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OCTOBER 15, 2019


What is it? It’s not pot. What’s it do? Reduces inflammation and pain. Does it work? Just read the product claims. Who makes it? Dozens of companies. See page 18. Who should sell it? Run specialty retailers!

Page 2: Jackrabbit ups its game with surprise purchase of full-line retailer Olympia Sports.

JackRabbit Acquires Olympia Sports Run specialty chain takes over full-line Maine-based sporting goods retailer. / By Mark Sullivan


n a move that surprised many in both the run specialty and sporting goods industries, JackRabbit last week acquired Olympia Sports, a Maine-based sporting goods retailer that operates about 140 stores. Bill Kirkendall, president of JackRabbit, says the move was made to fulfill the company’s mission to become a full-fledged active lifestyle retailer. Since acquiring JackRabbit in March 2017, Critical Point Capital has acquired Clever Training, which it has integrated into its run specialty stores, and now Olympia, which Kirkendall says would continue to operate as a full-line sporting goods store, albeit with about half of its current door count, with the bulk of the stores in the Northeast. “We like the smaller store format in small towns,” Kirkendall tells Running Insight. “We’ve proven we can do a good job serving local markets and we want Olympia to be the hub for sports retailing in those towns. The average store size going forward will be about 5500-square feet, according to Kirkendall. Olympia’s merchandise mix includes footwear, team sports apparel and equipment and licensed apparel. Running footwear accounts for about 30 percent of the footwear sales and Olympia does carry some footwear SKUs that are typically found in run specialty stores, such as the Adidas Ultraboost and the Brooks Ghost and Adrenaline. Kirkendall says in certain markets, Olympia will open Jackrabbit Shop in Shops that feature an assortment of running shoes, apparel and gear. “We’ll utilize JackRabbit where it makes sense and where we can provide solutions to runners in these communities,” he says. The plan is to operate Olympia as a 75-door chain, with the remaining doors closing by the end of February.

The buying and executive team for Olympia will operate out of JRS headquarters in Denver. Kirkendall says the goal is to have that team in place by the end of the first quarter. Olympia was founded 45 years ago and grew to more than 200 stores. But like many retailers Olympia felt growing pressure from online sellers and big-box competitors. A number of years ago Olympia was rumored to be an acquisition target for publicly traded Hibbett Sports, which operates more than 1000 stores in 32 states. That deal never materialized and Olympia continued on but gradually closed doors as the retail market got tougher. Under Critical Point ownership, Olympia will have access to money for strategic initiatives and improved in-store design and cosmetics. “Our goal is to improve the customer service experience in Olympia stores,” Kirkendall says. “This acquisition continues

RUNNING INSIGHT ® is a registered trademark of Diversified Communications. © 2019 all rights reserved. Running Insight is published twice each month, is edited for owners and top executives at running specialty stores and available only via email.The opinions by authors and contributors to Running Insight are not necessarily those of the editors or publishers. Articles appearing in Running Insight may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the express permission of the publisher. Divesified Communications, 121 Free St, Portland, ME 04101; (207) 842-5500.


JackRabbit’s expansion and commitment to providing the most complete, high-performance product offerings, services, and experiences to the active lifestyle fan across all markets and channels.” JackRabbit operates 60 retail stores in 17 states and its e-commerce sites jackrabbit. com. JackRabbit bolstered its presence in the active lifestyle category in 2017 through a joint venture with Rogue Training, a training company for runners, and again in 2018 with the acquisition of Clever Training, a provider of fitness technology and accessories. With the addition of Olympia, the consolidated company will operate 135 brick and mortar stores. Some in the industry have speculated that the acquisition of Olympia by Critical Point is a step toward building a larger more diverse business that can eventually be sold or taken public. n


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Hit the Road 11 important but often overlooked elements of a successful road race. / By Daniel P. Smith

W 4

For-profit entities, corporate players and even private-equity firms have worked to outduel one another over the years with races headlined by elaborate post-race parties, sophisticated marketing and entertainmentpacked courses. In the process, they’ve reshaped the industry and raised participants’ expectations. Unfortunately, that rush has made the local 5k look tame and boring in comparison, even if it’s far from an apples-to-apples comparison.

