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Nov 20, 2012

Where I shop for running gear

5 miles today.  Very mild out there this morning in the 40's.  It's nice not to run in tons of layers but I'm sure the cold will be back soon enough.

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The following is a list of some of the stores / internet stores / outlets that I shop at for my running gear that I thought I would share with all of you:

Running Warehouse(dot)com - My #1 go to internet store for running gear.  I hope they're always around.  They have sales all the time, they offer 10% discounts(if you know where to find them), they off larger discounts annually like the 20% off coupon on gift cards I just got.  They offer discounts if you follow them on Facebook.  They carry almost every brand there is out there.  Customer service is excellent.  I use their Facebook page for questions and they respond quickly.  They offer free fast shipping and free returns.  They give away things and/or have discounts on things based on what you buy.  My biggest issue with them - I wish they had a retail store here in the Detroit area so I could just go there instead of buying online.  I do, however, admit that I love getting their packages in the mail.

Road Runners Sports(dot)com - I used to shop here more.  They have a great VIP program but it has some automatic renewals in there so watch out for that but they have fair prices on most anything.  Free shipping.

Shoesontheweb(dot)com - I've bought numerous pairs of shoes here.  Free shipping.  Usually, they have great prices on last years model shoes which is great by me.

Onlineshoes(dot)com - I've also bought shoes here.  Purchased a pair of Saucony recently on their site.  Good customer service and free shipping and exchanges.

Underarmour - I've bought direct from them online and also through their outlet store.  Their store does not always have things in stock but sometimes you can find some great deals if you can find your size.  The store also has a clearance rack which is where the good buys are.  Things come in and out all the time and I'm not close enough to always get things but try to stop there when passing by the store.

North Face Outlet Store and direct - I've had some great luck with stuff from the North Face outlet store on deals.  I've also purchased direct from them online but there were no discounts available direct.  I've also shopped at their retail store but I'm not sure I've ever seen a sale there.  There is a huge store in Somerset mall for those in the Detroit area.  You can also purchase something at their outlet store(in Birch Run) and return it at the retail store if needed but you cannot exchange there.

REI - I don't usually shop for things online here because there is a store close to me.  They occasionally have sales but they don't carry everything and they can be expensive but if I need something in a hurry, they are a good option.  If anything, I enjoy browsing this store.  It is a big store.

Hanson's - my local running store - Yes, THE Hanson's.  The people that work there are great and offer excellent advice from experienced runners.  They will have an occasional sale but rarely.  I do buy shoes from them once in awhile if I go into the store seeking shoe advice and take up the clerk's time(it's the least I can do)  They also have a program where if you buy shoes, you can get a big discounts on a pair after you have bought so many.  They also offer clothing and other running gear but I've never bought clothes from them.  I do try to buy local but, unfortunately, I cannot afford to always shop there given prices online are so much less.

Things I also do -
  1. Get free shipping - it's not necessary to pay.  Find it elsewhere if you have to pay shipping.
  2. Try on shoes before purchasing them.  Why take a chance?  I have to admit that I've gone to Dick's to try on shoes and then bought them online.  Unfair?  Such is life.  Please note I won't do that to Hanson's since that is how the little guy goes out of business but Dick's can take it.
  3. I look for sales, coupons, discounts - usually I can find them and be confident I've got the best price for what I purchased.  Sometimes you have to pay full price but rarely.
  4. I rarely purchase direct from the company's website.  For example, why would I buy a Garmin on their website at list price when I can get it at Running Warehouse so much cheaper?  Why doesn't the manufacturers offer better prices directly?  Shouldn't they be cheaper?
I'm sure given that Black Friday is this Friday, many of you will be out there for it.  It's one thing that I cannot stand doing and have not gone out there in many years.  Most stuff that day can be found for similar prices other days and most some of the people out that day are crazy.  I probably will not go this year either.  I will; however, probably participate in cyber Monday though if I can find something I need want that's on sale.

How about you?  Where's your favorite running gear store to shop?

Have a great day and....Keep Running!!!!

11 comments:

  1. I've always been torn by a Hanson's/Running Fit allegiance. They are the Capulets and Montagues, the Jets and The Sharks (but they get along much better.) Plus, I have that guilt that comes from getting advice from a shoe store person and then giving my business to an online retailer.

    By the way, last year there was some sort of "small business Saturday" the day after black friday, where you get a huge discount if you use an Amex card at a local participating small business. Running Fit participated. I forget the exact discount, but it was substantial.

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  2. What about Target? I send my team there all the time for cheap running apparel!

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    Replies
    1. Yes, you are right, they have some good stuff too - C9 as Eric says below.

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  3. I get a lot of great running apparel from target. the C9 brand is solid, and well priced. I also love running warehouse. They have the best customer service I have ever encountered.

    I buy almost everything online for price point though... I have hard time paying what amounts to significantly more money in the local store.....

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  4. Thanks for the links, I enjoyed visiting them all. I obviously buy mostly from local SA shops and sites. Some brands are not available here and we have some very cool local brands as well.

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  5. ahh I got the automatic renewal thing from road runners sports and I thought I was going to lose my shit on them. lol.

    great post!

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    Replies
    1. Yup. I went through the same thing. Pain to get off.

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  6. Oh and don't forget to google for coupon codes for certain stores before you purchase. I've been able to find free shipping or a % code off for some stores.

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  7. For those of you near the Minneapolis/St. Paul area; there is a little store just across the river in St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin called Cyclova XC. Here is the link to their site http://cyclova-xc.blogspot.com/

    They support mountain biking, running, trail running and XC skiing; and while sometimes I can find a better deal online; I've also had them order me various items; such as my Nathan water bottle, for the best deal I could find. They provide a lot of local support for fitness and races, and the owner helped light some of our local XC trails. No, I don't work there or have any involvement other than as a customer; I just think the store is a hidden gem!

    BWMFA; good advice on finding coupon codes!

    Jeff, awesome post!

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  8. would like to say I never need to shop, but the sad truth is nothing lasts and just a couple of months ago I had to get a new Garmin as Mr. Garmin (aka 205) didn't like the wet winter we had! So I looked around and decided that Ms. 310xt would be a good choice. Shop price about R 4000.00 on-line price R 2700.00 guess where I went?

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    Replies
    1. I've got the 310xt too. Great watch. Now if I can only work on getting that sub 3 hour like you. Ha!

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