Running Tips: Setting Goals is Key

Create mini goals for yourself when running and see how fast they add up to big goals

I’m a goal-oriented person. In every aspect of my life, I set goals. I have goals for my job, goals for my finances and goals for my writing career. I even set goals for my love life (get through a week without calling him…. cancel one date a month just to keep him on his toes…...), and goals for a host of other stuff.

So, it was a bit surprising that, when I first started running, I didn’t set goals. Partially, because I was concentrating so much on buying the running shoes, the shorts, the running bra etc., I didn’t think about what I was going to do when I actually started running. Then, once I got outside and set off, it suddenly struck me. “No goals! What the heck am I doing this for?” That’s when I decided setting running goals was important. Now, if I was to give a running tip to a beginning runner, setting goals for yourself is one of the most important I think. But where do you start? What running goals should be your first?

I started out really simply. There’s no point deciding your first goal is to run a marathon. After a week of training, you’ll be so frustrated, the idea of a marathon will go out the window along with your running. You’ll probably hang up your running bra, shove your running shoes in a closet and never run again. So, for your first running goal, make it simple.

When I started running, I made the simplest running goal I possible could. I started by deciding my goal was to get to the end of the block. Once I got there, I kept on going, and now my goal was to the get to the red car with the dented bumper. At the red car, I aimed for the tree at the end of the street and on and on. As I kept doing this, I discovered every day I began to run further and further. It was easy to get to the end of the block and, surprise, I wasn’t tired. The next goal of the red car was even easier. By this time, my body was loosened up, I was breathing well and my mini goals were so easy to achieve, I looked forward to making the next one.

Over the next few months, I continued to do this until, one day, I decided to measure how far I was running. I got in my car and hit the odometer (that little clock thingy that measures how far the car goes) and off I drove. Imagine my surprise when I drove to the end of all my mini goals and realized I was running 10 miles a day. Not bad for quick runs to the end of the block, the post office and the crack in the sidewalk that looks like a boomerang. All added up, they created a run for me that was far beyond what I thought I could do.

So, my first running tip to you is this. Think small, then create large. Make mini goal after mini goal and, before long, you’ll be running that marathon – one block at a time.

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History of Shoes: Loafers

Learn how loafers developed from the Native American mocassin shoe design.

Many styles of modern footwear evolved from ancient or primitive footwear designs. The loafer, for example, which has been a popular casual-dress shoe since the 1930s, actually evolved from the Native American shoe called the moccasin. The moccasin was popular with many tribes in the United States because it allowed the wearer to feel the texture of the ground while at the same time protecting their feet from sharp or coarse terrain, as well as from extremely hot or cold ground temperatures. The word “moccasin” was derived from the Algonquian word makasin, which simply means, shoe made from deer skin.

The Birth of the Loafer
While the design of the modern loafer is modeled after the Native American moccasin, the first loafers were actually based on pictures published in 1932 or 1933 in Esquire of a Norwegian slip-on shoe worn by a dairy farmer. These pictures inspired the Spaulding family, who had ties to the leather and lumber industry, to create a slip-on shoe called a “Pony.” By 1934 a bootmaker from Maine named John R. Bass modified the slip-on design to include a strap that crossed the vamp and that was capable of holding a coin. This was the birth of the Penny Loafer. However, instead of a penny, a dime was usually carried in the woman’s loafer so that she could call home if her date got too fresh.

The Fashion of Loafers

Loafers were such a versatile and comfortable shoe that they were worn by both sexes as both a casual and a dress shoe. Women’s loafer styles tended to revolve around the basic penny loafer design, however, tassel-topped loafers also were fashionable for women. When women wore loafers they were usually paired with knee socks, especially during the 1950s and ’60s.

Men tended to wear tassel-topped loafers instead of penny loafers. College men during the ’60s and ’70s tended to wear loafers without socks, especially when tramping on campus, when going out dancing or just wearing them with a pair of jeans. The tassel-top loafer eventually became a fashion symbol for the legal profession when they became a staple for lawyers’ wardrobes. In this case, a dark dress sock was paired with the loafer.

Don't Fear the Ballet Shoe!