While national series like Rock ‘n’ Roll and Hot Chocolate, marquee events like the Peachtree Road Race and Bolder Boulder and high-level marathons in Boston, Chicago and New York City capture hefty attention, most of the nation’s races remain confined to communities and neighborhoods peppered across the U.S. They’re Turkey Trots and church-sponsored 5ks, races with a philanthropic bent and events tied to long-standing community traditions. They’re 300-person races eager to become 500-person races

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Photo: Bay Bridge Half Marathon

e’ve come a long way from popsicle sticks denoting a runner’s finishing place and water-filled Dixie cups. Years ago, a successful road race largely featured an accurate course, some post-race grub and maybe, just maybe, a performance T-shirt. These days, however, participants expect all that and more. Much more. “Today, a race is just the start of it. ‘Event’ is the key word,” says Chris Hughes, of Orlando-based Track Shack.










Road Race Tips (continued) the Oakland-based company behind the Bay Bridge Half. For Bay Bridge, Mascot also offered its Expo in a Box for $29, an opportunity for participants to skip packet pickup all together and score some additional goods. The carefully curated box, which was sent directly to a participant’s house two weeks before the event, included the race tee, bib, timing tag, two free seats to an Oakland A’s game, a tube of Nuun (the on-course hydration), sunscreen, a finisher’s towel and more. “It had everything one needed to show up at the starting line,” Dawkins says.

To prompt photos and social media sharing, race organizers at Washington, D.C.’s popular Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run unveiled a mosaic featuring every participant’s name.

and then 700-person races — and they certainly don’t have the budget or wherewithal for postrace fireworks or video boards. So, what’s a local race to do (beyond securing deep-pocketed sponsorship capable of unlocking creativity, that is)? How can races emerge more dynamic, engaging and distinctive events that garner attention, grow and become annual on-the-calendar staples for runners and non-runners alike? #1. ABOVE ALL, NAIL THE BASICS OF THE RACE To be certain, the foundational necessities remain critical. Races must include: a certified course; accessible, accurate results; post-race food and drink; some race-specific schwag; and standard services like portable toilets and ample hydration, both on and 6

off course. “Miss a ny of these a nd you’re going to get destroyed,” says Mark Colpoys, of RAM Racing, the Chicago-based outfit responsible for the 22-city Hot Chocolate race series as well as the eight-race Run This Town series in Chicago. “Those are some of the deadly sins.” #2. DITCH THE TRADITIONAL PACKET PICKUP In Oakland, the inaugural Bay Bridge Half in May bypassed the traditional packet pickup in favor of two-hour pop-up parties at two different local venues. The events included raffles and giveaways, a DJ spinning tunes and the Liquid Medal beer brewed exclusively for the event. “It’s all about being social, motivating and inspiring,” says Ryan Dawkins, of Mascot Sports,

#3. IMPROVE YOUR GOODIE BAG GAME. RAM set a high bar more than a decade ago when it bypassed race T-shirts in favor of premium participant schwag such as zip-up hoodies and jackets at its earliest Hot Chocolate races. “The old goodie bag with lots of samples of stuff, coupons that people didn’t look at and a simple T-shirt doesn’t cut it,” Colpoys says. RAM has continued pushing the envelope. The company has put a prospective goodie bag online to solicit feedback and also held online polls to gauge the favored race-day apparel item, including colors and designs. “This is a way of engaging people before they even get to the event and it helps us deliver the experience they want,” Colpoys says. #4. CREATE PERSONALIZED TOUCHES Rather than one-size-fits-all experiences, race directors are investigating ways to provide a personal spin. Some races set up a timing checkpoint 100 meters

or so from the finish line that then relays participants’ names to an announcer who can celebrate individual participants crossing the finish line; others have installed a “PR bell” at the finish line that participants can ring if they set a personal best or are otherwise pleased with their results. The Rock ‘n’ Roll series offers an a la carte VIP Experience that includes perks such as VIP restrooms, a private gear check, a complimentary post-race bar, massage zones, parking, premium concert viewing and more. “And there are hundreds who pay for this more personalized experience,” says Creigh Kelley, race director of Colorado’s Colfax Marathon Weekend who also announces about two dozen prominent races around the country each year. The Hot Chocolate series, meanwhile, has begun providing legacy awards to participants who have run three, five or 10 races in the nationwide series. Legacy awards include additional schwag, a medal and a distinct bib that marks a participant’s legacy status. “This also helps perpetuate people going to our events in other cities,” Colpoys says. #5. TELL A DEEPER STORY To more deeply celebrate its Oakland roots, the Bay Bridge Half prioritized local partners and showcased its community ties. Gender-specific race tees came from local design house Oaklandish, the event started and finished at Oakland’s heralded Old Kan Brewing and the event’s mile markers featured original paintings from local students. “We were able to show we were intensely focused on © 2019 Diversified Communications

