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It’s In Your Sole

Heels To Laces is on a mission to break through the clutter of health and fitness and make it easier to live healthier – and have a ton of fun doing it. As always, we love interaction so email us, comment, share and send your thoughts.

It’s a NEW YEAR! Let’s get on it!

If you are a new subscriber and this is your first experience joining us – giddy up! All new subscribers this week were entered into our beauty give-away raffle. If you are a winner, we will hit you up soon! Keep a look out in your email.

“Life is beautiful if we are able to look at it through the lenses of optimism, love and gratitude.” ~Liz Ferro

Each post we will present you with a truth or dare – the idea is to tackle it with gusto and make it happen. Focusing on just one change is much less daunting and more achievable, giving you the jump start you may need.

Truth: What have you done for you lately?
Like most of us, we sprinted through the holiday season and continued our celebrations well beyond the Auld Lang…then got slammed with a New Year, back to the same whirlwind grind. Have you taken any time to do you? Down time, promised daily meditation, new resolution to exercise weekly…and the list goes on.

Today is the day. Get that massage (it’s not an indulgence, it’s a self-care necessity), go to the gym, take a bath (and don’t let anyone enter!), book a night out with friends. Life is short people. Take the opportunity as it presents itself.

We don’t claim to know everything – so sometimes we have to ask the experts:

Enter Beast Mode.
The book “Girls with Sole” recently crossed our path from a well-respected friend and colleague who thought it related to our mantra. She was on-point. The author, Liz Ferro, founded Girls With Sole (Girls with Sole / Heels To Laces…yeh, it got us a little giddy) to help girls battling challenging lives and backgrounds utilize the power of fitness and self-awareness activities to reinvent themselves and unleash their inner superhero.

Liz translates that methodology to the general audience, providing tools to becoming “a badass, rock star, super version of yourself.” Her book forces you to be introspective and change your language from negative to positive. She helps people “develop and unleash their gifts into the world and take real-world steps toward becoming the fit and fierce person you want to be.”

Liz teaches us how to face fear head-on and take control of your own destiny. Oh, and as part of her journey, she ran 50 marathons, in 50 states (70 total). She is a fierce woman who has made it her mission to carve her influence into the world and save and inspire others. Read more about Liz & her book. It will change you.

Intermittent fasting. This idea took launch as the latest diet craze, however it really is more of a lifestyle approach. Concept: eat within a specific time period, and fast the rest of the day. It’s not necessarily about what you eat (although we are all about healthy food choices), but when you eat.  There are several popular trends:

  • fasting for 16 hours, eating within the remaining 8 hours (ie. 1 pm – 9pm only)
  • fasting for 24 hours once or twice a week
  • strictly reducing your calorie intake for 2 non-consecutive days, then eat normally for the remaining days of the week.

The 16/8 is a one of the more popular methods – which can be modified to a shorter fasting period like 15/9 (eating from 11 – 8) or 14/10.

What’s the premise? Intermittent fasting is said to have some remarkable health benefits including: weight loss, insulin resistance, HGH increases, cellular repair, reduction of inflammation, keeping your heart & brain healthy, anti-aging benefits and being mindful of what you eat.

This is not a license to go hog-wild and eat anything & everything within the limited time frame, but it does allow you to eat more freely, as long as your choices continue to be healthy (avoiding processed foods and high sugars).

Sometimes, you just gotta have it.

Cha-Cha-Cha Chia
These little power seeds pack quite a punch. Rich in protein, omega 3’s, beneficial antioxidants, fiber and magnesium (3 tbsp. serving has 15x more magnesium than broccoli, 30% more antioxidants than blueberries and 2x more potassium than bananas) they are truly a super-food. Sprinkle ’em on your yogurt, cereal, oatmeal, in your smoothie, or use them as an egg replacement in baking (mix 1 tablespoon of chia seeds with 3 tablespoons of water per egg required; Let sit for 10 – 15 minutes until the mixture becomes gel-like).

