New Balance 1123MC – For All of Us, Not Just for the Serious Runner

Given that I have assorted foot problems, I always look for athletic-styled shoes that provide exceptional support for whatever activity I might attempt. Most of the time for me, that’s just walking. I particularly needed a reliable shoe for all the walking I knew I’d do on my last vacation, and went back to my favorite brand of athletic shoes: New Balance. I have yet to go wrong with this brand, it has everything I need. I was intrigued by the 1123MC, even though it’s technically a running shoe, but it ended up being a great shoe for me! Here’s why:

This shoe is designed as a high-mileage trainer for runners who require maximum motion control and stability. While I am not a runner, I definitely need the stability. My right foot is prone to stress fractures, so having the extra stability and support is very helpful. This shoe contains Abzorb SBS, which is an engineered foam that provides outstanding shock absorption in the heel and forefoot. For enhanced stability, there is a rollbar that controls pronation and supination.

This shoe also contains the usual outstanding features found in all New Balance shoes, including a wide, high toe box to allow your toes room to move, exceptional durability, lightweight comfort and support, and mesh in the upper to help keep your feet cool. The 1123MC got me through Europe, and it gets me all through my neighborhood on my daily walks. I feel good about choosing a shoe that provides all the stability I need to avoid reinjuring my foot.

Runners tell me that this is a superb shoe for over and under pronators. Avoiding repetitive stress injuries is key to a successful athletic shoe, and the 1123MC provides as much stability and support as you can get in a running shoe.

Even Diabetics can feel good about wearing this shoe given its outstanding support properties and roomy toe box. It’s even rated under Medicare/HPCS code A5500 as a bona-fide Diabetic Shoe. Available for both men and women, it’s a great shoe for everyone!

Don’t be intimidated by a shoe that’s advertised as “a high mileage trainer” if you’re not a runner. The New Balance 1123MC is a fabulous shoe for all of us.

In Praise of the UGG Bailey Button!

Cooler weather has arrived, and I’ve been anxious to get a pair of boots. Unfortunately, sometimes boots don’t fit me around the ankle or the calf. Leave it to UGG Australia to have the perfect boot for those of us who have more of a challenging fit: the Bailey Button!

The Bailey Button has all of the amazing features found in all UGG boots. In particular, you can’t go wrong with the genuine twinface sheepskin. It’s of the highest quality, and naturally wicks away moisture to help keep your feet dry and cozy. The EVA sole is light, flexible, and durable. It’s a phenomenal boot for the cool weather. But what makes this boot perfect for me is the one-button closure design. It’s easy for me to slip on and off, and fits my calves and ankles beautifully.

I also love the versatility of this boot; you can wear the shaft up or cuff it down for two very different looks. It looks great with leggings or skinny jeans, and you have the option of tucking in slacks or wearing them over the top of the boot.

The UGG Bailey Button is available in Grey, Chocolate, Chestnut, Black,  Jester Red, Cobalt Blue, and Sand.  But that’s not all; if you love a little glitz in your life, check out the Bailey Bling. Yes, you can have your UGG boots with some glamour.  Available in Grey or Black, the Bailey Bling is just like the Bailey Button but with a beautiful Swarovski crystal instead of the wooden button.  This is a limited-production boot, so be sure to get yours before they’re sold out!

A Great Gift for the Holidays: Four Seasons Full Cedar Shine Box

My dad had a shoe shine box that he used to take care of all his dress shoes. Granted, he wore his dress shots a lot, since he wore suits to work every day. Being the frugal guy he was, Dad believed that he needed to get as much mileage out of his shoes as he could. I have many happy memories of helping my dad shine his shoes on Saturday mornings, and lo-and-behold Footwear etc. now carries a very similar shoe shine box from Four Seasons!

The Four Seasons Full Cedar Shine Box is a phenomenal gift for your favorite shoe connoisseur. The cedar box not only smells great (perfect to keep in your closet), it holds all your essential shoe shine accessories. The box comes with a wood and horsehair shine brush, 2 wood and horsehair shine daubers for applying shoe polish, a can of black and a can of neutral-colored shoe polish, and a shine cloth. The top of the box has a slant board on which you can work on your shoes with full accessibility and ease.

This beautiful and practical shine box is an elegant gift for anyone who loves to take care of shoes. Make those investments last by taking care of your shoes! Keep your shoe shine materials contained and accessible in the Four Seasons Full Cedar Shine Box. Maybe you can create some happy memories with your family too!