Road Race Tips (continued) local,” Dawkins says. “People see this, respect it and want to be involved.” #6. ENSURE A SEAMLESS EXPERIENCE The tech revolution has improved and simplified registration while digital timing provides fast, accurate results. It’s quick, easy and seamless. “The components are there to do this and there’s certainly an expectation it’s done this way,” Kelley says. That same seamless experience needs to flow elsewhere. From parking to finding the race-day packet pickup tent to clear course signage, don’t leave participants guessing. #7. CRAFT COURSES WITH ENERGY Bring energy and intrigue onto the race course. Take participants to places they might not ever go – museum grounds hosting World War II aircraft, into the bowels of the football stadium or onto the private grounds of a posh estate – or use existing courses in a more dynamic way. More than half of the 13.1-mile Bay Bridge course, for example, kept runners hovering above the San Francisco Bay. Kelley, meanwhile, employs a full-time entertainment manager to enliven the courses for Colfax Marathon Weekend races. Entertainment includes Elvis impersonators, live bands, jugglers and drum lines.

The inaugural Bay Bridge Half in Oakland featured some notable elements, including an oversized finisher’s medal and artistic mile markers designed by local students.


#8. BUILD SOCIAL MEDIA BUZZ In today’s social media age, many people are hunting for that Instagrammable moment and savvy races provide plenty of opportunities for photo ops. At the finish line of the

inaugural Chicago Beef 5k in May, participants could take photos with beef sandwich mascots. In D.C., Credit Union Cherry Blossom race organizers installed a “name wall” at the expo and later near the finish line that listed every entrant’s name, which prompted hundreds of participants to find their name and snap a photo with the mosaic. Other races offer selfie stations at the finish line or invite participants to stop and snap photos at a scenic overlook or on-course art installation. “Give them an experience they can capture on social,” Dawkins says. #9. PROVIDE A PARTICIPATION TROPHY. Though some hard-core runners cringe at the thought of handing out a medal to finishers of a 5k, today’s participants largely desire such rewards. Colpoys saw Chicago’s famed Shamrock Shuff le 8k add a finisher’s medal to its raceday package after more than three decades of shunning the reward. “They started doing it because of the demand,” he says. “Now, everyone wants a medal.” And the medals best have some spun k. The Chicago Beef 5k featured a colorful medal mimicking the popular Chicago sandwich while the Bay Bridge Half in Oakland dished out an 8-inch, 3.5-pound finisher’s medal reminiscent of the famed Bay Area bridge. For those who ran at least four races in RAM’s Run eight-event Run This Town Series, RAM issued an additional Chicago flag-themed medal. Others veer away from medals and issue other participation © 2019 Diversified Communications


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Road Race Tips (continued) trophies, such as pint glasses or ceramic coffee mugs.

The Bay Bridge Half hosted its post-race party at Oakland’s Old Kan Brewing, which brewed up a special Mexican lager exclusively for the event.

#10. THINK BEYOND BANANAS AND BAGELS. According to Colpoys, the days of providing a bagel, banana and Budweiser have evaporated as participants desire more distinctive post-race food and drink. At RAM’s Mag Mile event in Chicago, for instance, RAM serves brunch to 4500 people; at its Bucktown 5k, the company commissioned a special Chicago flag donut; and its Cinco de Miler race included breakfast tacos and a Mexican lager from Revolution Brewing. “Participants want something unique that provides a more memorable overall experience,”

Colpoys says. It is vital to deliver. #11. STEP UP THE POST-RACE PARTY Following the Bay Bridge Half on May 5, Mascot Sports threw a lively post-race party at Oakland’s Old Kan Brewing, a celebrated spot from Michelinstarred chef James Syhabout. The party included a mariachi band, a Mexican lager brewed exclusively for the event (Liquid Medal) and an oversized pinata resembling a Brooks Launch shoe. The pinata was then stuffed with Brooks gear, golden tickets for Brooks shoes, Oakland A’s tickets and other goodies. “It was good clean fun and people were fired up,” Dawkins says.n

Who’s In Charge Here?