Pure Satisfaction
We scour the web for the best products at the best prices. Man, did we score. If you are a supplement junkie like us (or just love your vitamins), we found you a new home.  This site offers certified quality products, including nutritional supplements, organic foods, beauty, sports nutrition, and pet products. Best prices on the planet, free shipping, free returns, same-day shipping, rewards for purchases, incentives, constant discounts & specials and outstanding customer service. Yep, quality customer service still exists. And, we got you $5 off your first order of $50. p.s. that powerhouse Mega Food Acute Defense we swear on and yell about from the rooftops …yep, they got it. Stock on up (cause now everyone knows about it).

Lovin’ Me Some Lashes
Yes, we’ve tried the lash growth products…we liked them, we put in our time…but lately, we’ve tossed them due to this ridiculous lash extension mascara we discovered. One product, one amazing outcome.

All of our recipes will always be quick, healthy, easy, gluten-free, grain-free, sugar-free, mostly dairy-free, SCD legal and Paleo friendly. And yes, all sorts of deliciousness.

Apple treats aren’t just for Thanksgiving. This healthy adaption of the beloved apple crisp is the easiest you will ever make.

Crispy Apple Crumb

  • 6-10 apples (based on your pie dish) / variety of your choice (Honey Crisp is delish)
  • 2 tablespoons butter or ghee
  • Cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1.5 cups almond flour
  • 2/3 cups butter or ghee, soft or slightly melted

– Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
– Peel and slice the apples and scatter them into your pie dish
– Generously sprinkle cinnamon all over the apples then drizzle about 2 tablespoons of honey on top – mix together until well blended
– Cut thin slices of butter and spread them sporadically throughout the apple mixture
– In a separate bowl, mix together the almond flour, softened butter, about 1/3  cup honey until it gets a little clumpy (like crumbs)
– Once well mixed, sprinkle evenly over the apples until they are covered with topping
– Bake for about 45 minutes (if you like softer apples, leave in 5-10 min extra);  If the top starts to brown or burn, cover with parchment paper

Serve hot.

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Disclosure: some product recommendations are affiliate sites, which simply means we get a small compensation from the companies that sell the products we endorse. We will never endorse a product we do not personally use or love. Opinions expressed are solely those of Heels To Laces.
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The Italian Experiment

italiaThis April, we spent 10 days in Italy. Best. Trip. Ever. And we ate. Everything. Cheeses, oil soaked veggies, gelato, pizza, bread, pasta…All of it. The entire week, I did not have one stomach ache (typically I average 1-2/day) and I lost weight. Truth spoken people.

Aside from moving to Italy, there is a lesson in this – and it’s two-fold.

  1. Pure, unprocessed fresh food is good for your body. Period.
  2. Fat is good.

1st point – Italians barely use a refrigerator and do not load their pantries with snacks. Most of them use the college-sized dorm room versions our kids take to school. Everything is bought and made fresh daily. They do not manufacture or consume processed foods.

Now let’s focus on the 2nd point. As I’ve written about before, we have been taught to be afraid of fat and told “fat will make you fat”. I am here, as a witness, to tell you… that is a myth.

More and more we are learning that higher fat diets help balance hormones, make vitamins (A,D,E,K) more absorbable, promote skin, hair, cardiovascular & brain health, prevent diabetes and… help you lose weight. All calories are not created equal. That is a farce. But there is more to it. Some pure logic – some scientific.

The fat you will find in a frappuccino or a milkshake (kinda the same thing), in a processed protein bar, in frozen dinners, in cookies or even in over-the-counter cheese is not the fat I am referring to. These processed fats are not pure, fresh or organic. They are simply that – processed. And your body does not know what to do with them – so the chemicals are converted to fat in your body.

Enter the scientific: The hormonal effect of food is a much bigger part of the equation and is the most important factor when it comes to fat loss. Namely, insulin (the fat-storage hormone, not fat-releasing). According to Jonny Bowden, PhD, CNS – author of Smart Fat: Eat More Fat, Lose More Weight. Get Healthy Now, “the American high-carb, low-fat diet…causes a lot of insulin to be released. When insulin is high, the fat cells lock their doors and won’t release their goodies…and fat can’t be burned for fuel.”

