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nanny-rosy
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Author Topic: Damn you, non standard feet.  (Read 1079 times)
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Clambers
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« on: April 29, 2012, 04:54:33 AM »

Hey,
Having some problems in procuring some VFFs in the UK for my stupid feet.  Measuring a modest 5ft10 in height, I have been cursed with a pair of monster size 12s, featuring a quite stunningly gigantic pair of big toes.  I'm in the process of trying to find the right size VFFs to fit these beasts, and at 100 a go I can scarcely afford one pair in the correct size, so finding out after a couple of weeks of use that they're the wrong size isn't an option for my meagre finances.

Options for actually trying on a pair in my home town of Bristol are limited, but i've managed to find a shop that has some Bikilas in a 47, which I've tried on a couple of occasions, thereby generating my quandary:

The first time I tried the Bilkila in a 47 I was concerned that it was too big, as it was a little loose around the heel.  However when I tried them yesterday it suddenly seemed as though they might actually be a bit small.  I guess the difference might be that yesterday i'd walked up a long hill to get to the shop, so my feet had warmed and expanded moreso than the first time.

As you can imagine, the issue lies squarely with my big toes.  They fit into the toe pocket and are perfectly comfortable, but the material is tightly stretched across the toe, no room at all.  It looks as though my big toe is a good 8mm or so wider than Vibram were expecting  Roll Eyes  I've read the official text about how the longest toe should "graze the end of the toe pocket", and I *suppose* that's what is happening, in that the end of the toe is fully touching the end of the pocket, but not exerting any undue pressure on it when standing. 

I had a quick run in them for 50 yds up and down the (fairly steep) road outside the shop, and they felt great uphill, but possibly started feeling a little restrictive on the downhill slope as the toe started to naturally push the front of the shoe.  Difficult to know what to read into this as I have no clue how things are meant to feel.

Ordinarily this would be easily resolved by ordering in the next size up for a comparison test, however the 47 seems to be as big as the Bikila goes, so my options are:

1. Buy the 47s, they'll stretch a bit with a bit of use
2. Try a different model (the only other models available in Bristol seem to be the KSO and KSO trek)
3. VFFs are not for me  Cry

The shop is open again in a few hours time, and if buying the  47s is the right thing to do I sould really get in there ASAP, as these shoes are like gold dust around these parts.  The guy in the shop says that the consignment that they recieved this week was as a result of an order that they placed in *January*, so if I miss these ones I could be in for a serious wait...

All thoughts and advice will be gratefully recieved!

Cheers
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« on: April 29, 2012, 04:54:33 AM »

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Horse Rider
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« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2012, 01:25:48 PM »

You said they felt great running except downhill, but we all feel a little bit pushed up into the pockets downhill, if it's the only issue and they feel great otherwise, buy them! They do slightly stretch.
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« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2012, 02:07:58 PM »

Hi I'm in the UK and have a similar problem -- big feet.

Or have I... I've 47s in Speeds, but only because I always wear them with socks. The classics (M47) I got off eBay three weeks ago are definitely too big for me, and I'll be listing them back on there when I've got a little time. I think I'll be M46 in most models.

My greatest success has been looking for deals on Amazon. Free postage and free returns means I've tried out KSOs (M47), Trek (M47) and Speeds (M46) and returned them. Sometimes there are discounts available.
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VFF: M46: Classic, KSO x4, Trek x3, Trek LS, Treksport x2, KMDSport, EL-X, Bikila LS, Spyridon MR, Flow, Signa, Speed, Sprint (fake?), KSO EVO;
       M47: Speed, Classic (too big)
Non-VFF: 46 Merrell Tough Glove, 47 VB Synth Hiker
Clambers
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« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2012, 03:44:54 AM »

Well, things have certainly moved on since yesterday. I opted for progress over procrastination and bought the 47 Bikilas with the intention of wearing them around the house for research without spoiling them for returns.
So far in all honesty I'm none the wiser.  The only problem with the fit is the big toe, everything else is great (albeit pretty roomy in all other toe pockets).  Big toe is fully touching the end but not pressing hard.  My concern is that when I lift the toe, i can feel the toe cap and sole restricting the toe from fully lifting up. This isn't uncomfortable, but I'm conscious that this motion is exactly what'll be happening every time the big toe leaves the ground when running.
I guess this might be fine, as it surely must happen with any big toe that "grazes" the end as per the Vibram literature.  Can anyone identify with what I'm describing here? Is that a normal thing for a well fitted VFF?  Might stick some pics up later.