The Retailer As Race Director: Still a prominent 1-2 punch? WHEN TRACK SHACK OPENED IN Orlando some four decades ago, owners Jon and Betsy Hughes staged races to feed demand for their fledgling retail store. Other running retailers across the U.S. shared a similar strategy, getting into the race director business to build synergy with the retail operation. “In our case, there’s total synergy and one feeds the other,” second-generation Track Shacker Chris Hughes says. But is the retailer-race director combo still a prominent and viable one-two punch? In a novel transaction, Chicagobased RAM exited the retail business in 2016 when it traded its Running Away Multisport location in Deerfield, IL, to Fleet Feet Chicago in return for Fleet Feet’s race management division and races like the Soldier Field 10 Mile.


In announcing the transaction, Fleet Feet Chicago CEO Dave Zimmer said he wanted to focus on getting customers the right running gear and not worrying about race logistics, while RAM CEO Steve Ginsburg said it was clear his company’s growth resided in race operations, not retail sales. After all, being in both businesses today, while synergistic, presents challenges. On the race side, specifically, there sit barriers to entry with timing devices and investments in personnel who can handle events, promotions and sponsorships. “ I t ’s s i m p l y h a r d e r t o b r e a k into races now,” says Road Race Management president Phil Stewart, who doubles as director of the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile in Washington, D.C.

More than 30 years ago, Track Shack got a jumpstart on the race market that has helped it evolve and pivot in thoughtful ways over the years, which is much different than starting from scratch in today’s environment. “With the growth of the race industry, there are so many who need timing or assistance with little things and maybe that’s the running shop’s opportunity to be a reliable provider instead of being the full-fledged race management company,” Hughes says. Though in some markets, Stewart notes, running stores might have to embrace a more involved role. “There are areas perhaps begging for this race expertise more than others and that’s where the running shop might have more opportunity to do both,” he says. n

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Yes We Can-nibas! As CBD goes mainstream, the market weeds out the facts of this latest Green Rush. / By Judy Leand


annabidiol, usually abbreviated as CBD, is purported to ease anxiety, promote better sleep and reduce pain and inflammation, among other things. At present, it’s featured in a dizzying array of consumer products ranging from coffee, tea, beer and sports drinks to bath salts, pet products, cosmetics, balms, lotions, tinctures and pills. The options are sure to continue to proliferate due in large part to the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill that legalized hemp. CBD products derived from hemp are legal to possess as long as they contain 0.3 percent of THC or less. CBD is one of the most prevalent active ingredients of the cannabis plant. Another even better-known active ingredient is tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, which causes users to get high. While CBD does not cause such a psychoactive experience, some research suggests that CBD may affect the endocannabinoid system, a series of receptors and transmitters found throughout the body that seem to interact with various compounds in cannabis (including CBD), and some of which are related to feelings of pain and anxiety, or help to regulate sleep patterns. For example, if a person is injured, native cannabinoids increase to resolve the inflammation and other damage signals associated with the injury. They also increase after strenuous exercise (another stressor), and help regulate immune activity, appetite and memory formation. The CBD market from hemp alone totaled $327 million in 2017, and will be a $22 billion industry by 2022, reports Brightfield Group, a market research company specializing in cannabis. Another research firm, Statista, expects U.S. consumer sales of CBD products to reach approximately $1.8 billion by 2022, a massive jump from about half-a-billion dollars in 2014. Thus, it says, the CBD consumer market is following the trend of the total legal cannabis market in the U.S., which is anticipated to hit $23 billion by 12

2025. Moreover, a January 2019 Consumer Reports survey found that an estimated 64 million Americans have tried CBD in the past 24 months. This is certainly good news for running specialty stores, particularly since a growing number of runners and endurance athletes are actively seeking out alternatives to traditional pain medications and recovery aids. CBDs Growing Appeal

There are a number of factors fueling the rapid expansion of the CBD market and chief among them is consumers’ increasing desire to improve their health and wellness with natural products. “People are aware of the side effects of drugs like ibuprofen and there’s a downside to using large doses to manage pain. CBD can be applied topically or ingested and people are seeing that CBD is an all-natural way to ‘stay in the game,’” explains Jay

