“You name it, we got it,” says Shane Stroup, the store manager of Gainesville’s newest running store: Fit2Run.
Fit2Run – “The Runner’s Superstore” – opened its fifth store, in August, right here in Gainesville at The Oaks Mall.
Fit2Run’s uniqueness, however, is not limited to its customer base.
What separates Fit2Run from the other running stores in the area, Stroup says, is its live gait analysis.
The store is equipped with four treadmills, each fitted with a video camera aimed at the runners feet and a television monitor for slow-motion playback and analysis. From there, employees can check a runner’s gait for foot-strike pattern and foot pronation/supination (heel bone angling inward/outward).
Though employees at Fit2Run wouldn’t let me videotape a gait analysis, the treadmill/camera set up looks very much like this:
(Video by: MlatiMudan22)
“Other stores in the area don’t offer that service,” Stroup says.
Another Fit2Run service unique among Gainesville running stores is its Club Fit2Run. Members of Club Fit2Run, which costs $30 to join, save 10% on all store merchandise, have a 30-day trial period on new shoes, receive advance email notification of special events and promotions, and receive “double discounts” on store sales.
The club membership ensures Fit2Run’s customers won’t get stuck with a pair of shoes that doesn’t feel or fit right, Stroup says.
However, Fit2Run doesn’t just sell shoes.
Take a walk around the spacious store, which features its own mini running track, and you will also find:
- Gators apparel: hats, T-shirts, long-sleeve shirts etc.
- Energy gels and supplements
- Blister pads and treatment products
- Shoe laces and accessories
At the moment an exclusively Florida-based store, Fit2Run started in Sarasota in 2006, Stroup told me in an in-store interview last week. The business is family owned and run by Bill Robinson and his son, Parks.
Stroup, an ’07 University of Florida graduate and member of both the Gators’ Track and Field and Cross Country teams, said he started at Fit2Run’s Tampa store in 2008 and “jumped at the opportunity” to return to and work in Gainesville.
His favorite place to run in Gainesville? San Felasco State Park.
Mine too, Shane.