New to cycling, I have a few concerns.

Discussion in 'Road Cycling' started by xplicity, Jun 13, 2011.

  1. xplicity

    xplicity New Member

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    Greetings,
    short story about myself. I use to ride and race bmx when I was younger, I have always enjoyed riding. I quit riding bmx after a wrist injury that had me in pain whenever I tried to ride a bicycle. Few years have passed and I have gotten back into riding and have gotten into the world of cycling. I picked up a bike, Raleigh Revenio, roughly 2 months ago. I am enjoying it a lot and try to go out every day. I am averaging 18-20 miles per ride. My concerns are as follows, I am beginning to be able to stand the pain in the backside after riding, but I am most concerned about the numbness in the feet. I begin to feel it after about 8-10 miles into the ride and am forced to take my feet off the pedals or stop until the tingling has ceased.

    Is there anything I can do to forgo this discomfort? I have tried to adjust my seat height to allow my legs more room when bending, position of my feet on the pedal and nothing seems to be working.

    Any advice for a novice?

    Mike
     
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  2. ProdigalCyclist

    ProdigalCyclist New Member

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    Tingling (and numbness) in the feet is a very common problem in cycling. Some of the things that I have done in the past to releive it are.

    Most importantly.... are you using clipless pedals and what type of shoes are you using if you are?

    Make sure you have pedals that offer a good "platform" smaller pedals are not always better.
    Make sure the fore-aft position on the cleats is correct... and side to side.... cleat position is crucial in foot comfort.
    Try out some insoles different insoles can make a huge difference.
    Also... something many people don't think about... back when I used to race I was having problems with numbness and I couldn't figure it out until I was really getting into finding the cause and I felt a lump in the inside of my shoe (on the footbed) it turns out the screws from my cleats were just slightly too long and they were causing a bump (very small bump) in the footbed of my shoes. I took the screws out and ground them down a little bit and reinstalled them and viola!!! Grinding the end down is the way to correct this because adding washers will raise the screw heads and cause them to grind on the pedal platform.
     
  3. Cat5Hurricane

    Cat5Hurricane New Member

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    Hey Mike

    A few things as I experienced similiar. First of all, when I started back to cycling last fall, I got the same lower back pain and numbness in my feet. For the back pain, if I lay on the floor and stretch one leg over my torso and other leg and crack my back, it literally prevents that pain. Part of it is your body adjusting to your position, but stretch out that lower back...it helps! I quit getting that bike pain after a few months. I try to crack my back prior to rides of 25+ miles and haven't experienced the back pain in months.

    On the shoes, there are several factors. I ride with and have read that the SPD cleats are better because of the larger contact on the pedal (hence more surface area allows better dispersion on energy and hence less fatique on the foot). The other type of cleat is the Look Cleo type (can't remember the name of it). The other important aspect is that you have the cleat properly aligned. Most bikeshops can do this but only do it if you buy the shoe from them or pay some high price to align them (I think mine wants ~$50). I did mine myself. The left one I got perfect and my right one looked perfect but I had an issue with my right foot going numb on 20+ mile rides. After getting tired of that, I finally turned it in more towards the pedal and I don't get any numbness till about 50 miles and it is only slight as opposed to severe. I may have turned it 1% but that made such a huge difference. The next thing is make sure you are using really thin socks. Most of my socks were tennis ankleless socks which are relatively thick compared to cycling socks (great for tennis, hell for cycling). I went to the Nike store and bought some very thin running ankleless socks. Lastly is your riding position. I am not an expert on this but my first few days, I just took a wrench with me and kept doing small corrections to my seat during my ride till I got where I was. Also, try different pedaling styles. I usually apply my force for about 270 degrees of the rotation. On climbs, I pedal 360 with most of my force apply to pulling up on the pedals. On descents, I tuck down passing other people pedaling (on group rides) while stretching my feet and leg muscles to keep them loose.

    Hope this helps!
     
  4. supersix 105

    supersix 105 New Member

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    try different saddle sizes.
     
  5. rparedes

    rparedes New Member

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    Back pain: Stretch hamstrings, hip flexors, ITB. Strengthen abs, upper body.
    Foot numbness: try loosening you shoe straps, try larger surface area platform or cleats, stiffer shoe sole
     
  6. TylerJDallas

    TylerJDallas New Member

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    I am experiencing foot numbness too. Seems to be less prevalent the more miles I tack onto the ODO. I will look into getting the proper SPD placement next time I go into my LBS.
     
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