Ohare, CEO of Venga Endurance. “More top-level runners are using CBD and the conversation comes up naturally among those in the running community — there’s a lot of positive word-of-mouth.” Kristie Buehner, business development manager at Muscle MX, observes that many consumer categories have been stale lately, “and companies are adding CBD for innovation and excitement as a new way to fight pain and inflammation that works.” She also mentions that people are looking for natural solutions and are tired of the usual pharmaceuticals. The fact that companies are now allowed use industrial hemp to make CBD products is also propelling the market. “When mainstream consumers experienced the effectiveness of these types of products it loosened the stigma that cannabis products are hippy-dippy and just a throwback to the ’60s. Word-of-mouth testimonials started

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Yes, We Can-nabis (continued) coming from trusted sources,” explains Tyler Mintz, COO of Arcanum Sports Performance. “It’s one thing when crazy Uncle Joe claims that marijuana helps his glaucoma and an entirely different thing when a member of your running club claims CBD helps her recover faster.” As Mintz also points out, longneeded research is now starting to happen and is helping to explain the science behind the products. These factors have made it possible for mainstream consumers to try CBD without going into a dispensary or applying for a medicinal cannabis card. Confusion in the Marketplace

On the downside, consumer bewilderment and a hodgepodge

of conflicting regulations have combined to tamp down on the full potential of the CDB market. So far, the regulation of CBD is yet to be clearly established and the laws and regulations governing both CBD and marijuana remain confusing and inconsistent. Because many CBD products are sold as dietary supplements, they’re not included in the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s regulation process. This in large part explains why the current CBD market is like the Wild West in that almost anything goes — some experts even compare the current marketplace with the snake oil scams of the 1800s in which fast-talking charlatans sold quack remedies. At this point,

unscrupulous companies claiming to have a miracle elixir may face warnings, but few serious repercussions, and are only helping to sow confusion. Amy Kaplan, national sales manager for the Functional Remedies’ EndoSport line, believes that many consumers are puzzled by the differences between marijuana and hemp (and it doesn’t help that the two look identical). There is a dichotomy between what people have grown accustomed to seeing as an illegal substance and what is now a legal commercial product. On the regulatory front, she observes, “The FDA has not yet confirmed its regulation of CBD so the [confusing] landscape that exists today will be greatly

reduced once regulations are in place, as the ‘green rush’ includes many brands that are producing and marketing with no standards. Many retailers are waiting for the FDA to make a stand in case of liability.” Arcanum’s Mintz expounds on this idea. “The disinformation campaigns from the Reefer Madness era in the mid-1930s were amazingly effective. The roots of the campaign run deep and have persisted for decades,” he says. “Hemp and marijuana are still considered by many to be one and the same. There is

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Yes, We Can-nabis (continued) “Companies are adding CBD for innovation and excitement as a new way to fight pain and inflammation that works.” KRISTIE BUEHNER MUSCLE MX

also the issue of consistency and the quality of CBD. No one is policing the industry, leaving the door open for [impure or tainted] product to be sold right next to pure product grown and created correctly.” Of course, this confusion and “buyer beware” outlook is having an effect on the running specialty channel and is putting a damper on sales and consumer acceptance. “There is a lack of regulation in the category and thus a lot of misinformation,” asserts Jon Robichaud, VP–marketing at iKOR Labs. “There is a hesitation within running and bike specialty channels. Consumers are apprehensive to try new brands and retailers are hesitant to bring new brands in. There are a lot of brands out there, but not all are reputable and not all deliver on their promise. Retailers need more data. There’s lots of anecdotal evidence but more hard evidence is needed — we have to separate the hype from the actual benefits.” Consumer/Retailer Education

To promote a better understanding of how CBD products work and what they can and can’t do, brands need to devote time and resources to educate running specialty retailers and their customers. For iKOR’s Robichaud, providing education is paramount because it ensures that retailers understand the end use of a 16

product. “It’s up to the brand to provide information such as POS pamphlets and downloadable information,” he says. “Product sampling is also critical because it allows the end-user to have a better connection to the brand and helps to ‘humanize’ the product.” Toward this end, iKor currently sponsors the Ragnar Relay Series of long-distance running relay races, which provides an even wider scope of consumer touch points and interactions. Meanwhile, Venga’s Ohare exhorts retailers to research the products that they’re stocking. “There’s kind of a land grab going on regarding market share so it’s incumbent on the retailer to get as educated as possible before stocking the product. Also, get lab reports on the products you’re interested in carrying so you know what’s in the bottle and how it works. Runners are willing to pay more for a high-quality product — they want results.” He also believes that it’s good for running sales staffs to try the products for themselves so that they can offer a first-hand account to customers. “The best advice is to read as much as possible about CBD and its healing properties,” says Joe Gagnon, CEO of Performance Tea. “There are many good resources online. It is also helpful to become part of a community of like-minded people who are using plant-based and natural products to help with performance and recovery. CBD and other products like it are best understood when they are tried and tested.” Over at Floyd’s of Leadville, the marketing team is convinced that knowledge is power and has made a point of creating several target marketing materials for

