Bond Running is meant to serve as a community hub for Toronto’s runners, selling fashion-forward running gear, coffee, and small workout snacks. Their logo is actually two intersecting tracks, the same proportions actually used for their name’s font, representing the attention to detail paid here.
Owner Steven Artemiw of Parkdale Roadrunners sets his shop apart from more conventional stores like Runner’s Room or your average Foot Locker by speaking to young runners in their own vocabulary, one that’s more unisex and design literate, and less aggressive.
This carries through in the smart design of the open, accessible, minimal space: you won’t find any garish graphics on the walls here.
The place is meant to be practical above all, even housing locker units and a shower in the back so that runners can take a quick urban jog before work, wash up, and stash their sweats for the day at Bond’s Chinatown location near plenty of workplaces.
High end brands Satisfy and Lululemon are displayed on modular shelves and racks that allow for play with the organization. The first half of the store was mostly women’s and the second mostly men’s when I visited, but Artemiw is free to change this up.
Hats like this Ciele cap sporting the phrase “run love.” ($50) are, like most everything here, so stylish they make me wonder if I actually have to love running to wear them, but practical enough to actually work out in.
Footwear encompasses everything from daily trainers to racing flats to track spikes, with an emphasis on lifestyle pieces that you actually want to wear when you’re not running.
Popular big name brands like New Balance, Nike, and Adidas are all here, a pair of New Balances hovering around $130 - $160.
Fashionable proprietary eyewear for runners is sold here, New-York-based brand District Vision ($275 - $350).
One modular bar is at the front for coffee purchases, with another at the back for ringing up apparel.
Using Reunion Island as their coffee supplier, they make it quick and easy with all espresso-based drinks with milk added like lattes, cortados and cappuccinos for $4.
Cups for here were made by ceramic artist Shakeel Rehemthullah.
Also sold here are juices from Montreal brand Loop, in flavours like King of the Hill with cantaloupe, turmeric, carrot, lime, fennel, clementine and orange, or High Achiever with grape, beet, carrot and romaine.
Other healthy nutrients come in the form of Made Good bars ($3) and items like an Endurance Tap gel that’s basically a pure maple syrup designed to fuel athletes.