Hot spots on feet

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Hot spots on feet

Postby nickobec » Sat Feb 12, 2011 12:07 am

Been riding for a few years, use 3 bikes regularly, two roadies with spd pedals and a singlespeed with clipins.

I have made big improve my performance of the past few months and now I am getting hotspots in my feet right above the cleats on either road bike, with either pair of shoes (5 year old Specialized MTB shoes and 18 month old carbon soled Nike) and quite different pedals

The last few rides have been really painful. So I finally tried my my Pearl Isuma road shoes and SPD-SL pedals. Even worse, my feet really hurt, (not I did set some fast times, before having to stopped after 25km to massage my feet.

My singlespeed (which is only 55cm frame compared to 58cm for the roadies and far more aggressive position), I was not suffering the same problem. Though I got sore feet after a 40km ride last week, that I originally put do to aggravating my sore feet from riding in cleats the day before.

So I swapped to cages for a week on one roadie. The first couple of rides were recovery rides, no pains, though a little stiffness at the second ride. Today was a different story, riding at pace my feet where on fire, the whole width of the foot just behind the ball of the foot. I had to slow for a detour the feet recovery, before the went back into pain mode.

So any suggestion of how to fix it?
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by BNA » Sat Feb 12, 2011 2:39 am

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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby foo on patrol » Sat Feb 12, 2011 2:39 am

Have you tried loosening off the straps a bit?
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Hot spots on feet

Postby sogood » Sat Feb 12, 2011 5:59 am

With onset at measly 25km, I'd agree the first thing to look at is the shoe size and likely over tightening of forefoot straps. I get the occasional problem but that's typically with a hard 140+km ride on a warm day.
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Hot spots on feet

Postby Comedian » Sat Feb 12, 2011 6:19 am

I have this issue. My shoes have to be loosened off after an hour or so and then again as required.
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby bosvit » Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:29 am

I am having the same problems nick, will be interesting to follow this thread.

I have just recently bought some reasonable shoe inners (or what ever they are called) and they seem to have helped. Only done one half decent ride of 40km with them in but I was getting serious sore feet after 30km previously.

Hopefully I can fit a few km's in this morning, it all depends if my sons cricket team bats first or bowls first, hopefully they bowl as he opens the bowling and bats down the order so I can fit a couple of hours in between :wink:
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby bosvit » Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:32 am

Oh another thing that helped me was to move the cleat further back on the shoe so that you had more foot in front of the centre of the pedal (recom from LBS). I was also told I was tending to put all my power output straight down and try to concentrate on coming up and over a little more. This probably helped the most but my legs started complaining :lol:

Seat height is another one. It may well be worth dropping a few mm on the roadies. Have you measured from low pedal to seat on the roadies V the single?
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby nickobec » Sat Feb 12, 2011 9:30 am

It is not the shoes - 4 different pairs including pair ridden in over 5 years and many thousand kms

with the cages, I did loosen the straps for yesterday's trip home, after noticing one was tighter than the other and that foot was giving me more problems, no luck. Both still sore 16 hrs later.

Will do some measuring and checking seat height and for-aft positioning tomorrow. Hopefully the 2 roadies are different from the SS and I will move one roadie to more than the SS and see if that fixes it.

From the last few days I am sure it has more to do with the effort I put in more than anything. Which might mean changing how I pedal.
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby foo on patrol » Sat Feb 12, 2011 9:35 am

Another thing, are your feet swelling with fluid?
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby sogood » Sat Feb 12, 2011 11:41 am

nickobec wrote:It is not the shoes...

Then it's your foot! :wink:
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby Mustang » Sat Feb 12, 2011 11:59 am

bosvit wrote:I am having the same problems nick, will be interesting to follow this thread.
I have just recently bought some reasonable shoe inners (or what ever they are called) and they seem to have helped. Only done one half decent ride of 40km with them in but I was getting serious sore feet after 30km previously.

