News from the Field

Veteran Fleet Feet Sports Owners to Purchase Fit Right


Fit Right, the Pacific Northwest’s nationally-renowned specialty running and walking store, announces that on November 20, 2014 the husband-and-wife team of Alan Rice and Susan Zepernick will take ownership of Fit Right as part of the Fleet Feet Sports system. Read the full press release here

Exercise - Rx for a Long Life!


"Today’s Miracle Prescription for Long Life – Exercise!" Dr. Jordan Metzl  

SILVER SPRING, MD – March 25, 2014 – The most commonly issued prescription by a New York City area doctor is not a drug, a pill, or a capsule.  It’s exercise!

“The number one prescription that I give to my patients is to get active and exercise,” says Dr. Jordan Metzl, who is the author of The Exercise Cure:  A Doctor’s All-Natural, No-Pill Prescription for Better Health & Longer Life.  Dr. Metzl has appeared on the national morning news shows on NBC, ABC and CBS to talk about exercise for better health.

“I think the concept of trying to build activity throughout your day is so important. And it makes you healthier,” says Dr. Metzl in his book.  “I encourage every one of my patients to move as much as they can.”

“Only a third of primary care physicians talk to their patients about exercise during their visits. That's got to change. I am trying to teach other doctors that exercise is medicine. It (exercise) needs to be taken seriously. Doctors can help by learning more about how to prescribe exercise.  People need to exercise in order to live longer and healthier lives.”

In addition to being a published author, Dr. Metzl is a physician who truly practices what he preaches as he has run Metzl Triathlon31 marathons and 11 Ironman triathlons.  “Basically, in my practice, I want people to move.”Dr. Metzl’s is convinced that any kind of daily activity, movement, and/or exercise are the keys to longevity, and it starts at childhood.

“People need to move.  My brain and my body work best after I exercise,” declares Dr. Metzl.  “I am convinced that movement will help children to learn and their brains to work.”

Just as PHIT America is focused on reversing America’s inactivity pandemic, Dr. Metzl realizes that being inactive on a regular basis is somewhat similar to smoking – it’s a health hazard.

“Sitting is the new smoking,” states Dr. Metzl.

Dr. Metzl encourages people of all ages to get moving and make exercise a daily priority.  For people who have not exercised regularly for years, he suggests they start slowly.

“When it comes to starting an exercise program, start slow and work toward a gradual progression of activities,” advises Dr. Metzl.

- See more at:

How Running Changed Me: Mark Goldhaber


Mark started with walking, progressed to running, and is now training for a half.

March 11, 2014
How Running Changed Me: Mark Goldhaber

NAME: Mark Goldhaber

AGE: 49


HOMETOWN: Guilderland, NY

FAMILY: Wife and one son (15)

What prompted you to start working out?

I was coming up on my 49th birthday and I was just tired of being out of shape. I was never overly athletic and I had been kind of skinny as a kid, but after I put on my "Freshman 50" in college, I became resigned to being overweight. I had ballooned up to 296 pounds at my heaviest, and was still just over 288. I couldn't run more than 10 steps or so. I was fat at age 20, 30, and 40, and didn't want to continue the trend at 50.

The first thing that I did was to decide that this was going to be different from all of my other weight loss attempts. I would always start out gung-ho, but eventually rebel against the restrictions that I had placed on myself. This time I was going to make a "lifestyle change." I would make changes gradually, so that I could be comfortable with the "new normal."

How did you start?

I downloaded the MyFitnessPal app for watching my calorie intake and RunKeeper app to track exercise. I started out just trying to keep my calories down and walking once or twice a week. I joined Runner's World's The Starting Line forum and looked for support from the friendly folks there. It took a month or two before I was walking 3-4 times a week, and I got fitted for running shoes to better support my feet. After another couple of months I was walking 10K on my long walks, and I had lost enough weight that my joints could support me running. I started with short run intervals on my walks and lengthened the intervals gradually. I signed up for the No Boundaries 5K program at my local Fleet Feet store and got guidance and support from my coaches, mentors, and teammates that had me running my first official 5K about 7.5 months after I first started this journey.

Describe your regular workout routine.

I'm currently training with the local Fleet Feet Distance Project for my first 10K in May. Right now we're up to 2-3 easy runs plus a speed workout and a long run each week. I also do strength training twice a week, once with a class and once as "homework."

