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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

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Old 07-06-13, 09:49 PM   #1
ds650
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Most "normal" looking cycling shoes?

So a few weeks back when I bought my first road bike it didn't come with pedals. I bought the cheapest in the store and told them after I decided the brand pedals and shoes I liked I'd be back.

Well I'm way overdue and hating riding with these pedals/straps on my road bike. I don't ride competitively or race. I'm actually a runner that after a surgery on my leg can't seem to run like I used to so while my biking is casual it's picked up more than the just goofing around I did on my other bike for something more after running or on non run days.

65% of the time or so I ride with my 8.5 year old son on his Felt F95 Jr. About half of those rides we ride somewhere to a place or we stop someplace along the route. Because of that I hate the idea of a typical cleat fully exposed bike shoe where I sound like Gregory Hines walking around.

With all that said by "normal" shoe I mean a shoe that doesn't look or sound out of place in a public setting. One I can also walk in without ruining the cleat quickly. I'm leaning toward more a mountain bike type shoe and pedal combo. I see the Speedplay pedals are usually highly thought of. The Speedplay MTB Frog pedals seem to get good reviews with the exception of sand/mud build up. Obviously that wouldn't affect me. The other thing I see with the Speedplay Frogs (Speedplay in general really) is a high level of float that is compared to being on ice. I'm not exactly sure what that means and I'm wondering if it's something that would ruin running that pedal for me. Can someone that has used Speedplay pedals enlighten me some? Is the ice thing something that's over stated?

The shoes I like best that I've found are these Pearl Izumis http://www.zappos.com/pearl-izumi-x-...fcTest=fcl%3A0

Anyone have any experience with these? While I'm not a competitive rider I also don't want a shoe that's too flexible and likely to cause a hot spot especially on such a small platform pedal (by comparison) like the Frogs. Any other ideas?

Is there an obvious popular normal road shoe/pedal combo I'm over looking?

Thanks
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Old 07-06-13, 10:01 PM   #2
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My cycling shoes are Lake Mtn Bike shoes, and I've been wearing them since 2003 (3 different pair, with a 4th in the closet waiting for the 3rd pair to wear out).

Mine are the MX100, and they look like hiking shoes:
http://www.lakecycling.com/shoes/mx100/
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Old 07-06-13, 10:08 PM   #3
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These
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Old 07-06-13, 10:15 PM   #4
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I saw the thread title and immediately thought "Pearl Izumi X series". Then I read the opening post and thought "not Pearl Izumi X series". I have them and like them well enough, but they are a problem with anything but large platform pedals. The soft soles cause hot spots with anything smaller, at least for me.

<edit> I personally dislike pedals with a lot of non-centered float (the "on ice" feeling.) Other people don't seem to mind, and even appreciate it. I'm not sure there's any way to learn for yourself other than to learn for yourself.

Last edited by Six jours; 07-06-13 at 10:18 PM.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:15 PM   #5
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Shimano SPD sandals and socks. Lotsa places you could even wear these to work.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:19 PM   #6
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The only workplace where SPD sandals with socks are appropriate is the Rivendell warehouse.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:27 PM   #7
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Find a way to bring along a lightweight pair of "normal" shoes along or just switch pedals when riding with your kid. I mean if you're riding with your kid you're probably hauling extra stuff anyway.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:32 PM   #8
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The only workplace where SPD sandals with socks are appropriate is the Rivendell warehouse.
And there is nothing appropriate about Rivendell.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:33 PM   #9
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Find a way to bring along a lightweight pair of "normal" shoes along or just switch pedals when riding with your kid. I mean if you're riding with your kid you're probably hauling extra stuff anyway.
Why?

When you're wearing something like the Lake shoes I mentioned, you can cycle, go for a hike around a lake, go for a walk around town looking for a nice café, go grocery shopping, and hop back on the bicycle again to ride ... all without hauling extra stuff or changing shoes and pedals.


