Help Too much float?

Aug 27, 2012
581
234
73
London, UK
www.macrophotofly.com
#1
Summary
Gone back to Speedplays today on my new bike and felt like my calves were about to cramp after 20mins. Wondering if there can be too much float and, if so, is what I'm feeling the manifestation of it?

Detail
Started off with SPDs 3 years ago - fine until I started climbing in the mountains and then got pains in my knees (even after a fitting) so swapped to Speedplay. Very happy and no knee pain. However last summer when I was getting stronger and getting used to higher cadences (~95rpm) for longer I found I would suffer from mild cramp pain slowly building in my calves after 20minutes of constant high workout. Backing off and changing cadence resolved it, but never felt like the right solution.
Since snapping my bike in November I quickly rebuilt my old Boardman for the winter and slapped on the SPDs again with some SPD winter shoes. No issues with either knees or calves, but no big mountain rides. Finished building my new bike yesterday and put it on the trainer this morning with the Speedplays. 20 mins in and back came the cramp-like sensations....
 

George5

Maximum Pace
Oct 16, 2014
385
141
73
46
#2
Could be you are just going harder than your legs are used to. Cramp is usually associated with intensity so take it slow for a bit. Did you lower saddle height with the change of pedals? Most likely though it's conditioning.
 
Last edited:

macrophotofly

Maximum Pace
Aug 27, 2012
581
234
73
London, UK
www.macrophotofly.com
#3
Many thanks for the thoughts guys. Could be I have jumped back into it too hard. Don't think I am a toe pointer and the seat is set as per my last fit (but that was for speedplays too) - I'll measure the seat top to inside-of-shoe measurement on the SPD bike tonight and compare that measurement with the shoe-seat distance for the speedplay bike. Separately on toe/heel, I tend to have my heels in and my toes naturally more pointing outwards.

Where are the pics?!!?
Wheels are in the post, Farsports sent them just last night. Until they arrive I can train on the new bike with an old front wheel and the Kickr. Once they arrive I promise a wee video....
 
Likes: D'Pioneer

macrophotofly

Maximum Pace
Aug 27, 2012
581
234
73
London, UK
www.macrophotofly.com
#4
Back on the trainer this morning and definitely no toe pointing at any cadences or differing effort levels.

Got a real feeling today at sustained higher cadences my calf muscles on the inner side (inside Gastrocnemius?) of both legs were being used to keep my heels inwards (and subsequently toes slightly pointing outwards). They never felt like they were relaxing at any point in the rotation unless I dropped down the effort and/or cadence. As a result I'm going to try screwing in the outer side float adjusters so the foot is just against them (almost like the outside of the heel will be resting against the float end). See how that goes for the next session....
 

macrophotofly

Maximum Pace
Aug 27, 2012
581
234
73
London, UK
www.macrophotofly.com
#6
I will set up a video camera over the weekend and see if anything is happening. I have the bike fit app on the iPad and that allows me to slow it frame by frame, plus put lines on top with measureable angles on to check.

When I got fitted last year (May) Chuck noticed one knee coming out of line (right knee drifting out at the top of the stroke) and we put a angled insert between the cleat and shoe for two weeks to train the knee back into line. After two weeks it was back in line like a pistion and the insert came out. It had been enough to be noticeable to me at the time that my right knee was drifting at the top of the stroke, but I haven't noticed it this time.

Might be my knees want to drift outwards at the top of the stroke but my inner calf muscles are holding them in and that is causing them to be clenched all the time? - basically what you said but without seeing the knees actually drift out
 

George5

Maximum Pace
Oct 16, 2014
385
141
73
46
#7
I'd contact Chuck. He should be able to nut it out pretty quick. Bike fit is a constantly evolving paradigm, it change over an off season. My guess is you have a funky knee rotation and are over compensating for it with your feet.
 

andywood

Maximum Pace
Apr 8, 2008
1,516
1,193
133
Niigata
#8
I'd contact Chuck. He should be able to nut it out pretty quick. Bike fit is a constantly evolving paradigm, it change over an off season. My guess is you have a funky knee rotation and are over compensating for it with your feet.
I'd second that. Any time I change something that may affect my pedaling position ex: cleats, shoes, pedals, saddle, seat post, change in crank length, I get refitted. It doesn't have to be the whole procedure and shouldn't take long. Definitely call on Chuck!

Andy

www.jyonnobitime.com/time
 

macrophotofly

Maximum Pace
Aug 27, 2012
581
234
73
London, UK
www.macrophotofly.com
#11
Chuck's great and I'll get a fit in with him this year for sure given the new bike. However the nature of this issue is it tends to only show up after a minimum of 20 mins of hard labour and Chuck couldn't see anything wrong last year with my fit (aside from the knee slightly moving out and a slight adjustment to the seat). The problem was there last year too when I had the fit and we did discuss it at length
 

George5

Maximum Pace
Oct 16, 2014
385
141
73
46
#12
free advice is worth just that but get those knees tracking straight and then slowly start ramping up the intensity safe in the knowledge you aren't fudging up your body. Remember you only ever want to change one thing at a time. Check your saddle to pedal spindle height as well.