What was the biggest hurdle to working out and how did you get over it?

Wow, so many hurdles. Inertia was huge. It was so hard to change what I had (not) been doing for decades. But once I got rolling and into the habit, it was amazing. It was like my body said, "You're ready now? Great! Let's go!" Now I get antsy if I don't get out to run for a couple of days.

The other main hurdle is making the time. I am a night owl, not a morning person, which makes it pretty much impossible to get out for a run in the early morning. Work and family commitments take an inordinate amount of time. With my training group, I've got a commitment that makes it harder to miss group workouts. For the remaining workouts, I often find myself running outside or on the treadmill at 9 or 10 o'clock at night. But while I will sometimes end up short a workout or two when things get out of hand, I take it in stride and don't let it discourage me. I just keep getting it done.

What's the most rewarding part of your running life?

The changes to my health and fitness. In addition to being smaller (almost eight inches on my waist alone) and lighter, I just feel so much better. It's great to not get winded going up a few flights of stairs or to just be able to pick up the pace if I'm in a hurry. I don't feel like I'm just dragging my body around all day (except for after really challenging workouts).

It also feels great to be out on a beautiful day, running at an easy pace, just enjoying being outside and clearing my head.

I harbor no illusions of becoming an elite runner; most likely I will be a perennial back-of-the-packer. That doesn’t mean that I won’t continue to race. I love the atmosphere, the camaraderie, and the feeling of accomplishment in crossing the finish line.

It’s funny. A lot of people have told me that I’m an inspiration, but I don’t see it that way. I’m just one of many thousands of people trying to get in shape and be healthier. I’ve just been doing a pretty good job of it so far. I just try to keep everything in perspective. But if my story helps someone else to improve their own health, that thrills me.

Did you have a weight-loss goal?

When I started out last March 1 at 288 pounds and change, I had originally hoped to lose 88 pounds by my 50th birthday (my mantra was "200 by 50"). Over the summer, it became apparent that it wasn't going to be possible to continue losing weight quickly while still fueling enough to get fit. I now say, "as long as I eventually hit both 200 and my 50th birthday, I'm good. So far, I'm down about 50 pounds, so I've got about 40 more to go. Thanks to the momentum and positive attitude that I've built, I know that it'll happen. It just may take a bit longer.

What’s the secret to your weight-loss success?

After so many failed attempts, I knew that I had to take a different approach to make it work. I've heard that many people who have extreme weight loss eventually put it back on because they don't view it as a long-term commitment. I decided that this was not a weight-loss effort. This is a lifestyle change. It's a long-term process, so if I go a while with no progress or even backsliding a little, it's OK as long as the overall trend continues in the right direction.

What kinds of changes did you make to what and how you ate?

I didn't so much cut out anything, because that would lead to a rebellion and I'd just quit. The biggest changes were shrinking portions to normal sizes and remembering that I only have so many calories per day so it became a conscious choice to eat or not eat treats. I also worked harder to find snacks that were less sinful, healthier, and still tasty. That part is still a work in progress. I just need to make trade-offs. Smaller portions help. If I eat a high-calorie treat, I either have to compensate in other meals or I have to work out to burn the calories. And, of course, I allow myself occasional cheat days so my body doesn't get into calorie-preservation mode.

What advice would you give to a beginner or someone just starting out?

  • You can do it. You can achieve amazing things if you just commit yourself to them. Decide that you are going to do this and then figure out what you need to do to make it happen. Commit and get out there.
  • Be smart about it. The odds are that you're not going to be able to just go out and run fast and far right off the bat. Run within your current ability, increase gradually, and watch your form so that you can avoid injury. When you build up a lot of momentum but then have to sit on the sidelines because you're hurt, it can be very hard to start back up again.
  • You don’t have to do it all by yourself. Join a group, training program, or running club, and sign up for the forums on Runner's World or elsewhere online so that you can take advantage of the advice that others in the same situation or who have already been there can provide. It's good to know that others are dealing with or have dealt with the same issues. A lot of my success is built on the support of my coaches, mentors, and teammates at No Boundaries and Fleet Feet Distance Project, the folks on the Runner’s World Starting Line forum, and my online and offline friends and family.
  • Everybody is different. Our motivations are different. Our preferences are different. Your fitness journey is just that: yours. Find what works for you, even if it’s not what works for everyone else.
  • You can do it. I put it in twice because it’s so important to remember.

