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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    361

    Shoes too small? My feet hurt!

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    I need your help ladies.

    I have been riding in my Sidi Raiden's ever since I started riding (I even used them for spin class before I got my first bike). When I go for rides that are less than 2 hours, my feet don't hurt and the shoes are quite comfortable. But anything longer than that...and my feet are killing me. The first time this really affected me was when I rode my first century. I thought it must have been the hot weather that caused my feet to swell up more than usual, but towards the end of it, I was in so much pain, and when I got off my bike, I immediately had to take off my shoes.

    Same thing happened to me today 3 hours into my ride, and it felt extra painful where my cleat is located. When I took my shoes off, my feet were throbbing. It seems to happen more when I do lots of climbing.

    Are my shoes simply too small? Do my feet just swell up so much after a prolonged time on my bike? Are the soles not hard enough? Cleat in the wrong position? The rest of my body doesn't hurt in that "my bike fit is off" kind of way.

    I'll use any excuse to buy new shoes, but I need to know if I should buy them half a size bigger than what I currently wear.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Troutdale, OR
    Posts
    2,331
    If you were fine for two hours, it may not be the size. Does your toe feel jammed? or back of your feet along the achiles heel rubbing the back of the shoe? if not then its not the size.

    Or did you clamp down the closure/snaps too tight? did you try loosening them so you foot has bit of wiggle room on top of your feet above the arch. If you clamped down hard, this can cause quite a bit of discomfort.

    Cleat position in relation to the ball of your foot does matter. It may not be positioned right.

    Another possibility from the sound of things is that the sole of your shoe may not be stiff enough or you don't have enough padding under the ball of your feet.

    I'm just shooting in the dark right now. See what others have to say. I do sympethize with you about a painful shoes. It sure takes the fun out of the sport.

    smilingcat

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Honolulu, HI
    Posts
    511
    Your feet will swell when you ride. It could be that for shorter rides there isn't enough time for them to swell significantly enough to bother you.

    Another thing you could be experiencing are hot spots, which typically are felt where you describe your pain occurring. For your sake, I hope it's not it as I've experienced hot spots and they are maddening. If it is there are insoles that have a metatarsal button that can alleviate the pain. Specialized's inserts have the metatarsal button.

    Another thing that is suggested for people who get hot spots is to try a very stiff carbon soled shoe. Obviously, it makes sense to try the inserts first.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Belle, Mo.
    Posts
    1,775
    I second the metatarsal button. I had the same thing and tried larger shoes but the same thing happened. The metatarsal button somehow spreads the bones or something or other. Got my info from Knotted. You can also do a search on hot spots or get Andy Pruitt's medical guide for cyclists.

    You can get the buttons separately on the net or inserts with them in it like ilima said.
    Claudia
    2011 Trek 7.3fx/Specialized Lithia
    2008 Specialized Myka Hardtail/Specialized windie
    1984 Trek 420 Mixte. Specialized Dolce.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    361
    Thanks for the advice so far, can you get those inserts at a LBS?

    Some more info - the shoes have two velcro closures - no ratchet clamp. My toe nails are kept very short but yet yesterday after I took off my shoes, it felt as if my left big toe nail has been digging into my skin. I have a feeling that if I put an insert into the shoe, they'll feel significantly smaller, but that's just my thinking - I associate inserts with too big shoes for some reason?

    That awful feeling can be described as if my bone is being pushed and then beaten with a hammer.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    4,250
    Usually, you take the insole of your shoes out and put new inserts in. Many on here like Superfeet - I know REI has them. I've not seen them in an LBS. My LBS has specialized inserts - but I don't know how well they work.

    I blacked 2 toenails on a ride last year. Didn't know my shoes were too small until that! Of course, it was on a day I rode 80 miles with a 105 heat index

    CA
    There's still so much to be done... -- JB

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    somewhere between the Red & Rio Grande
    Posts
    5,310
    I had the same problem with my Sidis when I first got them. The problem was solved for me by putting Aline insoles in my shoes. The LBS I use recommended them and for me it relieved the problem of pain on long rides. Before the insoles I would be in tears at the end of anything over two hours if I tried walk.

    ETA- My LBS has Superfeet in addition to the Aline insoles. You can also find Superfeet at REI and shoe stores. I think the Sidi stock insoles are pretty crummy, IMO. When I went to Alines we also adjusted cleat position and refit my whole bike. I was having knee problems in addition to painful feet. I still think the Alines helped my feet and the bike fit helped my knee.
    Last edited by Aggie_Ama; 01-18-2009 at 06:02 PM.
    Amanda

    2011 Specialized Epic Comp 29er | Specialized Phenom | "Marie Laveau"
    2007 Cannondale Synapse Carbon Road | Selle Italia Lady Gel Flow | "Miranda"


    You don't have to be great to get started, but you do have to get started to be great. -Lee J. Colan

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    35
    I had terrible foot pain and numbness on long rides when I went clipless. I could barely walk when I got off the bike. I did some research. My pain was almost completely solved by moving the cleats as far toward the heal as possible. I've also learned that a wider pedal can spread the pressure out more and reduce pain, so I'm planning to buy new pedals, too.
    Becky

    "To get something you never had, you have to do something you never did."

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    35
    correcting my typo: "toward the HEEL".
    Becky

    "To get something you never had, you have to do something you never did."

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Washington, DC
    Posts
    1,321
    You might want to loosen your shoes for longer rides (at least during the ride if it's hot out). If that doesn't help, then try moving the cleat farther back towards the heel. That can help eliminate hot spots under the ball of the foot, but I'd think a lot of that would show up by 2hrs. Do you use SPDs (you said you had used them for spinning)? It could be the small contact area of that cleat gets to you after a while.

    Different insoles are also a good idea, because Sidi insoles are practically nonexistent. I like the Specialized BG ones with high arch support, but there are a lot of options. A cycling specific one will probably fit better (still be thin enough).

    Stiffness could be part of the problem, but for some people with various nerve compression things going on in the forefoot, stiffer shoes are more painful.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA
    Posts
    361
    Quote Originally Posted by aicabsolut View Post
    Do you use SPDs (you said you had used them for spinning)? It could be the small contact area of that cleat gets to you after a while.
    I switched out the spd's for keo look cleats in April last year. I bought a cheap pair of cycling shoes for spin class.

    I'll definitely try to go to REI today and buy some inserts.

    Thanks for the advice everybody!

 

 

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