An admitted shoe geek waxes philosophical about running, triathlon, and life in general.
Comments welcome!

Friday, October 26, 2018

I’ve got a bee in my bonnet

A bur in my saddle.

A thorn in my side.

And whatever other metaphor you want to apply.

My shoe nerdiness is coming to the fore again, and I’ve got a thought that just won’t go away.

By way of explanation, I’ve grown very tired of shoes that assume I have bunions. And cycling shoes are the worst. At least with casual and running (even minimalist) shoes there are several options now that offer a properly shaped toe box that my toes aren’t forced sideways. But find something similar in a cycling shoe? Nada.
I must have really oddly shaped feet. Basically, I can draw a straight line from my heel to the ball of my foot, and continue on to my big toe. Is that really so strange? But what usually happens with a shoe that is shaped “normally” is that I end up with my little toe smashed into the outer portion of the toe box, while the ball area of the shoe ends up with a void. And that tends to pull the shoe upper away from the sole.

I've all but BEGGED Altra to make cycling shoes...

One of the last pair of Sidi shoes I've had was relegated to stationary trainer use due to being made full of holes. After some time I cut away the upper material over and around my bog toes to allow them more room. Even though my toes hung half-way out of the shoes, it was far more comfortable.

After feeling my big toes pressing into the show upper on one of my recent lunchtime rides, the bug bit. Hard.

Why not make my own cycling shoes? I’ve got a co-worker who is very experienced in composite materials and construction, and has expressed interest in building any of my cycling-related ideas. 

It can't be all THAT difficult, right?

And there’s Adam Hansen, a pro-cyclist who is known for going down a path seldom trod as far as riding position and such. He makes his own cycling shoes, and even offers them for sale – though the sale part is really to satisfy a UCI requirement and not so much that he’s looking for another income stream.  His shoes look very non-traditional, long on function and short on nods to fashion. When the cleat is heavier than the shoe…

So this has made me think. A thought that just won’t fade.

Make my own cycling shoes that actually FIT my feet. It’s not that far fetched.

Sure, I need another project like I need a hole in my head. But eventually I see it happening.

No comments: