General Question

melanie81's avatar

Why do my middle toes go numb when I work out?

Asked by melanie81 (792points) February 21st, 2009

…specifically the middle toes on my LEFT foot?! Right foot is usually fine.

I did just buy a pair of new gym shoes (New Balance 1063’s, with a roomier toe box than the other four pairs I tried and returned), and had them fitted at a great local athletic store. They tested out the toe room and said it was perfect. I had the same problem with my previous shoes. I really only notice the numbness after about 20–25 minutes of working out, and it only bothers me when I’m on the elliptical, jumping around in Kickboxing class, or running outside (not on the treadmill). Any thoughts?

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5 Answers

gailcalled's avatar

Usually numbness is caused by lack of blood supply. Maybe you need custom orthotics.

Do you elevate the treadmill or run on the level? Are your feet two different sizes? Have you tried adjusting the tension when you lace?

melanie81's avatar

@gailcalled Yeah, that’s what I’m thinking…some custom insoles. I actually don’t have any trouble with it on the treadmill for some reason…BUT when I run outside – yes – it’s very hilly. I do intervals with the elliptical, and I do notice it more when the incline is higher.

Now that you mention it, my feet might very well be two different sizes. Any idea how to know for sure? Should I go to a podiatrist?

gailcalled's avatar

Often one’s feet are not a whole size different; one is just a tad bigger or smaller. Stand in your bare feet on a piece of brown paper (mutilate a shopping bag) and have a friend or family member trace outlines w. a pen. Then you can get a general idea.

I wear cheap plastic heel cups in all my shoes for plantar fascitis, but I buy them at CVS. I don’t know who makes custom orthotics; your PE instructor or Kickboxing teacher will probably know.

kwhull's avatar

I have some custom orthotics. They are not very comfortable & were very expensive. I have found that the ones you can get at a pharmacy (or Wal-mart) are much cheaper & seem to do a much better job.

gailcalled's avatar

Here’s a very useful catalog with shoes and all kinds of feet gadgets; Footsmart

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