A Blog by Maria Goodwin, Ambassador

Sixty one pounds heavier than she is now, Maria had plantar fasciitis as well as sore knees.  It didn’t help at all that she wore unsupportive flip flops in the mild Florida weather.

After seeing Orthaheels demonstrated on QVC, she decided to give them a try. In a few short days,  she experienced less heel pain and, conversely, less knee pain.

Shortly after, Maria joined Weight Watchers and lost 61 pounds which led to huge life changes: Her plantar fasciitis and knee pain were gone, she took up Zumba as her exercise of choice, auditioned and was chosen to tap dance with an over-55 tap troupe and began to walk on a regular basis. Maria attributes Orthaheels and weight-loss to her pain relief and newly discovered activities. She’s ready to throw out all other shoes in her closet and replace every pair with Orthaheels.

In her first blog entry, Maria recalls her path – from recognition to making a change:





(before)                                                                 (after)

Looking at a before photograph of myself, I thought, “Wow! When did THIS happen?”  Somewhere along the way from college to retirement, a fast-paced career had left me overweight, sedentary and unhappy.  Finally at retirement (or semi-retirement because a Type A never really retires), I decided it had to be about ME now.  So after a somewhat slow start, I finally determined I would get healthy the “old fashioned way”……..diet and exercise.

I joined Weight Watchers (for about the 12th time in my life. I still remember the plan where they had to eat liver for lunch….yuck),  and this time it worked!  Then I decided I would embark on an exercise program.  OMG…sweat? Me?  Yep…..gonna do it!!

Being a former dancer in my youth, I chose Zumba and augmented it with weight training and walking.  Turned out I LOVED Zumba and still do it.  I am also somewhat of an exercise junky now, always wanting to move or be active in some way.

Now, after losing 61 pounds and discovering I love to exercise, you’ll find me doing activities daily such as Zumba, tap dancing, reformer Pilates, and walking.  I walk whenever I can and love being outside enjoying Florida’s beautiful weather!

Even more unbelievable, to me anyway, is that along the journey I developed a passion for healthy cooking.  In fact, I blog recipes on facebook about how to eat healthy and clean.  Who knew a VitaMix and slow cooker would become my best friends?

Now I look forward to concocting new dishes and delights or just taking my favorite recipes and tweaking them a bit to make them healthier.

In fact, one of my favorite recipes is for a Ratatouille.  I got it from the Moosewood Cookbook and make it all the time.   My husband (who lost 68 pounds) and I enjoy it with brown rice and  some protein…..usually shrimp.  Maybe you’ll enjoy it, too.








  • 3 Tb olive oil
  • 4 med cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups chopped onion
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 medium eggplant, peeled and cubed
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt (I omit the salt)
  • 1 1/2 tsp basil
  • 1 tsp marjoram or oregano
  • 1/2 tsp rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 2 medium zucchini, cubed
  • 2 medium bell peppers (red & green), seeded and cut into strips
  • 1 14-oz can Low sodium diced tomatoes (with juice)
  • black pepper
  • fresh minced parsley (optional)
  • fresh parmesan reggiano cheese, grated


1. Heat olive oil in a deep pan. Add garlic, onion and bay leaf and sauté over medium heat for about 5 minutes.

2. Add eggplant, salt and herbs and stir. Cover and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 15-20 minutes until eggplant is soft.

3. Add zucchini, bell peppers, black pepper, and tomatoes. Cover and simmer for about 10 more minutes, or until zucchini and bell peppers are tender.

Top with grated cheese and serve over brown rice or a baked potato.


2 Responses to “ A Blog by Maria Goodwin, Ambassador ”

  1. Nice Job Maria

  2. You are awesome, Maria. I am not a big ratatouille fan, but I’ll look at some of your other recipes. You are an inspiration. I’ll have to get some orthoheels, too.

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