Don’t call it a foot fetish, but Fizik wants you to love how your feet feel in your shoes, even if you aren’t using Fizik shoes. That’s why they have made the Fizik 3-D Flex Moldable Insoles available as an aftermarket product.
Since Fizik shares this passion with one of the foremost OEM producer of athletic insoles, Sidas, the two companies partnered to create Fizik’s cycling-specific heat moldable insoles. Focused on an ecologically efficient way to produce the insoles, they have made sure to use either recycled or recyclable materials. The material used at the heel is called Transflux C, which provides a reinforcement at the heel for firm support that acts as ground zero in the aligning the body properly. In the metatarsal region of the foot, a low rebound Ortholite foam is used to provide the necessary cushioning protection from the vibrations and forces that can be felt through the pedal. Though the Ortholite portion of the insole is not susceptible to the flash moldability of the sole, it will conform to your foot’s shape over time, while still providing you with much needed support.
In between the heel and ball of the foot, Fizik has the Podiaflex N which is the main part that can be molded to your foot, in particular your instep. Even though the name doesn’t really sound like it, Podiaflex N is a sustainable material made up of polyester resin, EVA, and wheat middlings. That’s right, wheat middlings.
The material can be thermo-formed to your foot using the Sidas Flashfit system. This will need to be accomplished at your local Fizik dealer, but it will only take about ten minutes, which is a huge improvement over most heat moldable insoles. That’s because the Flashfit technology heats the insole within two minutes to be warm enough that all you will need to do is press your foot onto the pad for a couple more minutes in order for it to mold to your unique foot shape.
There are two ways to mold them at home. The first is to simply pull out your old insoles, install these, and ride. You may need to trim the insoles a bit to make them fit. Use the old insoles as a guide, taking care to only shorten around the toes, not the heels. As you ride, your body heat will soften the insoles and they’ll slowly mold to your feet.
The second way is to heat mold them at home. This is a bit more complicated, but can really make a difference for those with arches that are sufficiently high they do not contact the arch area on the insoles. Heat your oven to 180-degrees Fahrenheit. Make sure to have a chair next to the oven and socks on your feet. Put one insole in for 30 seconds. Then pull it out and quickly place it on the floor and your foot on top of the insole, and your body weight on top of your foot. If your arch is high, reach down and use your hands to lift the arch against your foot. Hold for five minutes. Move on to the second insole. If you want the insoles to set faster, you can put the cooling insoles into the freezer for ten minutes. This process can be done up to three times in total.
If you have suffered through centuries with the thin soles that are usually sold with cycling shoes, then you will want to do yourself a favor and hook your tootsies up with the type of support that will be the first step into getting your position perfected on the bike.