One of the hot shoe styles for women today is the ballet flat. But, like most popular shoe styles, it is hardly a new invention. Rather,the modern ballet flat has evolved both out of the dance shoe it is named after, and the women’s slippers that have been fashionable periodically throughout history.

The ballet flat takes its name from ballet, of course. The modern shoe can be described either as a more structured version of a traditional ballet shoe or a less structured and more flexible version of the pointe shoe, but constructed without the toe-box that allows dancers to elevate themselves on the very tips of their toes. There are also ballet shoes with heels known as character shoes as well as soft slippers with slight heels worn by dance teachers for comfort. Ballet flats are named as they are to differentiate themselves from these two types of ballet shoes to which they are unrelated.

While today we think of ballet as a performance art, ballet steps were once a part of social dancing. In the Georgian and Regency eras (1795 – 1825) social dancing involved many vigorous ballet steps and everyone well-positioned in society sought out dancing masters to help them perfect their form and technique. At this time, the correct shoe for a formal ball was
not today’s high heel (which was also popular in earlier eras), but a beautifully adorned dance slipper, usually made out of leather. This was the precursor to the ballet flat.

These slippers weren’t just for women, but men as well, and there are a number of Regency-period illustrations showing a man on his way to a formal event with his dance shoes tucked into his back pocket.

Today’s structured ballet flats acknowledge the active lifestyle of women while also preserving the delicacy, dance allusions and comfort of the dance shoe from which it evolved. Synthetic materials, cloth and leather are all common materials used in ballet flats. Today’s ballet flats are defined by their almost non-existent heel and rounded toe. The shoes range from studier replications of ballet slippers (right down to a soft pink or peach
color and the tiny bow centered over the base of the toes) to flats that merely invoke dance without actively representing it.

While ballet flats have often been popular in the last 30 years, it is only recently that they have become acceptable for formal occasions. While many have viewed the emergence of the ballet flat at formal events as a casual concession to comfort, this show actually has a proud
history as a part of formal attire and women armed with this history should be confident in their choice of a ballet flat for dressy occasions.

Lynn, our college graduate!

Our beloved Lynn has been working with us at Zappos since 2005, but that is only a fraction of the amount of time she has been studying for her degree. With working full time and other life intrusions, it has taken Lynn 10 years to get her bachelors degree in social work. We at Zappos are so very proud of her. After all, she is a part of our family, and families know how to celebrate!

Thursday we surprised her with a couple of gifts and cards letting her know how proud of her we are and how wonderful a person she is. Here is the short interview we did later in the evening:

Q: Now that you are done with school…. are you going to keep partying or will you settle down?

A: I’m never going to settle down, I will party to the grave!

Q: If you were going to do a psychological study of your fellow employees, what would you focus on?

A: All your childhoods, to see why you are all so crazy!

Q: What is your favorite color and what does that color stand for?

A: Blue. It is cool, calming, universal and peaceful.

Q: What type of social work are you currently involved in?

A: I work with Kentucky Impact through 7 counties services assessing children 6-18 years in their current environments and ongoing daily struggles.

Q: How has what you’ve learned at school helped you with your work at Zappos?

A: School has taught me to always look for the good in people, even in frustrating situations it has helped me be more tolerant of others.

Q: If you knew it was going to take 10 years, would you do it all again?

A: Yes – it is what I have always wanted to do.

Q: What will you do with all your free time now that you won’t have to go to school and work around the clock?

A: Catch up on sitcoms…..relax!

In conclusion, Lynn, YOU ARE AWESOME, and we all love you!!


Jeans with special construction and shading with front pockets that act like a girdle are a girl’s dream come true. Well, wake up ladies, it’s a reality. Well, according to the website, Oprah and Rachel Ray. I have noticed Rachel has been looking slimmer on camera in jeans, but just assumed it was diet and exercise, yeah right. Purportedly they slim your thighs, flatten your stomach, shape your butt, make your legs look longer and, oh yeah, come in many rinses. They can be found at The technique stems from classic denim but with a high nylon/elastane content. This gives them a ‘beefy’ strength to hold you in (no wimpy, gummy stretch here) and creates ‘memory’—the jeans never stretch out, bag out or lose their shape. (You will not have to wash them every time you wear them), said Catherine Hart, the company founder, via her website information. Don’t take my word for it, go to the website, read the testimonials, send your questions of disblief to or orders@skinnyjeans. Of course, there is that old fashion way of calling: 212/755-5577 or 866/946-8348.

