Results 1 to 23 of 23
  1. #1
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: agrats84's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    27

    Toes are Numb after Ride

    Like I've mentioned in earlier posts, I've been riding for 2 weeks and have worked myself up to a 21 mile ride today. I noticed about a third of the way in that my toes were really cold and kind of tingling. I stretched them out and moved them around as best I could without stopping once. I finally got home, took off my shoes and walked around a little and it's like both sets were numb/ asleep.

    When I bought my bike last week, I also bought new Mavic Rush shoes with the ratchet system. I'm wondering if I had them too tight or if it's the way I was pedaling. I don't really know if there is a technique to prevent this, but it was really uncomfortable. I also don't want my shoes too loose because that would also be counterproductive.

    Can someone help me out? Thanks

  2. #2
    Just Plain Bitter
    Reputation: rward325's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    8,630
    This can be caused by a number of different things.

    1. Cleat placement
    2. Bike fit
    3. Shoes are to narrow or tight

    I would take a look at all of these.
    Quote Originally Posted by Catzilla;
    Like, if "troubling" were a level seven worry, "concerning" would be a six, with "frightening" being an eight and "unexplained genital rash" being a nine.

    2007 Pegoretti Duende Campy SR 11 Campagnolo Neutron
    2009 Look 586 Campy SR 11 HED Ardennes/HED Jet 6
    2012 Raliegh Roper - Stock for now

  3. #3
    Endurance Cyclist
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    183
    Can also be the socks. Some compression socks can be a bit too snug, especially on larger riders and can cause numb toes. Shoes too tight is also common and probably the #1 culprit. Cleat position/saddle position also common though with saddle (and overall bike fit) you would get numbness by 20 miles in more than just the toes, so I would focus more on shoe tightness, cleat and socks first.

  4. #4
    Honey Smack!
    Reputation: Sylint's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    7,995
    are you clenching your toes when you ride? When I hammered hard I had a tendency to clench my toes which would numb my toes...forcing myself to flex them and relax helped tremendously.
    I know we just met and this is crazy....

  5. #5
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    3,146
    Agree with all of the above. As far as size goes- the shoes could just be too small or the toe box could just be too tight for your foot. I do know that some shoes fit me all around, while others will fit my heel, mid-foot, but be too tight in the toe box. That sort of stuff often doesn't show itself in short rides but will when you push a couple of hours.

    I had this exact problem with some MTB shoes I had for years. I'd get numb toes. I don't know why it took so long for me to take care of it (I'm cheap), but when I simply bought a different brand of shoe -selected by actualy trying them on rather than mail order - I knew immediately and for many hundreds of miles thereafter that it was a night and day difference.

    Also, temperature. Typical (non-winter) bike shoes are very, very poor for keeping your feet warm. In fact, they're usually specifically designed to shed warmth.

    You can't over come this by wearing heavier socks because heavier socks will make the shoes fit tigher, reducing circulation and therefore actually making your toes colder rather than warmer.

    If you think this might be an issue - that you wore heavier socks because you thought it would help, go back to your other socks and get overbooties to keep your feet warmer.

    In a pinch, an old trick for XC skiers before they made ready to wear overboots for cold days, was to just pull an oversized rag wool sock over the boot and cut a hole in the proper place to clip into the binding. Same principal could work for cycling - would look bad, but be warm. Wind resistant booties are better though.

  6. #6
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    674
    Agree with Camilo about booties. Temperature is a bigger problem than you think this time of year. It would be well worth your money to get a pair of neoprene overshoes; they'll make sure you stay warm plus you won't get wet when it rains! (well you will, but only a little bit).

  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: agrats84's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    27
    Thanks for the responses

    It was a bit chilly out there today so I think that played a factor. My shoes are actually a tad big so the issue of crunching my toes in is out.

    I also think my top ratchet was too tight so I'll loosen it a tad next ride.

    I'll also work on making sure they are relaxed when pumping away.

  8. #8
    donuts?
    Reputation: asciibaron's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Posts
    8,941
    i have been riding for 20+ years, fit, cleat position, and socks and shoes have all been adjusted and readjusted, changed, and replaced yet my toes still tingle. tried every thing i could ever find to remedy the problem yet it persists.

    welcome to cycling.
    -Steve
    Quote Originally Posted by Chain
    Next time, save your energy for tomorrows ride and try not to come in 6th.

  9. #9
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: SlurpeeKing's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    430
    I had the same issue when I first started 1.5 years ago. My first change was ditching the socks, I live in S FL and it's hot and my feet also swell, so the socks made my shoes fit too tight. Havent had a problem since and my feet stay so much cooler. This summer I plan on adding wrist sweat bands around my ankles to catch the sweat going down my legs. LOL.

  10. #10
    banned from the museum
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    6,787
    Seat position. I think you may be sitting on the narrow part of your seat, instead of having your sit bones on the saddle.

  11. #11
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    106
    I hope all these previous comments are correct, but I had this numb toes thing all my adult life along with my foot falling "asleep" frequently or the dreaded "CharleyHorse" and all the symptoms would occur even without bike riding although I was riding a lot at the time. It turned out to be a pinched artery in my heart that finally collapsed one day in my late 30's and almost killed me.... Once that stent healed, my toes were always warm - even sweating for the first time, lots more hair grew on my lower legs and I never felt that tingling or numbness again.