Here’s the kicker. Carbs and protein effect insulin levels. Fat? Not-at-all. And it produces more energy per gram than any other food group. And this all works when you eat “smart fats.”

Smart fats include:

Extra virgin olive oil (hello, Italia)
Fish oil
Wild salmon
Coconut, palm & nut oils
Dark chocolate (Italia, there you are again)
Free range, organic eggs
Fats from grass-fed organic meats

Toxic fats include:

Factory farmed meat on a grain-fed diet
Man-made processed fats and foods
Processed omega 6 veggie oils (corn, soybean, canola)
Fats damaged in cooking (see previous blog: Best Oils To Cook With)

So, the high-fat, high-fiber, high flavor, moderate protein-rich foods consumed in Italy proved to be the winners.

Try it. See how you feel and if you notice a difference. And always remember to source your fruits, veggies and proteins organically as much as possible.

To leave a comment on this article or any other blog entry, please fill in the “Leave a Comment” box under each blog entry on our site: Heels to Laces.



  • Sonja Gamgort

    A+ post! Should we skip the store bought packaged pasta then? Would love to look deeper at the case for eating grass fed meats versus grain fed!

    • Debra

      Organic fresh pasta is your best option. Definitely avoid grain fed meats if possible.

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When Things Get Itchy

You’ve got that New Year’s itch. “This year is going to be different.”drunkwaffles-300x300

As suspected, the most common new year’s resolution is to “lose weight.” According to Newsweek, there is a 12.1% hike in new gym memberships sold in January. “There are 54 million people in the U.S.—approximately 17 percent of the population—who are members of some type of gym or fitness center. A disproportionate number of them join shortly after the guilt of a gluttonous December sets in.”

Aisling Pigott, a spokeswoman for the British Dietetic Association, says many people allow themselves to binge over Christmas on the promise that they will fast in the new year. Unsurprisingly, this is not the best way to start, she says. “People need to think about moderation all the time. Weight loss involves adjusting lifestyle, diet and calorie intake, whilst overcoming the psychological barriers too.”

When that new year hits, so does the sinking feeling “I gotta do this now”. The idea of getting healthy can be overwhelming and is mostly psychological. The language we tend to use is “I’ll never be able to eat that again” … it becomes an all or nothing. Which just sets you up for failure.

It’s important to not see food as an enemy – but more of a method of fuel – a way to keep your body healthy and in optimal form. Rather than making eating a stressful experience, try to make it an enjoyable part of your day.

Make small adjustments – not trying to do everything at once. Looking for that quick-fix 10 pound unsustainable weight-loss is not realistic. Diet pills and shakes will not get you where you want to be. Remove yourself from the scale, stop over-thinking what you are ingesting and eliminate your fear of food.

Some tools to use:

  • Stop thinking about food 24/7 – make a list of healthy food choices you can pick from for each meal – takes out the guess work.
  • Know your trigger foods – what makes you feel awful after you eat it and only crave more? Remove those from your diet.
  • Don’t eat in front of the TV – it sabotage. If you must – dish out one serving and don’t return for more.
  • Try to stop eating at least 2 hours before you go to bed…you will feel so much lighter in the morning.
  • Add a probiotic to your daily routine…it works miracles in balancing out your gut and building your immune system.
  • Drink water. Chug a glass first thing in the morning to start your day flushing out your system.
  • Try to eat a salad everyday. Easy on the toppings, less on the dressings.
  • Cut out the processed foods and eat more non-GMO and organic.
  • Cut sugar from your diet – this alone will create a huge difference in bloating and energy levels.
  • Add more exercise – if you are a beginner, start small and build up.

You have to make each small commitment realistic and achievable. Always remember – it’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle.

And on the weekend, have that burger, sans fries. Just keep your daily routine in check. And, Happy New Year.

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