What's new

(Summer) Burning feet

Elzico2012

Maximum Pace
Jan 29, 2014
152
191
With the autumn, this post might be an "off-season topic", but I was wondering if you have had burning feet during your hot days rides, and how you fixed the issue.
I have had constantly that problem during long rides on hot and sunny days. It generally occurs past 80-100km, when I start to feel my feet getting hot, just above the cleats, and this is getting so intense sometimes that I must loose the shoe laces or take of the feet from the pedals and slow the pace.
The heat, reflection of the sun/heat energy from the surface road below the shoes, the friction at the contact cleat/pedal (I use the shimano 105 aluminium pedals), the intensity of the effort. the breathing/air flow inside the shoes are certainly the factors. My shoes are in the 15-20000 yens range, good shoes but certainly not the top one in term of air flow. Aluminium is a good heat conductor so I guess that aluminium pedals do not help.
I remember the pro guys putting water on their shoes on hot days.
Anyway, if someone has a good recipe to cure the problem, any advice is welcomed.
 

andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
3,019
3,230
Cycling specific socks and insoles may help.

Loosen your shoes as you ride (feet expand as they get hot).

Loosen your shoes fully on downhills when you don't have to pedal.

And yes pooring cold water on your feet and legs in general really helps. If there is a cold stream, submersion of your feet is even better.

Andy
 

Half-Fast Mike

Lanterne Rouge-et-vert
May 22, 2007
4,464
3,391
I remember the pro guys putting water on their shoes on hot days.
I've done that before. Gone paddling in streams too. Depending on sock material it can lead to blisters, though.

My preferred preventative is Shimano cycling sandals - current model is SH-SD500. They're for SPD cleats, though. Don't know about triangular racer cleats.

Baby powder/foot powder can help a lot with absorbing moisture, and thus reducing friction and blistering.

Or... slow down, stop, and rest if uncomfortable. (What's the rush?|)
 

Elzico2012

Maximum Pace
Jan 29, 2014
152
191
Thanks for all that advices.

Cycling specific socks and insoles may help.
I might try this one. The socks are ok so I will search for better insoles.

Loosen your shoes as you ride
I do it but certainly too late during the rides. When it is not tight enough, as you know, we loose some power and speed. Which is ok, but on some good days, slowing down when the legs and heart are still working well is hurting my pride :)

My preferred preventative is Shimano cycling sandals - current model is SH-SD500.

Very interesting, I did not know these shoes.
I will buy the sandals soon and try them, to see if the winter socks are really efficient :)

It may also help if you just give up going wherever you intended to, i.e. get cold feet
Right, let's go for a cold beer !:)

What are the shoes and pedals? And how intense are you riding when you get hot spots ?
Pedal Shimano 105 SPD-SL
I now have the Specialized Torch 2.0 (https://www.specialized-onlinestore.jp/shop/g/g61021-3136/)
Before, it was the Lintaman Road Comp (https://item.rakuten.co.jp/cw-ohtaki/752d/)
Intensity, well. Riding in the hilly Boso Peninsula. Average generally, I would say between 26-29 for over 100km (I am 48yo)
 

andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
3,019
3,230
Just to add, I experience the same "hot spots" when racing the 300km Tokyo-Itoigawa.

That's early May, so not so hot. So it may be more of distance issue, rather than heat issue.

On the descents I loosen the ratchets on my Sidis and wiggle my toes, arch my feet etc.

As for losing power by loosening the shoes, I don't think this is necessarily true. You want to adjust your shoes multiple times on a long ride to get the best performance / comfort balance.

Are you using lace up shoes? If you are riding long distance, ratchets are much better as you can adjust them on the fly.

Andy
 

kiwisimon

Maximum Pace
Dec 14, 2006
3,765
1,987
Pedal Shimano 105 SPD-SL
I now have the Specialized Torch 2.0 (https://www.specialized-onlinestore.jp/shop/g/g61021-3136/)
Before, it was the Lintaman Road Comp (https://item.rakuten.co.jp/cw-ohtaki/752d/)
Intensity, well. Riding in the hilly Boso Peninsula. Average generally, I would say between 26-29 for over 100km (I am 48yo)
It's probably too late in the year now to try things now but next year, loosen off the BOA a few clicks, the velcro tabs should be really loose, as thin as possible insoles, wear as thin a socks as possible (I never wear socks unless it's down to about 8 degrees or lower) move the cleat as far as you can to the rear of the shoes and slide the saddle forward the same MMs. (also a bike fit would probably help as you may not be fully enagging all your leg muscles which makes the ball of the foot do more work). @andywood advice about unweighting things on the downhills is also spot on.
Hope these help. Nice area Boso.
 
