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· Michigoose
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

When I bought my shoes (Shimanos) I specifically bought them small to avoid slippage and wasted energy while pedalling. However, I am a little worried...I'm doing my first century in a week, and I don't know how much my feet will swell or if I should pick up a pair of shoes with a little more room before I do that...thanks for your help.
 

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joehartley said:
Hey all,

When I bought my shoes (Shimanos) I specifically bought them small to avoid slippage and wasted energy while pedalling. However, I am a little worried...I'm doing my first century in a week, and I don't know how much my feet will swell or if I should pick up a pair of shoes with a little more room before I do that...thanks for your help.

I can't say if your shoes are right for the job or not, but here is what works for me.


I buy shoes with plenty/enough/a comfortable amount of room. The velcro straps or quick release/ratchet straps or whatever, do the work of securing my feet to avoid slipping. Often to secure my foot I will tap my heel on the ground, with toes pointed in the air, so that my heal is snug against the back cup of the shoe and then I secure my foot with the velcro strap. That usually yeilds the best and securest fit...and my toes have room to wiggle.

I recommend straps over laces, because laces typically are stretchy right?

I used to have tight shoes too for those same reasons that you mention. After about 20 miles my feet would get sore and by the ride's end, around 35 miles, my feet were on fire. That was about 18 years ago. Since then I choose my shoes by my regular shoe size, and the shape of the toe box so that my toes have plenty of room for comfort, and like I said the straps do the rest.

Hope this helps,
Tshirt
 

· Palm trees & sunshine!
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Confortable shoes, Joe... comfortable shoes. I drove the guy at the LBS nuts while I tried on about 20 different pairs of shoes before I came to the right brand and size for my feet. Now my bike shoes are literally the most comfortable pair of shoes I own.

Get a pair that FIT.
 

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KenB said:
Confortable shoes, Joe... comfortable shoes. I drove the guy at the LBS nuts while I tried on about 20 different pairs of shoes before I came to the right brand and size for my feet. Now my bike shoes are literally the most comfortable pair of shoes I own.

Get a pair that FIT.
+1. Comfort is key. Also, don't have to exact vengeance on your feet when you fasten the velcro, ratchet the strap, or tie the laces: doing so will only decrease circulation when your feet swell and make pain more likely. I fasten my shoe straps at snug minus 1 or so. Now, the straps on my on my corsett are yanked as hard as the dominatrix can pull them.
 

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A cheaper alternative to buying a second pair of larger shoes is to get a pair of of thin athletic socks like the DeFeet Air•E•Ators. That is if you don't already use thin socks such as these. I think they are much more comfortable than normal cotton/nylon socks like GoldToe quarter socks I wear with normal tennis shoes.
 

· Frog Whisperer
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KenB said:
Confortable shoes, Joe... comfortable shoes. I drove the guy at the LBS nuts while I tried on about 20 different pairs of shoes before I came to the right brand and size for my feet. Now my bike shoes are literally the most comfortable pair of shoes I own.

Get a pair that FIT.

LOL...I win I drove guys at 5 LBS nuts trying on close to 50 pairs of shoes.....I wear a 6 1/2 but WIDE, at the toes. I have been tempted on MANY occasions to snip the "little piggy" right off, seems pretty useless to me
 

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joehartley said:
Hey all,

When I bought my shoes (Shimanos) I specifically bought them small to avoid slippage and wasted energy while pedalling. However, I am a little worried...I'm doing my first century in a week, and I don't know how much my feet will swell or if I should pick up a pair of shoes with a little more room before I do that...thanks for your help.
Changing your shoes a week before the big event is probably a bad idea. You'll probably get your cleat position just a bit off, and on your first century that could mean that your knees will start hurting. Not good.

Start the ride with your shoes a click looser than you normally tighten them to, and pay attention to your feet. If they start feeling hot, loosen the straps on your shoes. I adjust my shoes every 20 or 30 miles on hot rides.
 

· Michigoose
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for all the advice...I didn't even think about the cleat positioning thing, and I already wear really thin socks, even thinner than the aireators.

As for now, I don't think I'm going to change shoes, especially with the long ride coming up. I think I'll just take the shoes off when we stop for food/coffee. I'll treat the new shoes as a nice reward for completing the ride.

My saddle, however, I am going to change. I don't care if it's 6 days before the ride, that sucker needs to come off of there. I don't think my boys can handle 5-6 hours on that thing:blush2:
 

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I did that too. My road bike shoes are Shimano size 44 and they should be 45. I bought them in 1993 or so. I used thin socks for a while which helped some. I ended up not using them because I prefer mt bike pedals and shoes so I can walk more normally. Every now and then I try those old Shimano shoes on and they are too small. I have no idea how I ever wore them.
 

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If your feet are beginnig to hurt and your shoes have two or three straps, ride a while with only the top strap lightly fastened. You're not going to pull it open, and 70 miles into a century, the last thing on your mind will be "efficient power transfer," especially when your feet are hurting.
 

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Bingo. I'd say shoes are probably more important than saddles. When your saddle isn't comfortable, at least you can stand or shift your weight. If shoes are too small, it is miserable... If the original OP has never ridden a century before, buy new shoes before the ride....Your feet will thank you.............
 

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To quote Fats Waller

Who's that walkin' round here, Mercy
Sounds like baby patter, baby elephant patter thats what I calls it
Say up in Harlem at a table for two
There were four of us,
me, your big feet and you
From your ankles up, I'd say you sure look sweet
From there down there's just too much feet
Yes, your feets too big
Don't want ya, cause ya feets too big
Can't use ya, cause ya feets too big
I really hate ya, cause ya feets too big


Where did ya get em
Your girl she likes you, she thinks you're nice
Got what it takes to be in paradise
She likes your face
She likes your (???)
Man oh man those things are too big
Your feets too big
Don't want cha, cause ya feets too big
Mad at you, cause your feets too big
I hate you, cause your feets too big

Oh your pedal extremities are colossal
To me you look just like a fossil
Got me walkin', talkin' and squarkin''
Cause your feets too big
Yeah, Come on and walk that thing
Oh I've never heard of such walkin', Mercy
Your pedal extremities really are obnoxious
one never knows do one
 

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Been sorry every time I bought shoes on the small side

joehartley said:
Hey all,

When I bought my shoes (Shimanos) I specifically bought them small to avoid slippage and wasted energy while pedalling. However, I am a little worried...I'm doing my first century in a week, and I don't know how much my feet will swell or if I should pick up a pair of shoes with a little more room before I do that...thanks for your help.

Too late to help you now, but at least on my feet, buying small doesn't work. I wear size 15 (Euro 50 or 51), so I have a lot of experience with shoes that are just a little snug. Guaranteed, my feet will swell at least half a size on a long hot-weather ride. I can't imagine that the time you'd lose to shoe slippage if they were a little loose would be as significant as what you'd lose to the pain when they're too small. You're always wiggling your toes and fiddling with your position and trying to scoot your toes back to relieve the discomfort instead of just pedalling.
 

· Michigoose
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821 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Now I'm stuck...but not really stuck.

I know my feet will swell, but I don't think the cleat position will affect me that much. Maybe it's a little overconfidence in my physique, but as a recent cycling convert from high school cross country, my knees can handle quite a bit.

I think I'm going to take a trip to the LBS tomorrow; as much as you all can help me nothing's going to beat having someone right there with my shoes, telling me what's up. My LBS is really good, and I know I'll be able to get some help from them.

Thank you all.
 
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