  12. #12
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: SlurpeeKing's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Posts
    430
    Quote Originally Posted by Tucson_2011 View Post
    I hope all these previous comments are correct, but I had this numb toes thing all my adult life along with my foot falling "asleep" frequently or the dreaded "CharleyHorse" and all the symptoms would occur even without bike riding although I was riding a lot at the time. It turned out to be a pinched artery in my heart that finally collapsed one day in my late 30's and almost killed me.... Once that stent healed, my toes were always warm - even sweating for the first time, lots more hair grew on my lower legs and I never felt that tingling or numbness again.
    wow, thats pretty scary. Glad it worked out.

  13. #13
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Posts
    140
    Numb feet can be caued by a lot of things, many of which have been mentioned above. You mentioned your shoes are a tad big. Do your feet slip at all when you ride? You can be irritating the nerve at the front or your ankle.

    You also mentioned you're new to cycling. I used to get numb feet during every ride, but it slowly just went away. I think it had to do with my cycling gait becoming more efficient and me getting stronger.

    When I used to feel the numbness coming on, I would alter my gait slightly, such as pointing my toes down. Also, unclipping and shaking my feet out helped.

  14. #14
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: DY123's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    191
    The nerves that go to your feet run right through your lower back. How's your back? How's your back when in a riding position?
    Dave Ybarrola
    Ybarrola Bicycles
    www.ybarrola.com

  15. #15
    irony intended
    Reputation: carlislegeorge's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    865
    Follow all the the suggestions so far, but also don't forget to coast and wiggle your feet/toes occasionally, have to remember to try to keep them loosened up before things go south even worse...

  16. #16
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Posts
    96
    asciibaron,

    Thanks for posting. I'm in the same boat. It's nice to now I'm not alone. I read threads like this and wish I could find the magic bullet to end my tingling toes but nothing has ever worked. I'll go ride with someone knew and first time I shake my legs/feet to relieve the numbness and tingling the "fit, shoes, form" conversation starts. I just politely listen, smile and nod. I've racked up some nice podiatrist charges too. My guess is that it's a physiological thing and some are just prone to it.

  17. #17
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    2,492
    While the ratchet strap might be too tight I've found the middle strap too tight is usually the source of most foot discomfort. ymmv

  18. #18
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    267
    I do get numb toes when it's colder, and find that I need to be very careful about how tight I make my shoes. I back off a little more when it's cold, and wear booties (rather than warmer socks). Taking your feet out of the cleat every so often does help. If you have to stop occasionally, see if you can alternate the foot you put down. If I always put down my left foot, then guess what - my right foot toes are numb by the end of the ride.

  19. #19
    xxl
    xxl is online now
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    20,009
    A neuroma (more specifically, a Morton's neuroma) can be the cause of neuropathy in the foot. If you've been to a podiatrist a lot, though, I'd think the doctor would've made the diagnosis, since it's supposed to be pretty easy to tell if you have one.

    The treatment is all the other stuff people mentioned about flexing, circulation, cleat position, etc., and if it gets too bad, you get surgical on Morton's azz.

  20. #20
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    186
    I had this problem, and lived with it for a couple of years before I took some advice on another forum, and moved the cleats as far back (toward the heel) as possible on my shoes. Problem solved.

  21. #21
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: thalo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    327
    Quote Originally Posted by rward325 View Post
    This can be caused by a number of different things.

    1. Cleat placement
    2. Bike fit
    3. Shoes are to narrow or tight

    I would take a look at all of these.
    when i started riding shoe width was my issue.

  22. #22
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: agrats84's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    27
    Thanks for all the suggestions. I am still trying to get used to the bike and find the sweet spot for my seat. Today while riding I did notice that I was sitting a little bit forward and am going to try to adjust the seat first. Then if that doesn't work, I'll change my cleat position. With the warmer weather coming, I'll see if that makes any difference.

    Thanks

  23. #23
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: rbnyc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Posts
    92
    All of these are good suggestions and with luck you'll figure out how to fix it. I suspect you just need to get some miles in and your body will become acclimated.

    I've got a similar problem. I put a post up here a couple of weeks ago saying that I was likely to get a pair of Vittoria Hora shoes off of Ebay but was concerned that the are 1/2 size metric smaller than what I wear. I got them and--man 'O' man--are they ever beautiful shoes. It's such a cliche, "Italian craftmanship", etc. but damn they are nice. And they make my toes numb. Crap.

    If I had tried them on in a store I'd have thought they fit perfectly. They seem fine just trying on. On my first ride I might have made it 8 miles before they started hurting. About ten rides into it I did 35 miles with no numbness (or pain) in my left foot and moderate numbness in my right. Even weirder, my left foot is about 1/2 inch longer than my right but it's the right that seems to be having the problems so size seems to be not the only factor.

    Another strange thing is that last summer after two years of pure comfort with my Shimano shoes I started to get a hot spot on my right foot after about 60 or 70 miles. Weird.

    So this is my question: anyone had any luck in transforming a pair of shoes from painful to comfortable? I know one answer would be, "Well, yeah, that's why I suggested moving the cleats, saddle, etc".

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

2015 LIGHTS SHOOTOUT

Hot Deals See All Hot Deals >>

Interbike Featured Booths

Check out the hottest road bike products from these brands!



















See All Interbike Coverage - Click Here »


Latest RoadBike Articles


Latest Videos

RoadbikeReview on Facebook