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You Better Sprint to These 10 Greater Boston Running Stores

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Welcome to Fitness Week: five days of workout coverage, so that you can start your New Year's resolutions off right.


Image via South End Athletic Company/Facebook

Boston is one of the world's premier running cities—and that recognition goes far beyond the Boston Marathon itself. As the headquarters to innovative brands like New Balance and Reebok, the region runs the sneaker business. Expert retailers (Marathon Sports, South End Athletic Company) and even emerging brands like philanthropic apparel line Janji set the tone for a vibrant local business scene. Taking that a step further, the city is home to countless run clubs and residents devoted to hitting the pavement every day. All that said—there is great shopping when it comes to running gear. Here we've mapped ten stores that deserve a mention.


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1. Target

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550 Arsenal Street
Watertown, MA 02472
(617) 924-6574
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Don't write off Target just yet. We wouldn't recommend getting your kicks from the big box retailer, but it does stock some wallet-friendly running apparel from C9 by Champion. Bonus: You can grab socks and water while you're there. [Photo]

2. New Balance Factory Store

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40 Life Street
Brighton, MA 02135
(617) 779-7429
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This is the spot for sports enthusiasts on a budget. The store carries men's, women's, and children's sneakers and even apparel. The footwear is typically factory seconds, closeouts or discontinued product. [Photo]

3. Eastern Mountain Sports

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1041 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02215
(617) 254-4250
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For decades Eastern Mountain Sports has been providing New England with the ultimate selection of outdoor gear and apparel—and as such, is a good destination for minimalist running shoes from Merrell, Vibram, and Brooks. [Photo]

4. New Balance Experience Store

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583 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 266-1583
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Local legend New Balance opened an "Experience Store" in the heart of Boston, Copley Square to be exact, to share its history with the public. Take the learning opportunity to get behind-the-scenes content on your sneaker as you browse with a Fit Specialist. [Photo]

5. Marathon Sports

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671 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116
(617) 267-4774
Visit Website
Marathon Sports has become a Boston icon at the Marathon finish line and symbol of hope following 2013's April 15 tragedy. This regional running focused specialty chain is known for its gait assessment program, founded in the early 90s, and exceptional customer service. They also offer student discounts when you show a valid student ID. [Photo]

6. South End Athletic Company

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652 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02118
(617) 391-0897
Visit Website
South End Athletic Company has a superior running goods selection because its founders are serious runners themselves. The merchandise is coupled with video gait analysis to select the proper shoe, and a double whammy of group runs and personal coaching make sure you put 'em to use. [Photo]

7. South Boston Running Emporium

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653 East Broadway
Boston, MA 02127
(617) 464-7273
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South Boston Running Emporium just moved itself to a new location on East Broadway, still housing the same expansive mix of Saucony, Mizuno, Brooks and more. The primary focus here is distance running.

8. Heartbreak Hill Running Company

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683 Commonwealth Avenue
Newton, MA 02459
(617) 467-4487
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Named after the "heartbreaking" Boston Marathon stretch, Heartbreak Hill Running Company is the Newton outpost of SEAC. Customers are endlessly challenged by the Firehouse Run, an HHRC-devised route through the neighborhood. The shop will gladly log your completion times as you progress. [Photo]

9. City Sports

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37 Boylston Street, The Street Chestnut Hill
Brookline, MA 02467
(617) 566-0220
Visit Website
Another notorious New England favorite, City Sports has an impressive array of head-to-toe running equipment, including its own private line and an entire wall of sneakers. This relatively new location even has a "track" to test your potential new kicks, with staff to help narrow down options. [Photo]

10. True Runner

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220 Boylston Street
Newton, MA 02459
(617) 244-4303
Visit Website
This new specialized offshoot of Dick's Sporting Goods set up shop at Chestnut Hill Square. Offering not only arch and gait analysis, True Runner also provides sports bra fittings and lockers for those who want to start their runs right from the store. [Photo courtesy of New England Development]

1. Target

550 Arsenal Street, Watertown, MA 02472
Don't write off Target just yet. We wouldn't recommend getting your kicks from the big box retailer, but it does stock some wallet-friendly running apparel from C9 by Champion. Bonus: You can grab socks and water while you're there. [Photo]
550 Arsenal Street
Watertown, MA 02472

2. New Balance Factory Store

40 Life Street, Brighton, MA 02135
This is the spot for sports enthusiasts on a budget. The store carries men's, women's, and children's sneakers and even apparel. The footwear is typically factory seconds, closeouts or discontinued product. [Photo]
40 Life Street
Brighton, MA 02135

3. Eastern Mountain Sports

1041 Commonwealth Avenue, Boston, MA 02215
For decades Eastern Mountain Sports has been providing New England with the ultimate selection of outdoor gear and apparel—and as such, is a good destination for minimalist running shoes from Merrell, Vibram, and Brooks. [Photo]
1041 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02215

4. New Balance Experience Store

583 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116
Local legend New Balance opened an "Experience Store" in the heart of Boston, Copley Square to be exact, to share its history with the public. Take the learning opportunity to get behind-the-scenes content on your sneaker as you browse with a Fit Specialist. [Photo]
583 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

5. Marathon Sports

671 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02116
Marathon Sports has become a Boston icon at the Marathon finish line and symbol of hope following 2013's April 15 tragedy. This regional running focused specialty chain is known for its gait assessment program, founded in the early 90s, and exceptional customer service. They also offer student discounts when you show a valid student ID. [Photo]
671 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02116

6. South End Athletic Company

652 Tremont Street, Boston, MA 02118
South End Athletic Company has a superior running goods selection because its founders are serious runners themselves. The merchandise is coupled with video gait analysis to select the proper shoe, and a double whammy of group runs and personal coaching make sure you put 'em to use. [Photo]
652 Tremont Street
Boston, MA 02118

7. South Boston Running Emporium

653 East Broadway, Boston, MA 02127
South Boston Running Emporium just moved itself to a new location on East Broadway, still housing the same expansive mix of Saucony, Mizuno, Brooks and more. The primary focus here is distance running.
653 East Broadway
Boston, MA 02127

8. Heartbreak Hill Running Company

683 Commonwealth Avenue, Newton, MA 02459
Named after the "heartbreaking" Boston Marathon stretch, Heartbreak Hill Running Company is the Newton outpost of SEAC. Customers are endlessly challenged by the Firehouse Run, an HHRC-devised route through the neighborhood. The shop will gladly log your completion times as you progress. [Photo]
683 Commonwealth Avenue
Newton, MA 02459

9. City Sports

37 Boylston Street, The Street Chestnut Hill, Brookline, MA 02467
Another notorious New England favorite, City Sports has an impressive array of head-to-toe running equipment, including its own private line and an entire wall of sneakers. This relatively new location even has a "track" to test your potential new kicks, with staff to help narrow down options. [Photo]
37 Boylston Street, The Street Chestnut Hill
Brookline, MA 02467

10. True Runner

220 Boylston Street, Newton, MA 02459
This new specialized offshoot of Dick's Sporting Goods set up shop at Chestnut Hill Square. Offering not only arch and gait analysis, True Runner also provides sports bra fittings and lockers for those who want to start their runs right from the store. [Photo courtesy of New England Development]
220 Boylston Street
Newton, MA 02459