The staff at Greater Boston Running Company—the Northeast operation of the national and online retailer Running Company—hopes customers are not misled by the name. They’ll custom fit everyone for shoes that support their pursuits, whether they be marathoners, CrossFitters, or a nurse who has to stand all day. The process starts with talking to guests about their average workout or day, followed by a meticulous measuring of their feet. Staffers then have guests walk, jog, or run on a treadmill equipped with slow-motion-capture software, which lets guests see things such as how their arches react when striking and lifting from the ground. Armed with this wealth of information, Greater Boston Running Company’s team can narrow the expansive shoe stock down to just a few recommendations.
Beyond an armory of footwear, Greater Boston Running Company stocks athletic apparel and accessories from brands such as New Balance, Garmin, and SmartWool. This gear is matched by a wealth of educational resources, both online and at the store level. Regularly posted web articles cover topics from how the seasons impact nutritional needs to how rubbing your body in bacon attracts wild animals and boosts your desire to run.
At individual locations, each store’s staff works with local running clubs, high-school teams, and charities—making them especially adept at pointing runners toward fellow runners and trainers who will help them reach their goals.
Plum Island Fitness believes the best pieces of exercise equipment have pedals, gears, and handlebars. That?s why it offers so many bike-oriented services, which range from cycling lessons for beginners and experts alike to spin classes taught by a seasoned AFAA-certified fitness instructor. For less intense exercise, the company also organizes bike tours of historic places such as downtown Newburyport and Benjamin Franklin?s old recording studio.
Bay Back Bicycles caters to every type of rider, where they're simply looking for a quick way to get to the grocery store or are competing in a triathlon. The shop offers everything riders need to take to the streets, from cycling apparel and helmets to the bikes themselves?including options with an electronic drivetrain to make shifting easy in any terrain, whether pavement or quicksand. If you already own a bike but it's in need of repairs, a team of technicians can fix brakes or refit new wheels to keep you rolling in optimum condition. Then, once you're back on two wheels, you can join one of the shop's group rides to zoom around town with like-minded neighbors.
Urban AdvenTours' team of bicycle experts leads tours through the historic and scenic neighborhoods of Boston and rents out and tunes up two-wheeled vehicles. The city view bicycle tour treats riders' eyes to views of the storied city, from North End and Beacon Hill to Fenway Park and through Back Bay. Urban AdvenTours' guides leverage their deep knowledge of the city and bicycles to answer questions and render each tour smooth and exhilarating, like a trip down a freshly sandpapered wooden slide. Each 2.5- to 3-hour-long tour includes a bike, helmet, and water, and covers 10 to 12 miles.
The Cardio Corner's nine certified instructors propel exercisers toward fitness goals during classes teeming with kickboxing moves and other dynamic methods of sculpting the physique. During cycling classes, they help up to 12 stationary riders envision the towering hills, freeing descents, and detours through enemies' flower gardens that are fundamental to an outdoor bicycle ride. Filled with deep breaths and slow, graceful poses, all-levels yoga classes provide a calming alternative to cardio classes' vigorous tempos.