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Is it the shoes or the cleats?

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

Is it the shoes or the cleats?

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Old 08-01-09, 07:46 AM
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tntyz
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Is it the shoes or the cleats?

Or is it me?

Currently using SPDs on my road bike. Getting a hot spot right under the cleats and the shoes are getting worn, so decided to move to a "real" road setup. I like the idea of a larger support platform. Picked up some Bontrager RL shoes and Look pedals. The shoes are super comfortable . . . until I get on the bike. There's a LOT of pressure on the outside edge of my foot (caused by varus?). I spent an hour with the fitting guy at the shop fiddling with cleat adjustment (included a half-hearted attempt to use wedges) but no luck.

I'm basically trying to figure out if this is a shoe problem or if it is a cleat issue. Would different shoes with the Look pedals possibly work? Or am I stuck with SPDs and mountain bike shoes for life? What kind of setup do others with varus use?
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Old 08-01-09, 08:02 AM
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Kai Winters
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Probably the shoes.
Try another model from Bontrager then try some other brands.
Road shoes are snug fitting and depending on the "last" they use may or may not fit you comfortably.
Sidi's are on the longer and narrower side while others are or are not.
With road shoes you always get what you pay for...cheap shoes will be uncomfortable with hot spots and tight/loose spots that you just can't cure.

For my feet Northwave is the brand...My current Evolutions are around 8 years old and are still like new and fit great...for my feet. They have a bit wider toe box compared to Sidi...which I own as well...and are a bit more comfy.
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Old 08-02-09, 07:08 AM
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Maybe I'll switch back to Shimano shoes. Tried my RT-80s with a generic (Dr. Scholl's) orthotics and it felt better than before. I'd like to move off of SPD pedals, though.

Last edited by tntyz; 08-02-09 at 07:58 AM. Reason: Correct shoe model
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Old 08-02-09, 07:33 AM
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Shoes first, cleats second. Once your shoes fit, you may find that some cleat/pedal systems produce hot spots and others don't. I have a lot of trouble with that and ended up on Speedplay's. I get hotspots with SPD's, Look, Time, Shimano, Campy, etc. pedals. Even with the carbon soles on the shoes.

Once you get it all dialed in, you'll be happy, but it might take some searching. Some folks are lucky and can use whatever they want without trouble. I'm not one of them.
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Old 08-02-09, 08:10 AM
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Try those insoles on the road shoes. Or try some other road shoes with a different shape.
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