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Alton Sports Ambassadors – A trip to ‘The Runaway’ with New Balance

To most people Valentine’s Day means spending the day with a loved one and declaring your undying love, however… I went down the pub with several of my fellow Alton Sports Ambassador friends. We met at Farnham station, drank some coffee and boarded a train to London.

Today we were to be guests of New Balance at their pop up running pub for the London Marathon – The Runaway! We all felt like country mice running through London to the venue, there were so many people and traffic was very heavy, especially when you are used to rural country lanes. The run was just under a mile and we were all smiling, we arrived at the pub & immediately I felt like I was in an episode of Minder. Apart from the New Balance logos around the place it looks like a typical pub, down to the carpet that I think my nan & grandad had in the 70s.

We were met by three members of the New Balance team who took us round the Pub and also showed us the pub party trick of opening the duke box and revealing a staircase down to a basement. Down the stairs we saw perfection, the room was decked out with running machines, kettle bells, a yoga area and lockers so club runners can leave their kit while they went for a run.

Time for shoes! We  got to try on some of New Balances range and see their equipment designs for this year’s London Marathon. I tried the 1080 shoe from the current range & they were superb, very bouncy just as I like them, we will be going for a run later. After a coffee break, we were shown the marketing campaign for this year’s London Marathon. The campaign is based around real people actually using the equipment to train for a big event. The video was very inspiring and it was very refreshing to see normal people and not perfect bodied athletes making it look easy, the four months building up to a marathon are not easy!

After a moment of reflection on what New Balance have achieved we left the safety of the pub to go for a run around London. Wow lunch time sure is busy in our nation’s capital! The amount of people was just incredible, however we stayed together as a group and got lots of photos of the sights, we even saw the Queen! Or maybe she came out to see us?

We ran past Parliament and Buckingham Palace and just for me we did the final leg of the marathon. I am running the London Marathon 2019 and I am looking forward to it and doing that journey for real. We finally returned to the pub for a pub lunch and a gentle Q & A with the New Balance reps. I have to say that we all enjoyed our day out at the pub and I recommend if you find yourself in London before the Marathon, that you do check it out. What could be better – running and beer!

Dave Warman – Alton Sports Ambassador

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14 easy steps on how to buy awesome new running shoes!

We’ve just started 2019 and it’s great that everyone has marked out new fitness goals for the year. Whether it’s to start running, to get fitter, to run more or to smash some race PBs, then it’s all attainable and it’s great to work towards something to improve yourself, your health and your fitness.

At Alton Sports we think it’s vitally important that you have the right shoes and gear to make sure all your running goals are smashed! Even when you first start running, it’s important to make sure you’re running in good shoes so you don’t injure yourself and miss out on running. And if you’re a seasoned runner then it’s always exciting to try something new out or pick up a tried and tested favourite.

Here’s our 14 Easy Steps (with pictures) on how to pick up new shoes running shoes from us!

1) Choose your store (Farnham pictured), we have 5 stores in total with Eastleigh, Alton, Gosport and Four Marks making up the quintet. Then come and see us! 

2) Admire the ridiculously large selection of  running shoes we have to offer!

3) Speak to one of our expert team members who will ascertain what you need / what you’re after / what your running goals are and whether you need road / trail shoes…

4) Measure your feet – it’s amazing how many people are surprised that they’re a size 10 when they thought they were a size 8 and they were wondering why their toes were bleeding!

5) Do a full gait analysis to make sure that we find the perfect shoes for you!

5.5) Check the results…

6) Try a bunch of shoes on to see what you like!

7) Run in them to make sure they work for you…

8) Choose the pair / pairs you like and fantasise about the awesome running you’re going to do…

9) It’s always good to accessorise with one of our ace in-store deals (just ask us when you come in what we can do for you!)

10) If you visit our flagship Farnham Store you can pop upstairs to Benson’s!

11) For all the best lifestyle running shoes and apparel…

12) Pay for your purchases, safe in the knowledge that it’s an investment in your healthy future!

13) We’ll bid you farewell and we’ll even open the door for you. Well, Richard will as he’s a very polite Swedish man. 

14) You’ll go home thinking about which shoes to come back for next time! Happy running! 

If you can’t come in and see us, then check our website and follow us on social media for everything we do!

Facebook / Instagram / Twitter.

Here’s to a brilliant year of running in 2019!