On a recent ride, I turned into the parking lot of one of those stand-alone Walgreen’s drug stores that seem to have cropped up on every other corner, when something didn’t feel right. My right foot was looser than it usually is.
I stopped at the edge of the lot, used the opportunity to drink from my water bottle, and then I sat on the curb to take a look at my shoes.
The cleat on the right shoe had come loose. Not catastrophically – I could move it a little with my hand – but the constant pressure in the pedal had loosened it up. A few quick turns of the screws with my 4 mm Allen wrench, and it was solidly back in place.
I hadn’t been experiencing the same feeling on the left shoe, but decided to take a look anyway. Sure enough, I could tighten those screws about a half-turn each as well.
I do periodic checks of the bike between rides, making sure the tires are in good shape, that everything moves smoothly. I guess I’ll have to add a non-bike equipment check, too, and look at those cleats every couple of months. It could save some headaches down the road.