As I get more into running, I have taken a ken concern in making sure every penny is stretched. Sometimes being cheap isn’t always best. It can cost in the long run…. *sigh. Case in point…
I had been cheap with my running shoes. To make a long story short, I went for the on sale lower end version of my running shoe; instead of getting the $120 shoe. $120 on a tennis just doesn’t seem right!
So I heard about free “shoe consultation” at Luke’s Locker and decided to give them a try. They are one of the top 4 specialty (running, tri, marathon etc) stores in the nation by the way!
Running “specialty stores,” are different than normal athletic or shoe stores. Unlike Foot Locker or Academy Sports, I was actually able to test the shoes out. Seriously! I was running on a tredmil for a mile. (free workout!) They also have an indoor track too! The staff was friendly, and VERY knowledgeable. I learned more about sneakers, feet and running shoes than I could read about in a book. I didn’t have to try on every shoe, and if I wanted to I could. The associate was so dead on my shoes and feet, that because I spent more on the shoe I actually will be saving more money in the longer run.
Before I was buying 2 pairs of running shoes a year. With the increase in activity, I was already about to be at #3 before the year ended. The cost of one pair of the newer shoes, would cancel me out of purchasing more shoes. Also, some of the lower end retailers do not have “true new” shoes. I had no idea!
The best part wasn’t just the fact that I could literally run up stairs in their indoor track or even hop on the treadmill for a run, it’s the return policy. I could test them out for a week (or two) on the treadmill, and if they didn’t work out right; Bring them Back! Seriously!!!!
This principal is important. When making purchases, large ones (yes, this was a large one for me! hahaha) make sure not only you do your research, but go to a specialty store in addition to going to the big retailers. Return policies are a make or break with me. Foot Locker is not going to take a shoe worn for a week. Trust me on this. I know!
If you have ever bought anything at Best Buy, you completely understand this principal. If not, google Best Buy Return policy and see what other people are saying. These aren’t lies either.
The shoe was retail price and I only paid 1 dollar more than what it was at another non specialty store. But, what I received was valuable knowledge, free information on free running events, my running posture (improper and proper), importance of cross training shoes, and much more far worth more than an dollar. I could go on and on….
Of coarse, in the future I will just buy my replacements online (onsale) 😉 But it’s great knowledge to know. This is truly saving in a long term approach. If you do not run that much, stick with a cross trainer or a lower model. Still, I would go to the store just to try on the shoes and gather what kind is right. Plus this is free!!