Cooler weather is upon us and it is boot season! We have listened to you and have brought in a variety of boots that are both fashionable and warm so you will go into the coming months looking AND feeling great! When you are making that transition from the freedom of summer sandals to the cozy comfort of winter boots, here are some reminders:
Most boots are sized by whole sizes; and it is safe to guess that if you are between sizes you should go up (unless the boot has shearling that will pack down). And, there is always heel slippage with a boot -- which is good; when the heel is too tight, blisters occur. The slippage will decrease as the shank of the boot is broken in and becomes accustomed to your foot.
The biggest challenge women face in this area is making sure that taller boots have ample calf room. Since we live in a terrain where we walk more - our calves our more muscular than a city gal. So, we have talked with our vendors to try to accommodate higher elevation gals and offer some generous leg space.
On Thursday Oct. 25 and Nov. 1 – stop by the shop from 4:30 to 6:45 pm and take a look at our boot selection. We will be hosting a "Boots and Burgundy" (–or some kind of wine) and cheese gathering and you can get 20% of any one single item -- – so treat yourself!
And stay tuned -- we will have more invites for special events via our facebook page in the next few weeks!
We have just started to get in our fall styles at The Good Sole -- so here is a quick preview!
We are happy to introduce Cobb Hill. This shoe line is designed by the same group that does New Balance -- so they really know feet and comfort! The great plus about this line is it comes in widths - so it works with wide feet or feet that has bunions or other toe issues.
Clogs are a great fall style and Naot has some great colors to complete your fall wardrobe.
And, as always, Dankso has some great styles. As you can see from the pictures Dansko is offering some more heel height. But unlike other heels, Dansko has its unique fit which makes these styles perfect for work and play.
Stay tuned...we have new styles arriving weekly!
There is a huge misunderstanding in the foot world that if you wear orthotics or suffer from various foot ailments such as plantar fasciitis or metatarsalgia that you cannot wear sandals.
That’s right; many folks – especially women – are told that if they have foot problems they must wear an enclosed shoe at all times. This is neither fun nor comfortable, especially when it is warm outside.
After all, who wants to attend an outdoor event in June in shoes? Not me and I doubt you!
We are not doctors, but at The Good Sole we have the training and expertise to modify many sandals so they are both comfortable and healthy for people with common foot problems.
We start with the highest quality sandals from the best names such as Naot, Wolky, Dansko and Mephisto. Some of these great sandals offer enough support and balance that even problem feet can be comfortable right out of the box. Others come with removable footbeds that allow for custom orthotics or modifications. We can add metatarsal or scaphoid pads (also known as arch cookies) to make the sandal even more supportive.
Don Feinberg, our manager, is a pro at helping to stretch or do bunion busting on sandals or shoes so they can fit around various toes, bumps, sensitive areas, etc. Annie Stewart, our lab technician, is usually available to customize a sandal or shoe to meet the needs of your feet. And Kara (that’s me) is a Certified Pedorthist. You can call any time to schedule a free exam.
We already have a great selection and are getting more new styles every week. So let the sun shine in on your feet and be comfortable this summer!
And, even if you don’t have any foot ailments, it is worth investing in quality sandals built for comfort and support. That is the best way to ensure your feet stay healthy and beautiful for years and decades to come.
So go get a pedicure and let your feet see the light of day this summer!
It’s January – and although we haven’t had a ton of snow in Taos, we still have ice. And just walking around town requires special attention. At The Good Sole and Taos Mountain Outfitters we can fit you with YakTrax which attach to the bottom of your shoe or boot and will help -- but here are some friendly reminders for getting around on ice:
*Assume that all dark areas on pavement are ice and slippery
*Avoid shoes or boots with smooth soles. Instead, wear footwear that can provide traction such as non-slip rubber soles.
*Use special care when entering and exiting vehicles – use the vehicle for support
*Keep your hands out of your pockets. Hands in the pockets decrease your center of gravity and balance. Plus, if you do slip, you want your hands free to break the fall. A friend up in Colorado actually broke his nose in a fall because his hands were stuck in his pockets. And no he had not had a drink yet!
