Problem: Toe Numbness
I bought a set of 2600 Pros cycling insoles and tried them out the other day on a 110km ride. Pleasingly the toe numbness I had previously had in my 4 smallest toes on longer rides was mostly gone. Unfortunately when using the insoles I had numbness in my big toe and also pressure / pain all the way down the outside of the bottom of my foot in the area of my 5th metatarsal bone. I also had unusually massive calf cramping which may have been partially due to the insole configuration. The only other time I had cramping this bad was when my cleats accidentally got moved all the way forward. I had put the 22 size insert in. I guess the next step is to put the size 18 in and try that out? Any tips for me?
Solution: G8 Performance ARCHTECH™ PRO 2600’s
Toe numbness is caused by pressure to the main blood supply to your feet which generally runs between your big toe and your second toe. Having numbness in your other toes is peripheral but I still think the main cause is closing off the main blood supply.
This can be caused by a number of things – shoes too tight (or tightened down too tightly) and collapsed metatarsal heads.
In order to help alleviate this, the insoles aim is to lift the met heads from behind which means pushing the arch piece as far forward as possible. This promotes blood flow and helps your feet splay and toes spread out under load. Tightening down of the shoe should not need to be such an issue in this circumstance.
Pain on the 5th met – usually this is caused by the foot being cantered so as most of the pressure falls to the outside of the foot. The foot is designed to roll inwards or pronate slightly in order to expel as much energy as possible. It sounds like your foot is not pronating at all and could be caused by weak arch muscles or improper bike set up.
Calf cramping – this is a result of your foot finally moving inside of your shoe. We would prefer you to ease into wearing your G8’s and not do 110km straight off the bat!!
Your arch is starting to move under load for the first time ever! So it’s like going to the gym after a long hiatus. Stuff is going to hurt and be sore until your body gets used to it. Especially considering the KM’s you are doing.
We would recommend sticking with the 22’s on the foot which doesn’t have the pain on the 5th met and push the arch as far forward as you can. The other foot you can drop down to the 18 but I don’t suspect you will be there for long. As your foot gets used to flexing and your arch gets stronger you will need to adjust the arch height and/or position to accommodate.
When you are going through the pedal stroke imagine your foot is rolling inward slightly, your foot is splaying and expelling maximal force.