Thursday, February 07, 2013

I Ran a 10K, Part 2

After Sunday’s race, I was feeling pretty cold and sore. Ihadn’t wanted to buy a new pair of sneakers so close before the race, so maybe Istretched this pair a little too long. As it turned out, the alternate race course,although on Allentown City streets, was snowy and wet. So after the race, Itied up my laces and threw the wet shoes in a bag. I took a wonderfully hotshower and got dressed. My husband and daughter were on their way home fromvisiting friends, so I took advantage of the free 20 minutes I had to stop inat Aardvark Running Store (Main Street, Bethlehem).

First, I paid for parking using the ParkNow app on my phone.It pays for my parking and reminds me when the meter is about to run out.Convenient, and I don’t need to remember quarters or mess with the kiosk.

I’ve purchased the same pair of Asics sneakers from Aardvarkfive times. Every time I wear out a pair, I ask the pros at Aardvark to look atmy old sneakers for wear patterns. They suggest alternatives and also show methe new colors of my favorite model. I always give the Brooks’, Sauconys andNew Balances a shot. But each time I’ve gone back to the same model. I add anextra supportive insert to combat plantar fasciitis and I’m ready to go.

While I was checking out, I thought about all the businessI’ve given this locally-owned store. Besides sneakers, I’ve bought accessoriesfor warmth, headphones, sports bras, socks. I’ve asked a hundred questions andalways got thoughtful replies. I handed over my race bib with a coupon on theback and thought about all the support this local store has given the localrunning community. As I checked out, the owner of another local businessstopped in and his dog made laps around the store, greeting everyone. I lookedat the flyers with information about upcoming races, posted on the wall. Yes, Icould buy my next pair of Asics online. I know what I want, and I wouldn’t evenhave to leave the house. But why, when I could support this local business andhave a great experience doing it? Are there any businesses you support in this way?

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