various disciplines, including running, cycling and other active lifestyles. The brand incorporates CBD education throughout its website as well as in emails, blog posts and social media, and would like to see retailers do the same. Skyler Bissell, CEO and cofounder of Oleo, concurs that reputable retailers serve a critical role in educating and building trust with consumers, and he refers to a “virtuous cycle” that will help fuel the CBD category for the next few years. “There is a correlation between retailer trust and consumers. As more consumers try the products and feel more comfortable, they’ll buy more, prompting more retailers to carry the product which in turn will draw more consumers, and so on,” he explains. “The cycle will continue for about the next five years. We’re only just seeing large, reputable retailers carrying CBD products, so we’re still at the very early stages.” Furthermore, he advises retailers to think about how CBD offerings fit with their demographic and choose accordingly. For example, some hemp products contain small amounts of THC, but for many athletes this is not a desirable ingredient, so retailers should choose THC-free options. The Future of CBD

Many brands believe that once the regulatory issues are settled, the CBD market will advance quickly, spurred by an influx of larger companies that will drive both consolidation and growth. “There’s a place for CBD in the long haul,” says Filip Keuppens, VP–global sales and marketing at The Pickle Juice Company. “The field will be winnowed out

over the next 12 months or so, similar to what happened with coconut water a couple of years ago. CBD’s growth will depend on the rate at which it’s accepted at mass national retailers.” Oleo’s Bissell agrees: “There’s a trend towards people wanting to have control over their fitness and well-being. Over the next couple of years CBD will make huge inroads into the American market. We’re likely to see CBD products across all retail channels, similar to the broader dietary supplement category.” He predicts that three to five years from now we’ll see more involvement from major consumer packaged goods and pharmaceutical companies, which will lead to more proliferation and expanding distributions. “We also expect a full and clear regulatory structure to appear in the next 12 to 18 months. Once this happens, the category will accelerate with mainstream acquisitions, mergers and product launches from big companies.” Like his compatriots from other CBD companies, Evan DeMarco, CMO and science officer at Omax Health, is convinced of CBD’s financial and medicinal potential, but decries the fact that “everyone who’s trying to make a buck is getting in on it.” He concludes, “It’s a very exciting time, but I can’t wait for the epic consolidation that’s to come. There is a real place in sports nutrition for CBD products, but retailers need to know what they’re putting on their shelves and what they’re giving customers.” n © 2019 Diversified Communications

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The Muscle MX Activate Stick, for use prior to activity, is designed to relieve pain while stimulating blood flow to increase mobility. The Recovery Stick is an ultra-cooling topical that helps relieve acute and chronic pain post-activity (SRP $39.99 each).

Oleo powdered CBD drink mixes combine the benefits of 25mg of CBD per serving with functional ingredients such as freeze-fried coconut water and real rooibos and black tea, available with or without caffeine (SRP $19.99 for 6 ct. Coconut mix; $24.99 for Original Mix jar).

Omax Health Cryofreeze CBD Roll-On delivers cooling relief by blocking pain receptors, reducing inflammation and improving muscle and joint flexibility (SRP $34.95). Omax Sleep + Stress Remedy combines Broad Spectrum Hemp CBD and L-Theanine with inflammation-relieving Omega 3 to improve sleep quality and reduce tension (SRP $59.95).

Performance Tea’s CBD instant teas support active lifestyles by helping to reduce inflammation and stress. Available in Recovery, Revive and Snooze formulations (SRP $49.95 each).

The Pickle Juice Company’s new CBD Shot contains 50mg of bioavailable CBD per 2.5-oz. bottle and contains no artificial ingredients, no caffeine and zero percent THC (SRP $4.99).

Venga Endurance’s Performance CBD products feature water soluble CBD that delivers five times more CBD into the bloodstream than typical CBD oil products, helping to alleviate pain, speed recovery fight inflammation, reduce stress and enhance sleep (SRP $45-$99).