Last edited:

baribari

Maximum Pace
May 28, 2010
1,287
914
This is literally called "hot foot." Your shoes are either too small, or just don't suit your feet.
Your feet aren't actually overheating... your blood flow and nerves are getting pinched.

As others have said, your forefoot straps/BOAs/laces should be as loose as possible. Cycling shoes only need to be tight when sprinting.
 

joewein

Maximum Pace
Oct 25, 2011
3,253
2,966
I also used to have issues with circulation in my feet on some rides before using cycling-specific shoes. Using SPD shoes improved it and switching to wider shoes completely solved the issue. Size is not just about the length of the foot in cm, many models also have a regular and a wide version for a given size.

I am a big fan of BOA ratchets but your Specialized Torch 2.0 uses that already. The ratchet makes it very easy to loosen and tighten the shoes as needed without stopping.

I think a lot of people run their shoes tight for climbing so they can both push and pull on the pedals when you've maxed out the lowest gear. Having low enough gearing, I don't really have to do that on either of my bikes. I can just spin my way up the climb :)
 

Elzico2012

Maximum Pace
Jan 29, 2014
152
191
The solution could be then:
- Loosen the shoes. That's true I rather like tight shoes and it does not help. With the Specialized Torch 2.0, it got loose with as time goes, but being stubborn, my uncontrolled hands are moving downward to tighten...
- A proper bike feet
- Checking the cleats position
- Break during the rides (well, wife is waiting at home.....:))

I just found this summarizing the causes


diagram.jpg
 

jdd

Maximum Pace
Hardest Crash
Jul 26, 2008
3,076
1,511
Along with the loosen-the-shoes/not-too-tight theme...

I have some nagging foot problems that the docs have never figured out. While it is likely a cascade of things, more than one cause, ages ago with the old style cleated shoes I used to pull the straps down really tight, wanting to be as locked on as humanly possible. I think this may be one aspect of it, one factor.

Get wide shoes, especially ones with a big toe/forefoot box.
 

Elzico2012

Maximum Pace
Jan 29, 2014
152
191
By the way, my father used to be a dedicated cyclist, he has now an hallux valgus (bunion) on both feet. Although this might have developed naturally, long hours on the bike have probably exacerbated that.
I should better check my position on the bike
 

Kangaeroo

Maximum Pace
Jan 24, 2018
926
1,102
Lots of great advice has been passed around already, so I probably shouldn't add anything...but I will because I have had so much foot trouble with riding. I didn't get hot feet, but circulation was a problem year-round even though 98% of my rides are short being 30 km or less. My solution has been to move away from cycling shoes and revert to flats. I haven't really had any foot issues since. I have slowed down, though, which I attribute to getting fatter and older.
 

Chuck

Maximum Pace
Feb 7, 2011
1,307
1,500
Lots of great advice has been passed around already, so I probably shouldn't add anything...but I will because I have had so much foot trouble with riding. I didn't get hot feet, but circulation was a problem year-round even though 98% of my rides are short being 30 km or less. My solution has been to move away from cycling shoes and revert to flats. I haven't really had any foot issues since. I have slowed down, though, which I attribute to getting fatter and older.

I got the hot foot about 80 km into a ride, especially when doing some climbing. I was using flats. I figured it was circulation issues so I tried loosening the shoestrings, changing my foot position, new insoles, etc. Nothing worked. Finally, I took the opposite approach to Kangaeroo and switched to clipless pedals (Eggbeaters and Speedplay) from flat pedals and wear MTB shoes (Giro). That solved my problem completely, and I no longer dread the 80km mark. YMMV, so do whatever works for you.
 

Nuff

Maximum Pace
Jul 28, 2020
103
100
Lots of great advice has been passed around already, so I probably shouldn't add anything...but I will because I have had so much foot trouble with riding. I didn't get hot feet, but circulation was a problem year-round even though 98% of my rides are short being 30 km or less. My solution has been to move away from cycling shoes and revert to flats. I haven't really had any foot issues since. I have slowed down, though, which I attribute to getting fatter and older.
I see the shoes you got from me didn't work out?

I also get hot foot, usually 80-100km into a ride I've to call it quits. Sometimes I can stretch it to 120km, but the harder I go, the faster the issue will appear and sometimes my toes will go numb. The toe box on my shoes isn't big enough and I need more space there and I'm done buying shoes online from overseas, so I will put up with it for a while and try to get a better fitting pair once I'm able to go to visit Australia.

Also in my searches around Tokyo for better fitting shoes I've found that Y's road Kawasaki has Lake shoes, apparently they should be a lot more spacious than other brands, so they might be worth checking out.
 
Top Bottom