Ditto to all above, Bosvit," what type of liners did you put in?" I have just purchased the socks featured here on the BNA website "Feetures" I will try them & post the results.
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby nickobec » Sat Feb 12, 2011 7:52 pm

foo on patrol wrote:Another thing, are your feet swelling with fluid?

No, the feet just feel painful and hot like the pedals are on fire.

After a ride, the muscles behind the balls feel tense and bruised, with cages it is a straight line across the foot with cleats a circle.

Rode the singlespeed today with tender feet and it became obvious the pain has a lot to do with my pedal stroke.

Riding at a "normal" pace, my pedal stroke is more circular and was not aggravating my feet.

As soon as I put any effort in, I was punching straight down with my legs. I get a good gain in power, but my feet start hurting immediately.

Surprisingly punching real hard at moderate cadence (60-70 rpm) caused less pain the punching at high cadence (90-100rpm)
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby foo on patrol » Sat Feb 12, 2011 9:26 pm

I am noting your thread about betablockers and am wondering if these are having any affect on you? :|
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby sogood » Sat Feb 12, 2011 9:37 pm

Hot spot has been contributed to the compression of nerves in the forefoot. This has been associated with over narrow and/or overtightened shoes, as well as insufficiently stiff or shoes being too stiff, and anatomical reasons. I have not read one solution that solves all cases, so it's worthwhile to think about all the possibilities and try.
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby nickobec » Sat Feb 12, 2011 11:18 pm

foo on patrol wrote:I am noting your thread about betablockers and am wondering if these are having any affect on you? :|

Been riding with betablockers for over a year now, it has only been the last couple of months I have been having problems with my feet

sogood wrote:Hot spot has been contributed to the compression of nerves in the forefoot. This has been associated with over narrow and/or overtightened shoes, as well as insufficiently stiff or shoes being too stiff, and anatomical reasons. I have not read one solution that solves all cases, so it's worthwhile to think about all the possibilities and try.


As I have said before it happens on 3 different pedal systems involving 5 different shoes and 5 different pedals so I think we can rule out shoes.

My thinking is that I am heavily compressing the nerves in my forefeet by how hard I drive my legs down.
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby foo on patrol » Sun Feb 13, 2011 6:07 am

Maybe see if you can get an ultra sound done on the foot and ankle area, to see if there is any restriction of blood flow also. :idea: I had one done and they told me that I have restricted circulation in my feet or foot, can't remember which now. :roll:
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby sogood » Sun Feb 13, 2011 8:45 am

nickobec wrote:As I have said before it happens on 3 different pedal systems involving 5 different shoes and 5 different pedals so I think we can rule out shoes.
My thinking is that I am heavily compressing the nerves in my forefeet by how hard I drive my legs down.

The relationship b/n how you ride and symptom does not explain the pathological basis of this symptom. Yet again, I am not aware of any definitive answers on it. Irrespective, how's your foot anatomy? Flat footed? Any other anatomic variations compared with the "perfect foot"? Have you tried supportive shoe inserts? I don't know the answer but speculating here. 25km really is way too short compared of all the descriptions I've read about on the internet.
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby bosvit » Sun Feb 13, 2011 8:49 am

Mustang wrote:
bosvit wrote:I am having the same problems nick, will be interesting to follow this thread.
I have just recently bought some reasonable shoe inners (or what ever they are called) and they seem to have helped. Only done one half decent ride of 40km with them in but I was getting serious sore feet after 30km previously.

Ditto to all above, Bosvit," what type of liners did you put in?" I have just purchased the socks featured here on the BNA website "Feetures" I will try them & post the results.

Footcare Ultra Sport

They have definitely helped, but also caused a minor problem in that they have a built in arch support which causes mild cramping/tingling in my feet like when you get new shoes and have to break them in, I am assuming this will settle down soon. They are more designed around heel strike problems but my thoughts were give these a try and if they help I will fork out the extra money for the full gel inners you can get.


