Sole Man: Where Do You Buy Your Shoes?

  • By Brian Metzler
  • Published Jul. 1, 2013
  • Updated Jul. 15, 2013 at 10:51 AM UTC
A scene from inside Movin Shoes, a classic San Diego specialty running shop. Photo: Brian Metzler |

Online Retailers

What It’s All About
This is a four-letter word for most specialty running shop owners. Increasingly for the last bunch of years, there have been runners who have made a habit of checking out new models and trying on several at local running shops, only to leave and then buy the same shoes online. Sure, you can probably find someone selling the same model for $10 cheaper and offer free shipping. My practice is, whenever possible, to support my local running shops. That said, there are many running shoe brands that sell direct from their own websites and there are some great online retailers, including Running Warehouse, and

Why You Shop There
Because, that’s what the interwebs have done — put you, the consumer, in charge. You know exactly what you want, you don’t have to drive anywhere to shop and you can find the best price available. But buyer beware: you certainly won’t get the knowledge about how to finish your first half-marathon, understand why your shin hurts or what kind of hydration pack you need for your next long run. However, you might find an apocalypse survival kit or a batman motorcycle helmet online at a great price, even if that’s not what you’re looking for in the first place.

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Brian Metzler

Brian Metzler

Brian Metzler is the editor-in-chief of Competitor magazine. He has raced every distance from 50 yards to 100 miles and run in more than 700 pairs of running shoes in the past 25 years. You can reach him at

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