Interesting on the harder vs softer rubber and stiff sole vs soft sole. I rode freerider contact (terrible)and freeriders as my first flat pedal shoe and loved the grip at first but felt locked in if my foot was on the pedal weird and I needed to reposition. After the sole broke down to where my feet were getting tired I switched and tried the shimano gr9. Harder rubber and a stiffer sole made it easy to move my foot and after 2 rides the less grip thing wasn't one anymore.
Its true on the size I used to have an industrial machine and made a few bum bags that I wanted to ride with. My design was a bit large and as a pack rat type with a bike with no cage (process 111) it was always too floppy. It is great for the bike commute.
I have ridden e13 tires for about 4 years now and went for the dual ply "enduro" casing with a mopo front and the race in the rear. I have to say I kinda miss the edgy character of the previous design. I think since I have ridden the square shape tires for so long I am super used to them and these just miss some of the corner bite. I had a couple of near death front wheel drift moments with the new tire yesterday that gave me some pause as to weather I want to keep riding these puppies. Wild Enduros now carrying the square tire torch?
Its all about maintenance and massage in my opinion. Most of the surgeries limit your range of motion so I quickly ruled those out. Find a really good massage therapist and get a massage ball and foam roller to hit the hot spots. My experience is that the structure around the injury is causing the pain due to guarding. Strength and range of motion are your best bets imho. The first 2 years suck but them its manageable. Good luck!