Friday I wanted to go out for another short ride to further tweak my bike for the new pedals and shoes that I had bought. On my last ride, my feet were somewhat uncomfortable with the cleats in front of the ball of my feet and I also had numbness in my hands along with lower back soreness and leg extent issues. All related to cleat and seat positions. I never thought that switching pedals and shoes would cause so much discomfort.
I started off with raising the seat about 1/2 a centimeter and moved the cleats of the shoes to the bottom position. I hopped on my bike and took off. I had a hard time to clip in and when I did it was an awkward feeling. My knees have an inward tilt to them, but I thought it was the shoes. Reading the hype on pamphlet, the shoes align your knees properly for cycling, they call it Body Geometry. Oh well, I kept on riding trying to get used to it.
By the time I got to the Mission Library (1 mile), I pulled over. I had to adjust the angle of the cleats for a more comfortable ride. After piddling with them I got back on the bike and rode around the huge parking lot. Wow! What a difference that made. My legs feel normal and clipping in and out is easy. The saddle height seems right too, so I kept on riding.
The rest of the ride was uneventful as I was just getting used to clip out at intersections and clipping back in. Getting to the point where clipping in and out is automatic takes time. I just hope I don’t fall over again!
By the time I got back home, I felt the seat needed a forward adjustment, so I went ahead and did that. The adjustment to the cleats made a real big difference, as they made for a comfortable ride.
Well, I think I got my bike tweaked again for the new equipment. I just need to do a minor front derailleur adjustment and I’m done. Lessons learned from this experience? Get your shoes locally. The sales representative experience in selling the correct shoe for your needs is something you do not get from on-line stores. Not only that, but you get to try different brands and sizes until satisfied. Another tip that I have learned, wait until the afternoon when your foot is the biggest. That’s right the biggest, your feet swell up after standing and walking all day. You want a shoe that fits well at that point.
Expect to tweak your bike setup as your body position changes with the new equipment. Don’t go on any major rides until you get all the new equipment dialed in after a few short rides. You are asking for trouble if you do.
By the way, the shoes I bought at the bike store are the Specialized Tahoe Mountain Bike Shoes.