What’s been the talking point on the South Coast’s running scene recently ? Donald Trump … “No” … Absolute Running (AR), with their trademark “what can we do next” approach, have opened AR Southsea (pictured above). In a clever move that really complements their Wednesday 5.45pm AR Gosport run there’s now a 6.45pm AR Southsea option for a social and all inclusive 5K or 3K.
No. 14 Grove Road South is just North of both Palmerston Road and Southsea’s main shopping area. As I approached the shop those unmistakable grand windows were plain to see as well as a good 25 or so runners all listening to Kim Carter describing the route we would be running. Kim was taking the 3K group and Harry Carter the 5K group. As I opened the shop door David Brawn (sports journalist for The News) greeted me with a hand shake and a “good to see you nod”.
In no time at all we were off into the crisp night air and the streets of Southsea. Our run was mainly along the well-lit seafront people may know from the Great South. I say well-lit because the rows of colourful bulbs that are hung between the street lights give the whole area its seaside feel. We ran along Eastney Parade, past South Parade Pier, around Canoe Lake and then back along Clarence Parade before returning along Kent Road. I chatted briefly with some ladies as we got going and swopped likely upcoming races with David, then concentrated on keeping up 🙂
Once back to the shop I was impressed with the smart dark flooring and funky lights in the high ceiling, I also saw triathlete Mick Hawkes and met his wife for the first time too. AR have worked hard on developing their running community spirit and this shone through with us all happily talking to people we both knew and didn’t know. Harry was keen to make sure everyone had a refreshing cold glass of water as well as answering questions on what plans there were for the shop. With tonight’s Wednesday run established the Sunday breakfast run has now also been advertised, all comers welcome. It starts at Greens café , Canoe lake 8.15am for 8.30am, 30 minutes out, 30 back and then maybe add on some eggs & beacon !!
The shop has what you’d expect in terms of a great choice of shoes and related gear but I wasn’t expecting the place to be so stylish. The huge shoe display especially worked well as your eyes were drawn to the array of colours and makes. Naturally the treadmill was there for Harry’s running gait analysis and which shoe would suit you.
I chatted with Craig from the runr clothing line who I’ve talked to on twitter but not actually met before and as he said, it’s great to actually chat in person. So in summary a great run with great people organised by AR Southsea. Just like those coloured light bulbs along the seafront I’d say the shop has a “bright future” 🙂
Happy Running all …………