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There are loads of questions on here about cycling shoes for wide feet, but most of the links are years old and broken, and most of them are suggestion for cycling specific shoes. I've all but given up on using any sort of proper cycling shoes, and am seeking tried and true alternatives. I wear a US 13 (47-48 EU) on what one blogger generously described as "challenging" feet. Extra wide, flat feet with plantar fasciitis, Tailor's bunions, the start of a regular bunion, etc.

I've accepted my foot fate and ride on wide touring pedals with either power grips or oldschool metal cages. But I'm still in need of a stiffer shoe. On my first long-distance tour a few years ago I tried out several different insoles with my basic running shoes. I settled on a stiff insole designed for ski/snowboard boots. Recently getting back into riding after a long hiatus during grad school, the stiff insole still works alright for shorter rides, but I get toe numbness/neuropathy after about an hour. Longer ride times (3-5 hours) aggrivate my fasciitis and give me hot-spots galore. I'm thinking that there has to be something with a more rigid sole that might help me out.

I'm curious what solutions other riders with "challenging" feet have settled on. Is there a specific type of shoe (other than workboots) that is known for having rigid-ish soles? Don't have to be cycling specific, but if you've tried them out one longer rides, that's a big plus.

  • Have you tried any of the shoes (or brands/lines) mentioned in the bikeradar article you’ve linked? With cycling shoes it’s generally okay to have a bit of space in the front, so you could pick a size larger if you need even more room. – Michael Jul 22 at 16:33
  • I read up on all of them, and the only one that seem close are some of the Lake extra-wides. I know it's trendy to spend all of one's money on cycling, but $450 for shoes that I can't even try on first is a little outside my budget right now. Hence why I'm more interested in alternatives to proper cycling shoes. – MikeyC Jul 22 at 19:17
  • Hiking boots could be worth a look. Unfortunately as soles get stiffer weight goes up. – mattnz Jul 22 at 20:18
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There have been related questions (1, 2) before. You might want to refer to those threads for ideas.

What I suggested in a previous thread was custom cycling shoes, which are very expensive, but should fit perfectly. There are a few companies that make these.

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