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Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
CREATED: 04/23/09 by patagonia_80 REPLIES: 10
patagonia_80's ravatar patagonia_80    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 77
Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/23/09 1:03 PM

Next week I'm going to buy clip-in pedals and shoes. I'm riding with baskets right now and I'm just not going fast enough. Also, when I got off the bike and started running after last week's Brick, my legs were speaking to me.....telling me to please buy clip-in pedals and shoes. Yeah, it was challenging.

Can anyone give me any reccomendations? I've heard that mountain bike pedals are good because you can clip in on either side. If you can tell me what your favorite (or least favorite) brand is.....that would be awesome.... thanks for any advice you can provide :)


dsgrunning's ravatar dsgrunning    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 1481
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/23/09 1:47 PM

First of all, your legs will tell you what it told you last Sat regardless of whether you have clipless or not. Don't operate under falsehood that clipless will make that feeling disappear. Will it make it better ? Most likely but you will defintely feel it whether you have clipless or not.

Clipless styles/brands/types are matters of choice and personal preference. One person will swear by one style while another person will swear by something else. You should go to a bike shop and ask if you can try out a variety of different styles to see which ones you like best. Those things are quite expensive when you factor in shoes, cleats, and clipless. You want to make a decision that would make you feel the most comfortable while riding in.

They all have their advantages and disadvantages. For example, the mountain ones that you referenced are good for mountain bikers because all that mountain bikers or road bikers for that matter do is ride. For triathletes, we have to run in the shoes and cleats that are attached to those pedals. The cleats to the mountain ones are small and hollow. This means that sometimes they accumulate dirt and mud during the run in the transition area which will make them difficult to clip on. The dirt may be more difficult to remove than another type of cleats.

This is just an example. I'm not advocating or bashing any one type or brand ... just emphasizing the fact that 1. You should evaluate the clips from a triathlete's point of view and 2. Try them out at the store if you can or see if there is someone with the same shoe size as you and try it out.

For the record I have a "Look". Only reason I have them is because they were given to me for free by a friend when I first started. I like them and many triathletes of all levels also use them so at least I know that I'm not on the fringe :)


charlie's ravatar charlie    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 61
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/23/09 2:08 PM

Keep in mind that you don't actually have to run in your cycling shoes if you do not want. There are time advantages to leaving your shoes clipped in for the entirety of the race if you are comfortable with doing so. I prefer to leave my shoes clipped in at the end of the ride and run barefoot to transition.

Like Tuan said, you should go to a store and check them all out. Sidi makes a shoe specifically for triathlon - the T2, which are ideal as you can ride without socks (lots of breathing room) and it makes your transition into running shoes that much quicker (if you do not mind not wearing socks).


ecurunr04's ravatar ecurunr04    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 31
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/23/09 2:10 PM

I would tend to steer away from a mountain bike pedal for road riding. They are a bit clunky and heavier than road pedals. If it is a two sided pedal you must have I would take a look into Speedplay pedals. They area a dual sided entry pedal specific for road biking. And like Tuan said, if you get mud in a mtn bike pedal/cleat it is really tough to get clipped in.

To be honest once you get a hang of clipping in an out it will not matter if you have a two sided pedal or not. A one sided road pedal is weighted towards the back so it always falls towards the ground when not clipped in. It will be in the same position every time when you want to clip back in. Hope this helps.

postie    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 46
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/23/09 2:46 PM

I have knee problems, and have found Speedplay road pedals to work quite well for me. I purchased a women's-specific specialized road biking shoe, and have been unhappy with them. I dislike the plastic locking fastener since it always seems to get stuck. I wish that I had spent a little extra to purchase triathlon shoes with velcro fasteners.

vatriathlete    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 685
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/25/09 9:46 PM

mtb cleats an shoes are made for dealing with mud and can clip in much easier with rocks and such in teh cleats than say raod shoes and pedals.

mtb pedals are usually 2 sided and have an open design to shed mud easier. I think the previous posters may have inadvertantly made a typo about mtb pedals not dealing with mud well, afterall mtb pedals and bikes are used in mud all the time.

vatriathlete    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 685
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/26/09 12:50 PM


silvercannonca    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 45
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/26/09 3:57 PM

My bike came with specialized clip-ins. I found them very difficult to get in and out and switched them out for Look. They have been fantastic. Easy in and out, but hold solid when I want. Hardest thing was finding shoes to go with the clips. My first pair of shoes were stolen, next bar were Sidi but I found I was having terrible hot spots -- but no returns even though I wore them twice and only on the bike so like new. In the end, I found some Nike bike shoes that are great -- but I also get blisters when I wear anything but Nike shoes for running as they tend to run narrow.

patagonia_80's ravatar patagonia_80    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 77
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/27/09 9:47 AM

Thanks for taking the time to give me great advice! I really appreciate it! :)

nopher    JOINED: 3/2/09    POSTS: 35
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 4/29/09 11:27 AM

Any recommended spots in DC to look for some clipless pedeals? I want to get the mtn bike ones. Thanks in advance for any input! Sophie

vatriathlete    JOINED: 2/28/09    POSTS: 685
RE: Taking the Plunge....Clip-in Pedals
POSTED: 5/01/09 9:43 AM

honestly goto any bicycle shop you can find, capital hills, that one in adams morgan, etc, any bike shop that sells more than tricycles or beach cruiser style bicycles should have clipless pedals in them.

if nothing else the best prices are found in either a performance bike store,,

they are not merchant partners but if you are really strapped for money they the cheapest way to go even with the shipping costs, at any given time one of those places will have mtb pedals on sale, specifically teh shimano 520, or 540 pedals, or any of the house brands, any brick and mortor place will be at least 15-20 dollars more expensive.

good luck.

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