© 2019 Diversified Communications



Something different. “Socks with Purpose®” is an innovative way to offer REAL pain solutions to your customer. is the brand to offer a Comprehensive Medical Grade Compression Sock Program to address Plantar Fasciitis, Bunion, Shin Splints, Achilles Tendonitis, Swelling, Heel and Arch pain…… and much more.




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running shorts Nuun Expands Investment In Female Athletes With Inaugural Nuuness Award


uun wants to empower more women to invest in movement and themselves. On Oct. 1, the sports beverage company introduced the Nuuness Award, an unrestricted cash prize of up to $2500 designed to help both professional and amateur women achieve their athletic goals. Grant winners can use the funds in any way that supports the pursuit of their athletic aspirations, such as childcare, professional coaching, transportation or athletic gear. “Nuuness seeks to provide the community support, solutions and resources that help women of all ability levels to break through their personal barriers and ultimately achieve their athletic dreams,” Nuun senior marketing manager Ashley Smith says. Applications will be accepted until Oct. 30, with winners being selected based on both need as well as the potential impact the prize money can have on the applicant’s life and athletic pursuits. The winner of the

UA Gets Intelligent Under Armour’s latest apparel innovation is a lightweight performance sweater called the Intelliknit. Designed for runners who hit the streets before work and literally run errands on the weekends, the UA Intelliknit is a comfortable, fashion-forward, crew-neck sweater. It is made with high-tech Japanese yarn that traps body heat to keep the wearer warm on the coldest days, but also offers breathability during a run. The sweat-wicking and odor-resistant properties of the material mean runners can wear the sweater during a run and keep it on afterward — and no one will be able to tell that they just broke a sweat. The sweater is constructed on a microscopic level to make it as 22

inaugural Nuuness Award will be announced in November.

The Nuuness Award represents Nuun’s latest effort to elevate and inspire female athletes. Nuun has continued to ink sponsorship deals with female athletes such as World Champion steeplechaser Emma Coburn and earlier this year added pregnancy protections to its sponsorship contracts while calling upon other athletic companies to do the same. Nuun also built an online platform, the aptly titled Nuuness, where women in sport connect through their shared love for “muuvement.” While Nuun leaders have not announced the Nuuness Award’s next application period, they have expressed hope that the grant program evolves into a quarterly initiative. “There are many women in sport who, for a variety of reasons, are not able to devote the time and energy they want to their training. We wanted to provide a catalyst for greater achievement and give back to the incredibly supportive community of Nuunesses everywhere,” Nuun CEO Kevin Rutherford says. n

lightweight as possible. The reflective bands on the sleeves keep runners safe on early morning and late night runs. UA Intelliknit is available now for $100 at

OS1st Hires Gouveia OS1st has named Carmel Gouveia as western regional sales manager. Gouveia, an award-winning footwear sales executive with more than 35 years of industry experience, will further focus OS1st’s commitment to its independent specialty retail partners. Beginning with Nordstrom retail, over the succeeding years she worked as a territory manager for Vans and Clarks of England. Immediately prior to joining OS1st Gouveia managed the SAS Italian shoe division for North America. “The western territory has become very important to OS1st and its growth. To properly support our retailers, we are excited about the addition of Carmel,” says Tommy Nason, national sales manager at OS1st. n

© 2019 Diversified Communications

running shorts Salazar Doping Ban Leads To End of Nike Oregon Project


ollowing Alberto Salazar’s fouryear ban by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) earlier this month for doping conduct, Nike has decided to end its much-heralded Oregon Project, its elite track and field training program whose goal was to make American distance running competitive on the world stage. Salazar, the sometimes controversial founder and head coach of the Nike Oregon Project, was given a four-year ban for possessing and trafficking testosterone while working at the Nike Oregon Project. The ban, which also includes endocrinologist Jeffrey Brown, reportedly stems from violations that included trafficking in testosterone, tampering with the doping control process and administering improper infusions of L-carnitine, a naturally occurring substance that converts fat into energy. Salazar, 61, has promised to appeal.


