Local running stores to improve your stride and keep your feet happy

Big Peach Running Co, which has seven locations throughout metro Atlanta, offers fitness apparel, footwear and accessories.

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Big Peach Running Co, which has seven locations throughout metro Atlanta, offers fitness apparel, footwear and accessories.

Whether you're a seasoned runner or just thinking about taking up running as a way to get fit, Atlanta's running supply stores have your feet covered. It's important to keep your feet comfortable, healthy and injury free when you run. At these specialized running stores, professionals will help you find and size the perfect running shoes for your feet, and while there you might just find a few other goodies and gadgets to make your running experience a blast.

Cobb County

Big Peach Running Company. 1625 Ridenour Blvd., Kennesaw, Ga. 30152. 678-903-0022. www.bigpeachrunningco.com.

The Big Peach Running Company offers runners an opportunity to get the right running shoe fit by evaluating customers with a Video Gait Analysis. This enables you to understand exactly how your foot moves as you run by looking at your overall form and the pressure on the foot during your stride. After a thorough evaluation, customers receive a Fit, Feel & Ride recommendation that provides a comparison on how different running shoes affect your feet.

DeKalb County

One Step at a Time. 650-B East Lake Drive, Decatur, Ga. 30030. 404-377-1030. www.1stepatatime.net.

Started by Charles Cope, an avid runner who used running as a way to deal with asthma, One Step at a Time encourages customers to lead a healthier lifestyle by providing them with quality running products and helpful advice. After you find the right running shoes at One Step at a Time, join them for weekly runs with the Oakhurst Running Club.

North Fulton County

Phidippides Running Store. 220 Sandy Springs Circle NE, Sandy Springs, Ga. 30328. 404-255-6149. www.phidippides.com.

At Phidippides, you can find the latest running shoes and gear and access to regular running events and clubs. If you need a little help to get started, or looking to find a great training session to improve your time, Phidippides offers the Jeff Galloway Training Program to help you train like a pro -- with a pro.

West Stride. 3517 Northside Parkway, Suite 11, Atlanta, Ga. 30327. 404-467-1010. www.weststride.com.

If you want to avoid injuries and improve your running time, trust the experts at West Stride to fit you with the perfect shoes for your feet. In under an hour (typically between 20 to 40 minutes), West Stride consultants can perform a full gait analysis to evaluate your form, flexibility and stride to identify any issues before fitting you with the right shoes. At West Stride, you can also find local runs and a training program to help your running performance.

Gwinnett County

Classic City Running. 3480 Financial Center Way, Buford, Ga. 30519. 770-945-6815.www.classiccityrunning.com.

At Classic City Running in Buford, you can come in for a free running gait analysis and try out the running shoes on a treadmill in order to find the right shoes for your feet. If you need a little help to get started, Classic City Running can provide you with a calendar of local runs happening all around the metro area.

Interested in running in your first race? Choosing the right training plan can help.