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Cycling shoes?
CREATED: 02/04/13 by tkopan REPLIES: 15
tkopan's ravatar tkopan    JOINED: 4/7/12    POSTS: 55
Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/04/13 11:18 AM

Hey there --
I've been triathlon-ing since last spring, but have been using my running shoes for bikes/spins...I think it's time to make the switch to a more cycling-friendly shoe.
I'm not ready for clip-ins, but do people have any advice about very basic, preferably cheap/affordable cycling options?
What makes a good cycling shoe? I have no knowledge on the subject.

karlaj's ravatar karlaj    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 215
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/04/13 12:02 PM

There really aren't too many cycling shoes that don't have clip-in attachment points. Maybe consider a MTB shoe has the clip-in part recessed. You can usually get a deal for $50 on something like that. Google SPD mountain bike shoe for some options. You don't have to use the clip in part, but eventually you will...But it also depends on the type of riding you do. If it's trails, then MTN is really the way to go. If it's road, then you'll probably find road shoes (w/ clips) to be preferable.

Typically, a bike shoe should have a stiffer sole than a normal shoe, so it won't flex as much while pedalling. MTN bike shoes still flex much more than road cycling shoes b/c you have to sometimes walk in them.

Just curious, why not consider clip ins? They're easy to use and make cycling very nice.

tkopan's ravatar tkopan    JOINED: 4/7/12    POSTS: 55
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/04/13 5:48 PM

I don't know...clip-ins just scare me a little bit. It's a level of intensity I'm not quite ready for -- yet. I'm sure in a year or two, I'll be more ready to give it a try, I just don't know if I want to take the plunge quite yet.
Thanks for the feedback, though.

dsgrunning's ravatar dsgrunning    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 1481
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/04/13 6:11 PM

Come on, man up and just do it ;)

Whether you try the clip on tomorrow or two years from now, the results will be the same. You will pay your dues of falling off the bike then you will get proficient at it and wonder why you didn't do it any sooner.

If you purchase the clipless, I'll let you borrow my trainer for as long as you want. You can sit on your bike and practice until you feel comfortable enough to go to hains point to practice.

Make 2013 the year that you go clippless. My offer is a serious one. Drop me an email at number55555 at I'll even deliver it to you. Life is short, live it like you mean it :)


karlaj's ravatar karlaj    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 215
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/05/13 8:11 AM

Take the plunge! I was apprehensive too, but once I did switch, it was great! It takes about 5 min to get in and out a dozen times, and you'll think "wow, what was the big deal?" -Jason

morunner66's ravatar morunner66    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 728
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/05/13 8:58 AM

Check out Zappos - I got my tri shoes there.

And ahhh - I could never spin in sneakers - too many ankle issues and plantar fasciitis prone. Spin shoes are a must.

Oh and Clipless are the way to go - practice in a spin session then graduate to safe parking lot. Once you go clipless, you never go back.

rojojade's ravatar rojojade    JOINED: 1/19/11    POSTS: 458
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/05/13 10:21 AM

Do it! Do it!
One of us! One of us!

Clipless are very scary at first. You will fall. But not the physically painful kind of fall - more of an ego bursting fall where you are going .2 mph and you just forgot that you are cliped in - and of course in front of a group.

And Tuan is very serious about his offer - he was kind enough to drop off his trainer at my home before. Or you can go on a spin bike at the gym if you just get the SPD clips to practice clipping in and out.

Seriously, I tell anyone that wants to do a triathlon that it's one of the few bike upgrades that they need to do and learn.

tkopan's ravatar tkopan    JOINED: 4/7/12    POSTS: 55
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/05/13 12:46 PM

Thanks everyone, I <3 this club!

I'll think about making the switch, but I can't promise I've got the guts quite yet. I will keep in mind the offer though, Tuan, thanks!

If anyone has any tips on finding cheap/affordable clip-in options, that'd be appreciated as well, in any case.

Or more feedback on other options if I'm stubborn/scared. :)

tonigm's ravatar tonigm    JOINED: 1/1/10    POSTS: 19
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/05/13 1:57 PM

Just to give you the other view, I drank the koolaid my first season and clipped in. And yes, I fell the first time out - twice. But I did get the hang of them, and had some great rides that summer.

At the end of the season, however, I decided they weren't worth it. I just wasn't riding as aggressively as I wanted to. People suggested different shoes/pedals, but that was a lot more money for something that I'd already spent a lot of money on... so I've done the last two seasons unclipped, and let me say that transitions are a LOT faster this way.

As for biking shoes, I have a pair of coach sneakers (the ones that look like bike shoes) that I got on triple sale at Macy's. They have a nice flat/hard sole that makes them really comfortable for cycling.


tkopan's ravatar tkopan    JOINED: 4/7/12    POSTS: 55
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/05/13 5:07 PM

Thanks tonigm, that does help!

conartist's ravatar conartist    JOINED: 1/31/12    POSTS: 54
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/05/13 10:17 PM

Damn, about a foot rub while you're at it :). That's a helluva deal.

I don't see how intensity or aggressiveness factor into cycle shoes. You're still riding a bike and they're about as natural and common as goggles for swimmers. If you want to improve, get the shoes - if you've been riding since last spring I'm sure you'll be more than prepared to handle it.

HolliMarie's ravatar HolliMarie    JOINED: 6/21/11    POSTS: 264
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/06/13 7:08 AM

tkopan I have to say go for the clipless! You'll be nervous at first, but you can ride down to Hains Point in tennis shoes, then slip on your cycling shoes once there and do some loops just getting comfortable. You'll notice you will be a lot more efficient when you clip in and your legs (quads) specifically will be more fresh for the run!

I have a pair of unused LG cycling shoes, size 38 I believe if you're in need of shoes. Hope to see a post soon about your clipless adventures :)

morunner66's ravatar morunner66    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 728
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/06/13 7:52 AM

Make sure you get some shoes with some wiggle room. At least, my feet tend to swell in the summer on long rides and I had to go up 2 sizes from my old shoes.

dmazzone's ravatar dmazzone    JOINED: 1/30/13    POSTS: 2
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/06/13 9:30 AM

So back in the day, meaning last year, I was given a trek 1200 for free. Yea, you read that right. The bike had clip-in pedals, aero bars, the whole 9 yards.

I was frugal and started riding the bike, with clip-in pedals, using my running shoes. Don't ask me how I didn't break or roll an ankle.

I finally invested in a quality pair of biking shoes. It makes all the difference.

Full disclosure, you will fall trying to clip out. I was getting cocky and by my 3rd time out I ate it, hard.


SBsteph's ravatar SBsteph    JOINED: 1/24/11    POSTS: 110
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/06/13 12:35 PM

I second the idea mentioned above about spin classes. I bought shoes and used them for a season indoors before I got into the whole road biking idea. It felt very natural to switch over to road biking because i already knew how the shoes worked with the pedals- it was much less intimidating. I also used the campus pedals (flat on one side clipless SPD on the other). I've since transitioned to other equipment and am willing to part with the shoes and pedals - pm me if interested!

wculleton's ravatar wculleton    JOINED: 9/17/12    POSTS: 6
RE: Cycling shoes?
POSTED: 2/06/13 10:38 PM

Going clipless is biggest upgrade you can make in cycling. Going aero is great but having total control over your pedal stroke will make you a better cyclist.

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