@Nick

I went for 2 rides yesterday mostly working on my hot spot problems and something I came up with or more to the point expanded on was I dropped my seat 5mm and made sure I kept my heel down which seemed to flatten off the shoe and even out the downwards pressure across more of my foot which did make a difference.

Also something else I forgot to mention is the sore feet thing seems to be a bruising of sorts so I have had to reduce my ride distances to the point that my feet are not hurting too much by the time I finish and this is also allowing me to slowly build up the distance as my feet toughen a little. I have found that when I go too hard it takes 2-3 days for my feet to stop hurting and if I ride on top of this it gives my feet no time to recover.

Just a thought, hope it helps :)
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby nickobec » Mon Feb 14, 2011 2:03 pm

Looks like I have found a likely suspect, I used the competitive cyclist fit calculator and my current seat height was 20mm more that the highest recommended for my inside leg measurement. Got the same results from other sources. So dropped the seat on two bikes and as soon as my feet recover, time to test the theory and also learn to pedal in circles.
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby Comedian » Mon Feb 14, 2011 7:08 pm

Thank you to all.. this thread is GOLD.

I've got the burning feet thing so I'm watching with interest. I've got some long rides coming up so need to get this sorted as it's going to be a real problem for me doing much over 100 in a day. :o
Once you can climb hills on a bike it's all downhill. :mrgreen:

Hopefully I'll know what that's like..... one day. :shock: :lol:

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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby Apple » Mon Feb 14, 2011 8:53 pm

I think it's arthritis, It’s just a thought. :?
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby Mustang » Tue Feb 15, 2011 9:19 am

After reading this thread, i re-instated my foot roller. Its a Aust. geographic twin wooden serrated jobbie. Amazing how it smooths out those lumps & bumps after a few goes, may also help you with circulation?
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby nickobec » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:25 pm

It is amazing what a difference a few mm make.

Dropped the seat 20mm, right foot was good, if a little tender,my left foot started developing a mild hot spot under the cleat and radiating out in line (1st time for that in cleats, but exactly like flats with clips, so I assume nerves have not recovered completely) about 20km in. So dropped the seat another 10mm, instant relief for the left foot. As I continued the right foot started developing a hot spot, I dropped the seat a further 5mm after another 7km.

The next 15km, the centre of my feet still tender from the past couple of weeks and then the outside of my feet start going to sleep (an issue I have had with the shoes I was wearing in the past), so that made my attempts to keep good pedalling style and a cadence of 105 to 110 difficult, so dropped into the big chain ring and ground it out at 75 to 80rpm for the last few kms.

I need to give my feet some more rest to recover completely.
I then need to experiment with seat height a little, anything from up 10mm from current position to down another 10mm.
I need to move my cleats back a few mm as recommended by Steve Hogg.
Work out why the outside of the feet go to sleep in these shoes.

PS it is definitely saddle position and how I pedal that cause the hotspots. I did a couple of 400m sections standing today, no difficulties, no pain, no hotspots.
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby sogood » Tue Feb 15, 2011 12:39 pm

35mm is a huge change for saddle height. Unless you've previously tip-toed on your ride, this is pretty amazing. :shock:
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Re: Hot spots on feet

Postby nickobec » Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:47 am

sogood wrote:35mm is a huge change for saddle height. Unless you've previously tip-toed on your ride, this is pretty amazing. :shock:


Probably end up being 27mm, moving it back to try to find the sweet spot for my right foot.

And then is really only 17mm because:

1. I stupidly increased seat height by 5mm to see if it would help my hot foot problem
2. This bike has 175mm cranks compared to 170mm of the Singlespeed and 172.5mm of the other roadie, so the saddle needs to be 5mm/2.5mm closer to the BB - and I had not factored that in.

And it was a huge change, total different feel and worked different muscles on today's ride more quads than calves complaining at the end.
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