cleats.
    Now I have Specialized road shoes with their blue foot beds and no wedges (their shoes have 11/2 degree of wedge molded into the sole). Never get numb feet anymore.
    The Sidi shoes are more comfortable on the feet, but the SBC shoes are working real well for preventing numbness because I can get the proper foot support inside the shoe!

  10. #10
    Senior Member danielgaz's Avatar
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    I am going to try those shoes on this weekend. I like the BOA fit option and the closer-to-midfoot I can set my cleats. Heard Superfeet yellow are a good choice too. What do you have?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by danielgaz View Post
    I am going to try those shoes on this weekend. I like the BOA fit option and the closer-to-midfoot I can set my cleats. Heard Superfeet yellow are a good choice too. What do you have?
    I'll tell you that while every one is different, the S-Works shoes are the best fitting and most comfortable I have ever worn in my life. I hope you find a model that fits, I really think Specialized has done a great job when it comes to contact points like shoes and saddles. I use the Specialized footbed for flat footed ppl, I think it's red

  12. #12
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    I've tried all the narrow superfeet options and I have to say the the specialized footbeds are just so much better. The metatarsal bump really does make a difference, and the superfeet insoles don't have it. I did have to give up my s-works shoes, unfortunately. They were fine for 2 years, and then they were not fine. The stiffness, while nice for controlling power loss, was hurting my left achilles. Going to a slightly less stiff shoe helped immensely. I also have super narrrow heels, and the specialized were slightly too wide, so my foot was pulling out no matter what. Went to a pair of bontrager shoes and that problem was solved.

  13. #13
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    robbyville, I use the SWorks shoe from 2011 with blue insole. You are correct, the red insole is as flat as they offer. Minimal arch support. My son has flat feet and I put blue in his shoes to eliminate numbness. Now he wears them in his everyday shoes! Really likes how it affects his back. Runs with them as well.
    If there is one thing Specialized has done right is their research into shoes and the relationship it has with the foot. Of course they were the first to break with tradition and consult podiatrists during design. Good on them. Now they need to consult Sugoi on how to make a super comfy padded short!

    The Sidi shoe is still much more comfortable to wear. Not as stiff in the upper and feel more glove like, longer tongue to protect ankle from irritation, the uppers don't squeak, and the soles are more forgiving. I emailed them with these concerns and that was as far as it went.
    Last edited by TiHabanero; 06-24-13 at 06:01 PM.

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    IMO you suffer of swollen feet, it start happening from one day to another... solution is bigger shoes. Second thing, get the spech insoles with more support.

    Good luck.

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