*If you do slip, try avoiding landing on your knees or spine. It is better to relax and try to land on your side or your butt which is usually fleshier and provides a little more cushion.
*Most importantly - what living creature handles ice better than anyone? The penguin. So, walk like a penguin. Point your feet out slightly on ice – this increases your center of gravity. It won’t be your best look, but when it comes to ice, it’s better to be safe than sexy! Plus, you can hum the “March of the Penguins” to help you move.
So take it easy during ice season so you don’t have to spend mud season with any broken bones!
When I was growing up I remember we didn’t wear suede shoes or boots until the weather got colder. And, that was always the time that the terrain became harder on footwear with more moisture and snow – which can leave stains on suede.
Many will either receive – or treat themselves – to a pair of suede boots, slippers, or shoes this season. And while we rip open the box and put on our new footwear – there are some basic care tips that will keep the suede looking as nice as the day it is received.
Be sure to spray your footwear with a stain and rain repellent before you step out the door. Check underneath your sink; you may have some and extra can from previous purchases. Be sure to spray the suede and let it dry for at least 15 minutes before you wear it outside.
The spray is inexpensive; at The Good Sole we offer Cadillac Stain and Rain Repellent that sells for $5.
I suggest repeating every 6 to 8 weeks depending on how much you wear your shoes.
However, if in between time you do get mud – or spill something on your shoe – I also have suggestions to help save the suede.
For mud, wait until it dries and with a damp cloth gentle remove the mud. And, if you spill something on your suede (coffee, wine, etc.) try to BLOT (note blot, not rub) it off with a damp cloth. Some folks use club soda to blot it off. If the item stains your suede – you can get a suede/nubuck stick and brush and try to get most of the stain removed. The stick reminds me of a typewriter eraser (that I remember my grandparents using- - not me!) and you simply try to erase the stain and then brush of the remnants.
I have a friend in Boulder who works at the Pedestrian Shops. She has a pair of pink suede Danskos that are probably 10 years old and look great thanks to the care she applies to the suede. Her rules for suede care are simple:
Every 6 weeks go rent the latest DVD with your favorite actor – I think she is on a Dennis Quaid kick at the moment. Place the DVD in the player, pour a glass of wine, and grab your suede shoes. Gently erase/ brush and protect the suede while enjoying your evening.
The weather has been terrific in Taos but let’s face it – it is November and soon we will see snow. And having the right winter boot is essential for this area.
When shopping for a winter boot keep in mind what you will be doing in the boot. Will this be a boot to get you from home, to work, to doing errands? Or, do you engage in outdoor activities that require you to shovel snow, etc.? Or, do you just need a boot to get you from your car to indoor places?
Warmth is a huge factor in a winter boot but you also need to consider other components; Is it water resistant? Does it offer a tread that will make it easy to walk? Can I use Yaktrax or other ice protection clamp-ons with it? Or do I just want a fashion statement?
Considering all this will make your choice easier when shopping.
And, one of the key things to remember is to make sure the boot fits properly. Most winter boots only come in whole sizes. If you are in-between sizes, for example 7 ½, it is generally best to go to the higher number. Winter boots are not like ski boots; they don’t need to be tight but rather offer some room so air can circulate and make your foot warmer. And heel slippage will occur until the boots are broken in and become familiar with your feet.
Many boots such as Sorel and Columbia have made their name by being tested to keep a person’s foot warm to 30 degrees below zero; however, that won’t be true if you have poor circulation or the boot doesn’t fit properly.
At The Good Sole we work to help you find the right size boot. We are more than happy to measure your foot if you wish and we believe if in doubt the person needs to try on several sizes and styles. Winter boots are an investment – but investing in keeping your feet and toes warm and comfortable is important.
Have you ever wished you could stay in your slippers all day? Of course you have, that warm fur and soft suede, why wouldn’t you? Imagine going to the store, running errands, or even hanging out with your friends, all with the feel of a slipper and the look of the hottest boot around. Sounds impossible? Its not.
