5 Hazards of Bringing Small Children to the Local Running Store

The other day I stopped at my LRS (Local Running Store) to pick up a new pair of trainers with my youngest daughter. She’s 22 months and I’m lucky she has cute chubby cheeks and red springy curls, because maybe I can go back to the LRS again. I don’t know what it is, but every time I bring my kids with me to the LRS, havoc ensues. I swear they behave at the grocery store (usually). I can take them out to dinner (and I’ve only needed to request to-go boxes before dinner arrived a couple of times). I can take them to the doctor (and I’ve only worried once or twice that one of them broke a bone from jumping off the exam table). But when I take them to the running store it’s almost always a disaster!

And I blame these 5 things for making children in a running store worse than bull in a china shop.

1. Self-massage Tools. Like moths to a flame my kids head straight for the display of the balls, rollers and sticks. My favorite is when a clerk neatly and creatively spends hours stacking these items in some elaborate display only for one of my children to send all the things rolling every which way around the store like dominoes.

What kid doesn't love mommy's toys?
How could you blame her when she sees mommy having so much fun with all these things?

2. Racks of Clothing. What kid doesn’t like hiding in racks of clothing (when they’re not locking themselves in the fitting room)? The best, other than knocking the whole thing over and barely evading death or serious injury, is when they (finally) get their little behinds dragged come out of the rack with a sports bra on their head. Charming.

3. ย The Shoes. Eye-level, sparkly, bright colored, foamy, plastic objects are impossible for children to resist and on Saturday afternoon when a dozen cranky adults and entire high school cross-country teams are looking for the just-right $150+ footwear, is the time for the kids to start taking the pretty shoes off the display, trying them on and clomping and tripping all over the store in them.

4. Anti-chafing agents. When your child finds these items in the store, you, like me, might find yourself screaming, “DON’T EAT THAT! THAT IS NOT FOOD!”

5. The Food. So you bribe them with the (relatively) real food. “Here, have this cute pink package of all natural organic energy chews.” You thrust the bag at them as you frantically search for your credit card to get the heck out of dodge. You pay as your placated child chomps away. You leave the store releaved and ready to take said child home for her nap only to realize you chose the bag labeled “2x caffeine.”

So have you ever encountered a misbehaving child in a running store? Or are you known to misbehave yourself?

Salty Running boss and mother of 3 little ones with PRs of 3:10:15 (26.2), 1:25:59 (13.1) and 18:15 (5k). I love to write about running culture, mental training, and fitting in a serious running habit with the rest of a busy life.

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  1. I’m pretty sure that every single one of those happens when I take my kids to sports stores (Bike shops are even worse!) :) Always nice to feel some solidarity with other parents!

  2. OMG, I love this. And yes, but really for me, any store. It doesn’t matter where I go, my kids take a bee line to trouble. It always ends in destroying displays, knocking things down, etc., etc. My three boys are the worse when together. They see clothes racks as obstacles in a fortress where they are all the “good guys” competing against the cloth rack “bad guy”. It never ends peacefully. I am usually bribing with something I shouldn’t promise followed shortly behind me dragging someone out who was either “wounded” in their battle, or hit a hanger as I was grabbing them myself. Ah…the joys of parenting.

  3. Ha ha ha – love this! My boys are older now, but I totally remember all of these – including buying them a pack of energy Jelly Bellys.