Incidentally, I also use the dual-sided pedals - platform on one side and clipless on the other.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:35 PM   #10
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Chrome shoes are good, those, or generally any mountain bike shoe with SPD, or TIME cleats. Avoid the sandle's.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:37 PM   #11
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And there is nothing appropriate about Rivendell.
I kind of like the Rivendell folks myself. But when you see a bearded guy wearing cargo shorts, a seersucker shirt with a reflective triangle on the back, and SPD sandals with socks, you can pretty much guarantee that his Rivendell is somewhere nearby, propped on its kickstand.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:50 PM   #12
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Not just any kickstand, but a kick stand personally sourced by Grant himself, forged by dwarven artisans from middle earth, to be functional, sensible, and most importantly, twice as heavy as necessary.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:54 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Six jours
I kind of like the Rivendell folks myself. But when you see a bearded guy wearing cargo shorts, a seersucker shirt with a reflective triangle on the back, and SPD sandals with socks, you can pretty much guarantee that his Rivendell is somewhere nearby, propped on its kickstand.
I resemble that remark.
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Old 07-06-13, 10:59 PM   #14
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I resemble that remark.
Then we'd probably get along just fine. At least the Riv guys actually ride their bikes, unlike the typical latte-sipper in the 41...

Last edited by Six jours; 07-06-13 at 11:04 PM.
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Old 07-06-13, 11:06 PM   #15
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Then we'd probably get along just fine. At least the Riv guys actually ride their bikes, unlike the typical latte-sipper in the 41...
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Old 07-06-13, 11:16 PM   #16
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speedplays and leave on cleat covers. you dont have to sacrifice perfomance just because you dont want to sound like a tap dancer.

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Old 07-07-13, 12:14 AM   #17
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SPD shoes... tons out there.

and

CrankBrothers pedals... my first pedals were the "candies", I eventually went to the completely non-practical for anything but riding LOOK style pedals.
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Old 07-07-13, 09:07 AM   #18
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SPD shoes... tons out there..
This. With the caveat that NONE of them are excellent if you're frequently off the bike walking around in a lot of dirt or sand.
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Old 07-07-13, 09:49 AM   #19
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Giro Republic look pretty good. Dunno why they went with white sole, though.



I have Diadora Globes which are cheap, easy walking and somewhat normal except for velcro strap.

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Old 07-07-13, 09:53 AM   #20
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Mtn shoes + matching pedals.

AFAIK there are no normal looking road shoes. There is nothing normal about leg shaving and wearing underwear out in public.
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Old 07-07-13, 10:57 AM   #21
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Exustar makes a touring shoe that fits the bill. I recently picked up a pair at a great price from Nashbar.
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Old 07-07-13, 11:19 AM   #22
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I like the DZR spd shoes:
https://www.dzrshoes.com
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Old 07-07-13, 12:38 PM   #23
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Almost any shoe can be a cycling shoe according to http://www.retrofitz.com/
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Old 07-07-13, 03:50 PM   #24
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I wanted "normal shoes" initially and tried MTB shoes and Candy 3 pedals. I pronate so this doesn't work at all when it comes to cycling, so I now buy the most obnoxious shoes possible. So, I recommend something like a Candy pedal with a recessed cleat.
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Old 07-08-13, 06:38 AM   #25
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Thanks for all the replies. I'm now on the fence whether I try the Speedplay Frogs or the Shimano 540 pedal. The 540 is about half the cost and the reviews are very good. Some of the shoes linked are nice. I had no idea there were so many options. If I needed a more dress type shoe I'd certainly consider them. I'm somewhat surprised at the affordability of some of the shoes. I like the Lake shoe, one I'd never seen before. I still thought about buying the Pearl Izumis because I like the casual running shoe look so much. And I'm sure they are more flexible than a straight riding shoe, and according to six jours they are. If I ever found myself in that position of riding longer/harder and having the Pearl Izumis tire me because of a flexible sole I could buy a more standard SPD riding shoe I guess. While it seem strange to me to buy two different shoes for the same thing I guess it's no different than what I did with running shoes.

The remarks about Rivendell. I'd never heard of the place so I right clicked and opened it. The first page has hatchets. How strange.
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