What are your favorite motivational quotes?

My unofficial motto is "Keep Moving Forward." It reminds me that as long as I’m going in the right direction, speed doesn't matter as much. In considering my progress, I remind myself that I'm just taking it "One step at a time." When our group is out running (or even if I'm on my own), I'm often supporting my teammates and other runners that I pass with our catchphrase: "You got this!"  When I get near the end of a race, I keep repeating to myself "Here we go!" as a reminder that this is it and it's time to finish strong with everything I've got left.

What is your long-term goal?

To continue getting fit and pushing myself without hitting the rebellion threshold, I'm just doing it step by step. After my first (and second) 10K races in May, I've just signed up for Disney's Wine & Dine Half Marathon this fall. I'm not really sure whether I'll be able to run it or just run/walk it, but I really want to give it a good shot. My Disney friends have been encouraging me to get out there for a long time, so it’ll be great to celebrate with them at the finish line of my first half marathon.

I also want to find better ways to have my running help with my long-term support for the March of Dimes. This will be my ninth year walking for them and I’m hoping to up the ante (and the donations) by upping the mileage and linking my May races to my campaign.

Basically, my goal is to just keep moving forward, one step at a time.

Article published in Runner's World.


25 Ton Weight Loss Goal


Fleet Feet Sports’ New Year's Resolution Is To Help Americans Lose 25 Tons
(Carrboro, NC) January 7, 2014 – Across the country, Fleet Feet Sports stores have set an ambitious New Year's Resolution. The locally-owned running specialty stores want to help their communities lose a ton of weight. Literally. The 2000 pound weight loss goal is only part of the 12-week Ton of Fun Weight Loss Challenge taking place in more than 25 cities.

Ton of Fun incorporates access to fitness and running coaches, nutrition experts, group workouts, nutrition clinics, weekly newsletter communications, and incentive prizes for weight loss. Participants have weekly private weigh-ins at their local Fleet Feet Sports store and their amount of weight loss is recorded. Prizes will be given for different weight loss milestones. Participants have the chance to earn back the cost of the program and win a Fleet Feet Sports gift card for participating in at least eight of the weigh-ins and losing 2% of body weight. An additional gift card is earned if participants lose at least 5% of their body weight by the end of the 12 weeks.

Ton of Fun initiated at Fleet Feet Sports Rochester, New York, this summer when the Ridgeway location challenged the Brighton location (east vs. west) to lose a ton of weight. It worked! In 12 weeks, the participants lost over 3,600 pounds. Now, over 25 Fleet Feet stores nationwide are challenging their communities to lose a ton and to start the year off on the right foot. It takes commitment, support, and motivation to reach weight loss goals. Fleet Feet Sports is providing all of this, and more in this unique challenge.

Fox Valley, WI - January 1st
Baton Rouge, LA - January 2nd
Mount Pleasant, SC - January 2nd
Elmhurst, IL - January 2nd
Bonney Lake, WA - January 4th
Aptos, CA - January 4th
Rochester, NY - January 4th (3 programs for the year)
Gaithersburg, MD - January 4th (3 programs for the year)
Tacoma, WA - January 5th
Athens, GA - January 6th

Spokane, WA - January 11th
Baltimore, MD - January 11th
Tulsa, OK - January 12th
St. Louis, MS - January 18th
Columbia, SC - January 18th
Cincinnati, OH - January 18th
Montgomery, AL - January 20th
Seattle, WA - February 1st
Round Rock, TX - February 1st
Vacaville, CA - February 1st
Burlington, VA - February
Marlton, NJ - April 2014
Orlando, FL - April 2014
Sarasota, FL - September 2014
Other Weight Loss Programs
Chico, CA - September 29th - Move it to Lose it
Murfreesboro, TN - January 8th - Get Fit Challenge

About Fleet Feet, Incorporated
Fleet Feet, Incorporated is the industry leader in franchising successful, community-oriented, specialty stores serving runners, walkers and lifetime fitness enthusiasts. With 105 locations in 33 states and the District of Columbia, Fleet Feet, Inc. offers support for existing and potential franchisees out of its corporate headquarters in Carrboro, North Carolina.

About Fleet Feet Sports
Fleet Feet Sports is a locally owned and operated specialty store carrying footwear, apparel and accessories for walkers and runners. At Fleet Feet, you will find a welcoming environment where runners, walkers and fitness enthusiasts of all abilities receive unparalleled service and support.

