The triathlon training blog of Phil Barnes

Gear Review: Time MXT Cycling Shoes

Short Version

Best $90 spent on gear

Longer Version

This is my second year of (what I call) "Real" training. At the end of March, I bought my first pair of cycling shoes: Time MXT.

These are actually "mountain bike" shoes. I almost bought the "road" version (RXT I think) ... but changed my mind at the last minute. I wanted one pair of shoes for commuting, leisure riding, training and racing (looking back, that's asking a lot; but these shoes delivered). The added benefit of the mountain bike model was that the sole would be easier to walk around in. The road shoe (as most do) had a smooth flat surface on the bottom, which is fine for biking - but forget about walking around in. I've seen people litterally go sliding into T2 after dismounting their bike in road shoes. The sole of the MXT model has a tread on it that makes walking easy (it also has 2 removable studs at the toes - which would probably be great in the mud, but I didn't install - or need - them).

Analysis - this being my first pair of cycling shoes, I had no idea what to expect. A knowledgeable friend of mine suggested, the stiffness of the sole and the ability to tighten them would be success measurements.

After 5 months of testing, including 1600km of commuting, 2 Olympic Tris, 1 Sprint Tri, 17 Sprint Duathlons and 1000+km of hard training, here are my findings.

Sole Stability: Hard and durable, no problem here.

Straps: 3 straps, can get tight enough without any problem - the straps appear a tad flimsy - but they've never failed me. Side note on 3 straps: Most "Tri-shoes" have a single strap to make for fast transitions. 3 straps has NEVER been an issue for me. I usually leave the bottom 2 done up, and can slide in and out with no problem, and still tighten the top strap properly.

Stitching: No loose threads anywhere -- after a good season.

Venting: Excellent. I was pleasantly suprised here. To be honest, they're starting to get a little cool for riding in the Fall.

Insole: My feet generally stink. My shoes generally stink. These shoes do smell now.. not terrible, but it took a lot of effort and a lot of riding in the rain to get them to smell. So overall, I'm impressed. In addition, the insole has kept firm always stays in place when I take my feet out.

Cleat Location: Excellent - I've always felt comfortable. On top of that, the screws that hold the cleats have never come loose.

Styling: They don't look cheap. The big TIME logo makes you feel like a pro. Feel like a pro = ride like a pro.

Comfort: Very comfortable. I've worn these barefoot, with cycling shoes, with sport socks, dress socks and wool socks. I've always felt comfortable, I've never gotten a blister. The heal is soft, yet firm. I've walked my kids to and from school in them with little problem.

Durability: I think I've punished them enough, and they still look like they could handle at least 2 more years. I had a nasty wipe out early in the season, and I scratched and scraped the "leatherette" but it hasn't frayed or deteriorated. I've ridden in through rain, and had them totally soaked - no problem (the straps do get a bit twisted when they dry out, but they settle down after the next ride)

Bottom Line: Great Shoes.

Note to equipment manufacturers: I'd be more than happy to test and review your equipment. Send me an email. ....are you listening Cervélo??? ...Dual 10 needs an honest "middle-of the pack" review????