Saving Money on Running by Running from Retail?

Sneakers and running stuff isn’t cheap. I mean, sure you’re sweating in it but when you factor in chafing you have to exercise a lot of caution when selecting running attire. It’s not always just that you need a “technical” fabric, because honestly my favorite tank top is basically a 100% cotton ribbed tank top from Target that I get on clearance for $2 at the end of the summer. It’s not pretty, but then I so infrequently look pretty in just about anything I run in that aesthetics can’t be my primary concern.

Do discount sites offer good deals for runners?

I like to peruse the flash sale/discount sites and see what’s doing. I have my own tracking system, if you will, and I keep tabs of what can be available and how much of a discount you can get for certain merchandise and yes, you can get some good running stuff on these sites.

Screen shot 2014-09-23 at 8.37.29 PMAfter surveying and keeping tabs on a bunch of sites, Zulily has a really great selection of apparel and sneakers. They’re currently offering Mizuno sneakers in a range of widths, styles, and colors that are unmatched on other sites for almost 50% off retail (I ordered two pairs myself and an early Christmas gift of Flamingo PJs for my mom). I’ve also seen them carry Brooks, Asics, Saucony, CW-X, and Oiselle merchandise to name a few of the brands I’ve seen here. The funny thing about this site is that it’s not limited to what I’d consider “traditional fitness apparel,” they offer dance attire (shoes, leotards, tutus, etc) and even equestrian stuff (boots, pants, jackets, etc) in addition to the normal yoga/run/zumba/whatever fitness stuff. It’s a site I often overlooked because it’s popular among the moms I know since they also offer a lot of children’s stuff. And hey, they frequently have a selection of Frozen and Disney themed merchandise to boot. Shipping is $8.95 and covers a day of unlimited purchases, so the shipping’s actually kind of the worst of the discount sites.

Screen shot 2014-09-23 at 8.41.03 PMRuelala hands down has the better shipping offer, one $9.95 fee pays for shipping for 30 days. I frequently find myself getting random $25 credits on this store, which is basically a $25 giftcard to use on anything. They carry Lucy, Saucony, Asics, and other brands focusing more on apparel than on sneakers. The sizing range is usually pretty lame, too, and sometimes they’re carrying the sneaker that’s the cheaper version of the brand, what you’d get at Marshall’s as opposed to at an actual running store (made this mistake). You know what I mean. All in all, I’ve never bought active anything from them (though I have a great flamingo pillow I got for free) but it’s a viable option and typically has the same offerings (sometimes at the same time) as Gilt.

Screen shot 2014-09-23 at 8.49.42 PMActive Gear-Up is probably what runners are most familiar with because we have this passionate hatred for Active’s registration fees. I’ve shopped here before with coupons and credits they randomly sent out and got a pair of pro compression socks for $20 with free shipping. They offer a really wide range of brands, including Oiselle, Pro Compression, balega, Mizuno, etc. but usually it’s nothing that ever moves me to actually buy anything since that one random purchase. They’re also currently having a special on Mizuno stuff but of course there are no wide width shoes. They do often carry a lot of sock options (discounted balega, for instance) and even that craptastic runner fuel so you know, shop carefully and price compare.

Compared to just a sale on a running store website or even a sale on the brand’s site, I’ve found the prices more or less comparable to the general sales. My favorite discount shopping event, though, is still the Paragon Sports Warehouse Sale in Union Square. I got my favorite running jacket there 2 years ago for under $30 and I love it, the discounts were insane because the later in the sale you go, the higher the markdown! It’s an old school Filene’s basement system and kind of a madhouse but nonetheless was totally worth it.

Anyone use any discount sites? For running, for house stuff, for regular clothes that have no stretch to them?


8 thoughts on “Saving Money on Running by Running from Retail?

  1. I really need to check out these sites more, I really hate not being able to try stuff on though so I find I usually buy running stuff in stores, then if I know I like something I have no problem ordering more of the same online!

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