Cold feet

I’m riding my trainer in a new environment: an unheated garage, with temperatures around -6 degrees C outside. It’s fine, really, except for my feet. They are like ice blocks when I come in from a ride.

Looking for advice from those who have been here before.

Wool socks? A small heater aimed towards your feet?

Booties over your shoes, like you would outdoors. Make sure your fan isn’t blowing on your feet.

Neoprene socks over a thin pair of summer socks.

2 pairs of socks, thin ones first with thicker ones over the top, the same as you do with gloves when riding in the winter outside

I put wool socks over my shoes with a hole cut in the bottom for my cleats.

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Merino wool socks FTW

Booties because of the fan, or turn down the fan?

I would try two pairs of socks, one of them wool - you an also try covers over your shoes.

OK, it’s -2 degrees F and the trainer is in the unheated garage.
Maybe it’s colder or I’m getting older but my wool socks didn’t cut it for a 2 1/2 hr zone 2 ride.

I switched to my work boots and platform pedals and my feet were very happy.

Make sure your shoes actually fit you and aren’t on too tight. If you shoes are too tight then putting on more/thicker socks may make the problem even worse. I’ve had problems with cold/numb feet which get worse in cold weather, I have mostly solved it by getting new cycling shoes (wider ones) and not putting them on that tightly. I find if you are have boa dials (like I have) then it is very easy to really clamp them on.


Alaska cyclist… road, mountain, fat. You’ll need boots a size or two up; either clip-in or platform. If endurance training ~Z2, then platform is fine. Two pairs of socks as described above. Annoying part about larger shoes/boots is the loss of efficiency when your foot moves inside them, but even a small air space is good insulation. Another option is to get off the bike and run in place every so often (fat bikers are used to this). Next level is hand warmers inside the boot. I use painter’s tape to secure them to the top of my toes. Toe warmers don’t seem to put out enough heat.

Heated socks would work too. They are expensive and seem unreliable for winter endurance rides, but would be fine indoors.

Maybe some hot embrocation? Mad Alchemy is a US-based brand.

I also would look into the possibility your shoes are cutting off blood flow across the instep. If your shoes have a buckle / Boa knob / knotted laces right across the top of the instep - these can put pressure on the blood vessels that run along that area.

Neoprene covers over your shoes. Maybe a space heater directed at your cranks?

the old school british method was to just cut up a trash bag and line your socks. but there are different kinds of overshoes out there now, like the oversock, overshoes, velotoze, etc. less annoying to size correctly and put on and take off are toe warmers, since they just slide over the cleat and not the heel also

Thanks for all of the suggestions. Probably the best advice is to wear boots and use platforms, but I’m not ready to go there yet. I tried double socks, but my feet are wide, and double socks in these shoes actually cut off circulation, making things worse. I switched to wool socks and added toe warmers outside the shoes. The unusually cold temperatures return to normal (above 4 degrees C) on Sunday, and the sub-zero temperatures end tomorrow. So, this particular misery ends soon!

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