The runner’s world is a relatively small one. There are race regulars, running group devotees, enthusiasts that have been pounding pavement
for decades and newbies that are lacing up
for the first time. In Northeast Ohio, you’re
bound to “run” into people you know who
love the sport, and independent shops like
Cleveland Running Co. make that easier.
The shoe store is the starting line for
runners. It’s where they get gear, gain advice,
join running groups and make lifelong
friends. But the shop is a front for what’s
really inside: a running community. “That
is our goal,” says Jeff Fisher, who opened
Cleveland Running Co., 20150 Van Aken
Blvd., Shaker Heights, in July 2011.
Fisher has been running since 1978 and
spent 20 years working at independent
running shops before working at a couple
of “big box” stores that sold shoes. He
began scouting locations for a running
store of his own and landed on this spot in
Shaker Heights, a community where there’s
always someone on foot, he says.
Meanwhile, buying local is a big draw
for runners who go to independent shops
like Fisher’s. Meanwhile, people go to
Cleveland Running Co. because they
want personal service, instruction and the
camaraderie of meeting other runners. And
Fisher delivers. Cleveland Running Co.
organized two running groups that draw a
pack—one meets Mondays and Wednesdays, the other on Saturdays.
Cleveland Running Co. also offers clinics on topics like nutrition and stretching,
and hosts weekly yoga classes. “We hope
runners come not just for the shoes but to
learn something,” Fisher says.
That’s why the shop’s tagline is,
“Your neighborhood store for running…
and more.” ●
Cleveland Running Co.