Obviously, muffin-top stops here!

Miley's Ratings, Britney Being Good and Lindsey's Mom's Mother...Award? Really?

Well, it’s been less than a week since the latest Miley Cyrus racy photo scandal broke. Her “artistic” partially nude photos didn’t go over too well with parents of tweens and the backlash may be starting already. There are reports that ratings for last Sunday’s new episode of *Disney Channel’*s original series “Hannah Montana“ were down more than 30 percent from the last premiere. So is the dip in ratings due to the writers’ strike or is it just because parents are not permitting their tweens to watch “Hannah Montana” anymore? I mean, it’s not like we’re talking about “Desperate Housewives” here – “Hannah Montana” is as wholesome as TV gets these days.

Oh well, if Miley Cyrus moves away from Disney we can still count on the *Jonas Brother*s to provide some wholesome entertainment. That is until one of the JoBros gets caught up in their own naked photo scandal or worse. Oops, did I say that out loud?<p>Jonas Brothers fans will love this next piece of gossip – it looks like the Jonas Brothers have signed a deal to star in their very own Jonas Brothers 3-D movie due to be released next year! Hey, if the Miley Cyrus/“Hannah Montana” 3-D movie raked in that much cash surely the Jonas Brothers can top it. Perez Hilton is already planning his outfit for the Jonas Brothers 3-D movie premiere.

Mother’s Day is right around the corner and thankfully there is plenty of hot Hollywood mom gossip to go around. Britney Spears surprised everyone by actually showing up to her court date on time. This coming after a slew of missed court dates and finally having her visitation rights taken away completely. Could Britney really be getting her act together? Looks that way – the court has added more visitation rights for Britney Spears including overnight stays with her sons. Way to go Brit!

Angelina Jolie‘s pregnancy is old news, but there are now more reports popping up that she and Brad Pitt may really be expecting twins! The reports differ – some claim that she is having a boy and a girl while the latest report from Star magazine says it’s two girls. Either way, I’m sure the Jolie-Pitt clan is anxiously awaiting the arrival of the latest member (or members) of their family.

And here’s a real shocker – Lindsey Lohan‘s mom, Dina Lohan, was honored with a Mother of the Year award! OK, not really. It was more like “Long Island Top Mom,” but the fact that Dina Lohan would receive any kind of award for mothering is beyond me. It makes me wonder who Dina was up against for the award. Amy Fisher’s mom, maybe?

Not only that, but TMZ claims that Dina Lohan actually skipped out on a family counseling session to accept her award. Now there’s a woman who has her priorities in order.

And finally, Jessica Alba did a very sweet thing for other mothers to be this past week. The very pregnant Jessica Alba visited with students at a Los Angeles high school for pregnant teen mothers. Not only did she take the time to talk to the girls and visit each classroom, but she came bearing baby gifts for all 200 girls! How cool is that?

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Zappos Monopoly is Coming!

The Zappos Merchandising team is working with ZU to put together a Edition of Monopoly. 5000 custom Monopoly boards will be created by Parker Bros. featuring and our Core Values, and will feature properties “sponsored” by many of our top vendors! The proceeds from the property sponsorship and sales of board game set will benifit The Nevada Childhood Cancer Foundation .

Special thanks to Andy H., Richard Z. and Mark G. for putting this together! We’re almost there! More info to follow!


We here at Couture chat about products incessantly. For our readers, we refer, advise and suggest. However there are certain products that cross our desks that require a call to action, so ‘cravings’ was born. Our current cravings are for: Moschino’s stylish sailor-inspired scoop neck top with pleated sleeves/bottom and Jean Paul Gaultier nautically stripped cropped peacoat -esque jacket.

Wear them separately or together for a fabulously layered mixed print look.
Ooooooh la la!