We just got in our first shipment of Uggs today, and boy was I excited! Seeing all of the new styles, as well as the die hard classics, makes me want to kiss summer goodbye! Forget the sandals, and bring on the boots!
You never have to compromise between comfort and style when dealing with Uggs, there is a perfect pair for every closet! Every year I am impressed with the collection. This season my new personal favorite is the Bailey Button Triplet which is perfect for skinny jeans. I recommend buying a can of our stain and rain protector that provides water-resistance to protect the suede boot throughout the winter season. Ugg does sell its own brand of spray but we carry our own brands that provides the same protection for much less.
Another great style which we will be getting in a few weeks is the Adirondack, a top pick for the person who wants an attractive, waterproof boot that is feminine looking. This style does have a Vibram sole. As excited as I am for our Ugg arrival – we will continue to get more winter boots throughout this month until early November. I always remind people that boots tend to sell fast so if you see something you like you probably should get it now – because once the temperature drops and the first few flakes start falling –boots become scarce!
And, as it begins to get cooler and the days shorten you may think about this “slipper” feeling more often. Whether you want the timeless classic look, or something new and different, The Good Sole has what you're looking for. Comfort and style; a perfect slice of heaven.
Want strong knees when hiking season starts? Work your hamstrings now.
Sure, you could hike yourself into shape come spring- but your could hike yourself right into and injury during the process. A too-sedentary off-season can shorten and weaken your hamstrings and that means feeble knees. “ The hamstrings keep the knees safely aligned as you hike,” explains Suzie Snyder, and adventure racer and strength- and- conditioning coach based in Wallingford, Connecticut. Strong hams support your pack’s weight and help ligaments stabilize the knee over uneven terrain, especially when you’re descending with a pack. “Work those muscles, and you’ll hike downhill faster and reduce the risk of knee injuries,”Snyder says. Strengthen your hamstrings with these three exercises; for maximum benefit, do them three times per week, starting six to eight weeks before your first big trip.
Alternating Lunges How-> Standing with feet shoulder-width apart, take a large step forward, shifting your weight to your front leg while bending the rear knee and dropping the hips toward the ground. Keep your front shin vertical and your thigh parallel to the floor. Pause briefly, then step back to a standing position without dragging the front foot. Alternate with the other leg for 20 lunges total. Work up to three sets of 20 reps per leg. After two weeks, drop to three sets of 10 reps while wearing a 10-pound backpack. Add five pounds to the pack per workout until you reach 30 to 40 pounds.
Why?-> Lunges work the hamstrings and glutes, which “apply the brakes as you hike downhill,” Snyder says. Wearing a loaded pack raises your center of gravity and challenges your balance, which trains your hamstrings to steady the knees over loose rock or uneven ground.
Stability Ball Leg-Curls How-> Lie face-up on the floor with legs extended and heels on top of a stability ball. Lift your hips off the floor and pull your heels toward your butt, keeping your toes and knees pointed up. Hold your hips high and straighten your legs; do three sets of 10. When that move becomes easy, try them one-legged: Extend one leg toward the ceiling while you roll the ball toward your butt with the other.
Why?-> Each time you step down, the hamstrings contract and pull the lower leg beneath you, “like doing leg curls all the way down the mountain,” says Snyder.This exercise mimics that on-train movement to strengthen hamstrings and prevent the knee pain caused when the quads are disproportionately stronger than the muscles on the back of the leg.
Hamstring Rolls How-> Sit down on a foam roller placed just below your butt, perpendicular to the leg. Resting your body weight on the foam, use your hands and non supported leg to crab-walk your body backward, rolling over the foam from butt to knee. Reverse direction and roll from knee to butt. Repeat eight times, or until the tenderness and discomfort in your hamstrings subside. Switch legs and repeat.
Why?-> The rolling exercise relaxes and lengthens hamstrings after a tough workout, soothing fatigue and flushing lactic acid from the muscles. “If muscles do not recover from one training bout, the next session with be compromised,” says Snyder. This simple recovery move prevents cramping and lowers the risk of injury during your next training session. Get the same benefits on a multi day trip by substituting a water bottle for a foam roller to restore hamstrings’ full capacity and range of motion.