As Seen on “Oprah’s Favorite Things”: The UGG Classic Cardy!

I love seeing what Oprah comes up with for her list of her favorite things. Sometimes there are some really interesting items there that I wouldn’t necessarily have found otherwise. But one item on her list I’m already very familiar with, and I think just as highly of it as she does: the UGG Classic Cardy. It’s like a sheepskin cardigan sweater for your feet!

The versatility of this boot is fantastic. Your feet stay really warm and cozy because of the soft, sheepskin insole.  You can also get a variety of looks by changing what you do with the shaft of the boot. Want to wear it with skinny jeans or leggings? Button the boot all the way up! Want a casual look? Scrunch the shaft down a bit. Want to wear it under slacks? Fold the shaft down.  Your look can change with your mood, your wardrobe, or the weather!

This is also a nice boot for those of us with thicker calves. The heathered merino wool gives so that your legs don’t have to feel constricted. I also particularly love the way they look and feel when they are folded down. It really does seem like I’ve got a comfy sweater on my feet; just what I crave during the cold weather.

Footwear etc. has the UGG Classic Cardy available in both gray and black. I can easily see both of those in my wardrobe!

UGG boots are perfect as holiday gifts. You’re giving a gift of warmth and cozy comfort to your loved ones. Oprah would never steer us wrong, check out the UGG Classic Cardy from UGG Australia. It’s an easy addition to your holiday list that everyone will love.

 

Plantar Fasciitis and Neuropathy – What Do You Wear if You Have Both?

I received an interesting phone call from a customer a few days ago. Her situation was particularly interesting because she has both Plantar Fasciitis as well as Neuropathy. She has worn MBT shoes for several years, and it greatly helped her Plantar Fasciitis. She was actually looking for a new boot that she could wear in sloppy weather but was concerned about how her MBTs would hold up in snow.

This set off all sorts of red flags in my head, for a variety of reasons:

1)      MBTs are not designed for people with neuropathy. When you have sensory loss in your feet, your balance is adversely affected. Wearing a shoe that provides natural instability creates a huge risk of you falling. As a result, MBT does not recommend its shoes for people with neuropathy.

2)      MBT shoes, even the GTX models, are really not designed for tromping around in the snow. Yes, they are waterproof, but they do not provide the level of traction that a bona-fide snow boot does. So yes, you can wear your MBT shoes out in sloppy weather, but I’d stick to regular snow boots if you’ve got any level of accumulation on the ground.

3)      Neuropathy sufferers really need stable shoes. Regardless of what caused the Neuropathy, those folks should look for the same types of shoes as those folks with Diabetes. Generally, you should look for: a MILD rocker sole (to help propel you forward) but with a stable heel, and a high, wide toe box so that your toes won’t rub against the shoe. Any shoe with a lot of support is also excellent. Look for shoes that are soft and with cushioning if possible. It’s also helpful to find a shoe that can accommodate custom orthotics, just in case.

Generally, any shoe that is rated HPCPS (Healthcare Common Procedure Coding System) A5500 compliant is acceptable for Diabetics under Medicare and Medicaid.  These are fine choices for people with Neuropathy and Plantar Fasciitis as well due to their excellent supportive properties.

Finding shoes that help both of these medical conditions can be a challenge, but Footwear etc. carries a bunch of shoes that are worth considering.

Drew Shoes are specifically designed for Diabetics, but also have many of the supportive properties needed for those with Plantar Fasciitis. Available for men and women, they come in a wide variety of styles.

Finding slippers for Plantar Fasciitis as well as Neuropathy is a little tricky. While they are not specifically rated for Diabetics, the Orthaheel slippers are definite possibilities. I would suggest you try them on and see if you have enough toe space for these to work for Neuropathy patients. They definitely have good supportive properties and can help Plantar Fasciitis. Qwaruba makes some front and side wrap slippers that are definitely gentle for your feet, although they are not particularly supportive. If you’re not going to do a lot of walking, these could be beneficial.

New Balance makes some great athletic shoes that address both of these issues.  I would particularly look at the models that have the HPCPS A5500 rating. I particularly like the New Balance MW927BK walking shoe (and the corresponding WW927BK for women). It’s very stable, has a roll bar for motion control, is lightweight, and has great cushioning and support. This is a great all-around shoe.

Don’t assume that the products needed to alleviate Plantar Fasciitis and Neuropathy symptoms are mutually exclusive. There are a variety of shoes out there that can be beneficial. Try different types of shoes to see what works best for you!