Running is beautiful because it requires so little: a decent pair of shoes and some free time and away you go! However, the running world offers loads of bells and whistles to help a runner stay comfortable and (perhaps) get the most from their runs. Also: once some of us start running, we immediately get hooked. Hence the urge to purchase some products. From now until Christmas, iRun editors, running shop owners and iRunNation tell us what they want this year for the holidays—move quick, us runners sure do.
Store: Running Free
“I run for a clear and present mind.”
Running Free, a store for runners, walkers, triathlete, cyclists and casual athletes alike, has expanded its’ focus beyond the runner to serve the community at large. Every year through a sponsorship program, Running Free supports upwards of 200 local athletes of all abilities to reach their goals, “we believe strongly that active community involvement is a way to reach out to our customers and to give back.” On top of aiding local athletes, Running Free annually collects thousands of used shoes through their Re-Use shoe program to those both locally in need as well as globally through their Mission Haiti initiative. To boot, Running Free volunteers locally for Toronto Cardiac Rehab and the Run and Read Program.
As one of the original founders of Running Free in 1980, Nick Capra has played a vital role in the store’s early development and success. While once a longtime cross country and marathon runner, Nick has seen Running Free evolve as running grew in popularity in the 1990s and through the 2000s. Today Nick has returned to a focus on the roots of running, he says, “I leave my watch at home and focus on the essence of running. Today, I experience running different. All too often we miss so much around us in our community.”
Holiday Running Item Pick: SAXX Men’s Underwear