In announcing the end of the Oregon Project, Nike CEO Mark Parker wrote in a memo to Nike employees: “Team, As you know, last week I shared my thoughts on the recent USADA ruling regarding Alberto Salazar and The Oregon Project. I want to reiterate that Nike has always tried to put the athlete and their needs at the front of all our decisions. While the panel found there was no orchestrated doping, no finding that performance enhancing drugs have ever been used on Oregon Project athletes and went out of its way to note Alberto’s desire to follow all rules, unfortunately, Alberto can no longer coach while the appeal is pending. This situation, along with ongoing unsubstantiated assertions, is a distraction for many of the athletes and is compromising their ability to focus on their training and competition needs. I have therefore made the decision to wind down the Oregon Project. We will

“I want to reiterate that Nike has always tried to put the athlete and their needs at the front of all our decisions. While the panel found there was no orchestrated doping, no finding that performance enhancing drugs have ever been used on Oregon Project athletes and went out of its way to note Alberto’s desire to follow all rules, unfortunately, Alberto can no longer coach while the appeal is pending.” MARK PARKER, CHAIRMAN, NIKE

help all of our athletes in this transition as they choose the coaching set up that is right for them. And, as we have said, we will continue to support Alberto in his appeal as a four-year suspension for someone who acted in good faith is wrong.” Nike has funded the Oregon Project since 2001 through a $460 million 26-year sponsorship deal with US Track and Field. Among the U.S. runners who had their best performances while members of the Oregon Project are Galen Rupp, a two-time Olympic medalist (10,000 meters and the marathon); Kara Goucher, a world silver medalist at 10,000 meters; Matthew Centrowitz, the 2016 Olympic 1500-meter champion; Dathan Ritzenhein, a former U.S. record holder at 5000 meters; and Jordan Hasay, the second fastest U.S. female marathoner in history. At the recent IAAF World Championships, Donavan Brazier won the 800-meter title in an American record of 1:42.34. Ritzhenhein and Goucher reportedly became two whistleblowers in the case against Salazar once they had left the team. To date, no Oregon Project athletes have tested positive for a banned performance-enhancing drug. n

© 2019 Diversified Communications

Deadline for Big Pitch Ideas is October 25 Retailers can win $5000 in Big Pitch Competition at The Running Event in Austin in December.


ften times, it is the bigger stores who grab most of the marketing dollars from brands, but Brooks, Balega, BodyGlide and Amphipod are sponsoring a program at The Running Event that will open up $9000 in marketing money to smaller stores. The Big Pitch is a “Shark Tank-like” competition for retailers where the winning store will receive $5000 for a promotional campaign to drive younger customers to their stores. The Big Pitch is open to stores with sales of less than $2 million annually. To enter The Big Pitch competition, stores need to submit entries of 350 words or less that say how they would use the prize money

to drive a new younger consumer into their stores. Entries should be submitted to http:// The deadline for submissions is Friday, October 25, 2019. “This contest was created to support stores who may not typically receive marketing support and to have retailers share ideas in a fun format that will inspire other stores to come up with similar promotions,” says Matt Weiss of Brooks, who developed the idea. Three finalists will be selected from all entries received and will get to “pitch” their ideas on stage Tuesday, December 3 at 4 p.m. to a distinguished panel of judges from the sponsoring companies. Each of the retailers who are finalists in

the competition will receive five minutes to make their pitch and then be questioned by the judges. The three finalist retailers can use Pitch decks of up to three slides. Props and costumes are also allowed if they support the presentation of the idea. The judges for the competition will be: • Matt Weiss of Brooks. • Bert Pictor of Balega. • Bill Sternoff of BodyGlide. • June Angus of Amphipod. The winning store will receive $5000 to execute their idea; Second place will receive $3000 and third place will receive $1500. Winners will be announced at The Industry Awards dinner on Thursday, December 5, 2019 at The Hilton Austin. n


To get the answers to these and other questions, The Running Event has assembled an all-star panel, The ABCs of CBD, which will take place Tuesday, December 3 from 2:30 p.m, - 3:15 p.m. at the Austin Convention Center.


A ll ret a il e r s at te n din g the T R E Conference are eligible to attend.

Speakers include: • Tim Gordon Chief Science Officer of EndoSport by Functional Remedies. • Floyd Landis, former professional cyclist and founder of Floyd’s Of Leadville. • Evan DeMarco, product innovator of Omax Health. n

For a full TRE conference agenda, visit: To register for The Running Event visit: 24

© 2019 Diversified Communications

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DECEMBER 3–5, 2019 • AUSTIN, TEXAS Produced by

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