I'm wondering if it might be a good idea to track down one of the mythical KSO 48s in black on mail order to try... Man, this is not straightforward.
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« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2012, 03:44:54 AM »

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nowster
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« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2012, 07:34:08 AM »

Big toe is fully touching the end but not pressing hard.  My concern is that when I lift the toe, i can feel the toe cap and sole restricting the toe from fully lifting up. This isn't uncomfortable, but I'm conscious that this motion is exactly what'll be happening every time the big toe leaves the ground when running.
I think you might be correctly fitted there. They do stretch a little with wear.

Also, with the barefoot running gait, you tend not to be pushing with the toes, so there's little pressure on them. As someone else has said, once the weight has transferred off that foot, you'll be lifting it off the ground.

Walking and running are merely falling with style. Realising that gravity is your friend is half the battle.
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VFF: M46: Classic, KSO x4, Trek x3, Trek LS, Treksport x2, KMDSport, EL-X, Bikila LS, Spyridon MR, Flow, Signa, Speed, Sprint (fake?), KSO EVO;
       M47: Speed, Classic (too big)
Non-VFF: 46 Merrell Tough Glove, 47 VB Synth Hiker
Clambers
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« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2012, 09:37:28 AM »

with the barefoot running gait, you tend not to be pushing with the toes, so there's little pressure on them. As someone else has said, once the weight has transferred off that foot, you'll be lifting it off the ground.

That is a very good point.  I'll bear that in mind whilst prancing around the house this evening.  Still tempted to try some KSO 48s though, as I could then have the option of toesocks for the winter...  As long as I can be sure to find another pair of Bilika 47s easily if the KSO 48s are no good, then I guess that's the most sensible path to peace of mind...
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Clambers
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« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2012, 06:35:33 PM »

Well, a bit of haring around the house has brought me to some kind of conclusion.  I just can't shake the feeling that the Bikilas might be a tiny bit too snug in the big toebox dept, despite the fact that all other toes are echoing around their respective pockets.  I'm having a premonition of minimalist joy curtailed by a numb big toe.
I'm going to take these back to the shop, and see if I can find something in a 48 (not Classic or Sprint though) to try, maybe with a pair of toesocks just in case.  If the worst comes to the worst and I can't find any 48s, then it looks fairly easy to find another 47 Bikila at the moment, so I can always go back to that, and maybe think about stretching the big toe box like the Morton's Toe Mod.

So if anyone spots a 48 for sale, give me a shout!  I spotted a site claiming to let me preorder a Treksport in a 48 - any ideas how that might fare for pavement running?  I have no real plans for off-roading - would the lugs get on my nerves?

Cheers for all your advice so far, i'm much obliged.
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« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2012, 06:49:26 PM »

They are a bit thick for strictly road running and some people have reported that the lugs tend to come off on the road from from the contact with the hard surface of the tarmac. However I am sure some people still run with them.
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Treksport Pink
Bikila Silver/Verde,LS Purple
Flow Black
Sprint Black,Slate/Palmx2,Fuschia,Blue/Aqua
Classic Stormy Sea,Chili,Grey/Orange,Mauvex2,Lilac,Khaki,Suomy,Yellow/Grey,Sand/Dusty Blue,SW Charcoal
Alitza Grey/Rose
Spyridon LS
Stems,Lems,EvoII,Off Rd Hi,Boxing Boot,Lucy Lite,Konvinesx2
Clambers
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« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2012, 02:58:06 AM »

So not a glowing recommendation then?  Wink  I think i'll be happiest if I can find some KSOs, and I guess if the black ones are indeed tighter too that'll probably play into my er... feet  Grin
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« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2012, 06:09:27 AM »

I did a Morton's toe mod on my pair of black KSO's - just by a couple of millimetres. If it's just one toe that's causing issue and the shoes are otherwise comfortable it could be worth a try. It improved the fit for me in the toebox, but being W width KSO's they were just too narrow, so I sold them and got some M width Speeds instead.
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« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2012, 06:48:14 AM »

Something I forgot to mention - my heel really didn't naturally sit tightly at the back of the Bikilas, regardless of what I did with the strap. If I pulled my heels snugly back into the shoe then the big toe started feeling a lot better, maybe like it was just right. I wonder if that LS might help in that respect?
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