For more information on the Ton of Fun Challenge, please contact Fleet Feet, Inc.; Megan Sierveld 919-942-3102 or Jillian Wiederer at 847-894-3230.  Or the program creator and store owner Ellen Brenner at (585) 697-3338 or (585) 270-4334.

When do I need new Superfeet?


One of the benefits of working at Fleet Feet Sports is having co-workers that will tell you when it is time to let go of your favorite Superfeet.  There are four signs to determine if it is time to be re-FIT for Superfeet.

1) If any of the Green plastic (or Blue, Berry, Orange, etc.) is slightly white or looks to like it is bending it is time to replace.  This happens when the insole works to keep your foot in alignment. 

2) Does the medial arch support look worn.  You can see this in the second photo with the right arrow.

3) Are you starting to wear through the top covering?  I love that my footprint is embedded on the top of my Superfeet because I feel that have I have earned that indentation.  But, it is time for me to invest in a new pair.

4) And last but not least - if you can't read "Superfeet" anymore on your insole - we look forward to seeing you soon!

Tips for Running in the Heat


One of the most important things about running in hot conditions is to understand that everyone responds to heat differently. Make sure to adjust your fluid consumption so you can keep weight loss down to not more than about 2% of your body weight.

High heat and humid conditions will always affect your performance but there are a few things everyone can do to mitigate the effect on the quality of your training and racing. Follow our tips below to beat the heat when training and perform at your best when racing:

Tips on how to beat the heat

  • Hydrate a little more throughout the day than you normally would

  • Wear a light colored hat to keep the sun off the top of you head and face.

  • If it’s really hot, run your top and hat under cold water before heading out the door. This will make a HUGE difference in keeping your core body temperature down.

  • Get out early! Morning runs will be your coolest option.

  • Plan a route that will ensure lots of shade (trails, tree lined street) – it makes a huge difference!

  • Whether you’re bringing water with you or stopping at water fountains always use some to soak your head to help keep your body temperature down.

Tips on preparing for a hot weather race

  • Get in some running during warmer conditions so your body can adjust to heat.

  • If wearing a cap, use one that allows airflow through the material of the cap.

  • Wear the same shoes, cap, sun glasses, clothing you anticipate wearing during a coming race.

  • After a warm-up for a race, cool your body with cold towels or even some ice packs rubbed on the skin.

  • While waiting for the race to start, stay in the shade as much as possible


Lastly, don’t forget to use the new Running Calculator from the Run S.M.A.R.T. Project to adjust your training paces for extreme heat. Input a recent race result, click the training tab, then add in the temperature you’ll be training in.

Run Smart Project


The Run SMART Project provides private coaching and customized training plans to runners of all levels. Launched in 2005, Run SMART now has 12 coaches from world-class running backgrounds, working with thousands of clients worldwide.

Dehydration - Leading Cause of Training Injuries

How do you HYDRATE?
Water is essential for LifeDID YOU KNOW?
Dehydration is the leading cause of training injuries.  It hinders every bodily function needed to run.  A 2% decrease in body weight caused by dehydration affects your performance.  Studies have shown athletes finish a 12K run up to 2 1/2 minutes faster when properly hydrated.
Water is 75% of your body.  Hydrate to avoid injury, recover faster, and perform better.  Every physical reaction in your body depends on proper fluid levels:
Blood flow
Temperature regulation
Delivery of nutrients to cells
Waste disposal from system
Muscle function
Joint cushioning 
Dehydration impacts mental toughness.
Running is as much a mental challenge as it is a physical one.
Even mild dehydration reduces concentration levels, negatively affects your mood, and cause fatigue. 

Dehydration is the leading cause of injuries

You can't forget to water a plant and then drown it in fluid to make up for it.  The same is true for your body.  Your body doesn't store water to use for later. You must hydrate continuously at the right levels all day to replace fluid loss.  
MEN: Your body weight x .35 = daily ounces of fluid
WOMEN: Your body weight x .31 = daily ounces of fluid

So whether you carry, wear, or hide your water in the bushes - make sure you are taking care of your body.  Again the main cause of injury is dehydration - so make sure you are packin'. 

A HUGE thank you to Nathan for pulling these awesome Hydration facts together for us.