Ooh it’s my favorite time of year… and that means, it’s time to share my ultimate running holiday gift guide! This includes a bunch of my favorite things that make me enjoy running even more… note: none of these brands know that they are included in this, these are all my own thoughts and reviews.
I bought my first Hydroflask earlier this year and it is my favorite. I love it because I really don’t love super cold water (which sounds weird) so it literally keeps it at my favorite temperature. There are so many different sizes and types, you can seriously find the one that works for your needs. Starting at $21.95.
There are so many different types of PROBARs that I love that I couldn’t just choose one. I love the Bolt for pre-run fuel, Bite for a mid-day snack and the Meal Replacement for when I just don’t have time to make a lunch before work. Starting at $2.50.
3. Brooks Running Shoes
Make any runner happy by giving them the gift of NEW SHOES. Unless you know the model and size, I would gift them a gift certificate or an IOU because running shoes are pretty personal in my opinion. Brooks Running has a great variety to fit the needs of any runner. Starting at $100.
4. Ryder Sunglasses
I found these a few years ago and LOVE. They have the best sunglasses which are essential to runners. Basically if you have a runner in your life that doesn’t wear sunglasses, you need to gift them some Ryder Sunglasses. I love the photochromatic (darken with more light) and anti-fog editions –> perfect for long runs. Starting at $50.
5. JBL Reflect Mini BT Headphones
I tried these out earlier this year and they are by far the best headphones I’ve ever worn running. They have an amazing fit and I never have to worry about them falling out — and I typically run with music only when I’m doing speedwork. Starting at $99.
6. Handful Bra
I’ve learned a LOT about sports bras this year and Handful Bras definitely fit my needs for something that has enough support for when I run and also are comfortable — so important. I love the colors and that the cups (which are removable) are so easy to put back in if they fall out during the wash. 😉 Starting at $50.
7. Honey Stinger Gels
Once upon a time, I went to run the Boston Marathon and forgot to bring any gels. This is when I first tried Honey Stinger Gels and they have been my go-to ever since. I personally prefer the caffeinated versions, but they all taste good. Starting at $1.50.
8. Ultimate Direction Handy 10
I’ve tried out a bunch of different handheld drink options (and belts) for long runs, and I’ve finally found one that I love with the Ultimate Direction Handy 10. It has the perfect fit (doesn’t hurt my hand) and also holds enough water for my long runs. Win win! Starting at $19.95.
Finding the perfect belt that doesn’t bounce or feel uncomfortable after you go mile after mile is more challenging than you think. I now own three FlipBelts because they are my favorite. Such a great fit, and you can fit so much in the pockets! As a bonus, you generally can’t tell it’s there because it all fits under your shirt. Starting at $29.
10. Nutri Ninja Pro Blender
Huh, what does this have to do with running? Smoothies, of course! Smoothies are the perfect treat for runners — whether it’s after a run for a dose of protein or for a mid-afternoon snack. And the Nutri Ninja Pro Blender is by far the best one that I’ve ever tried. Starting at $69.99.
11. Runner’s World subscription
What better for a runner than the running bible?! You can get a full annual subscription of Runner’s World for $12 for the year — so it honestly is the gift that keeps giving. Starting at $12.
12. Meb for Mortals
You guys know that I love Meb… and I definitely love his books! Meb for Mortals gives you insight into his training. I loved this book because it taught me so much about my own training after learning about what he does to run as an elite. Starting at $13.
13. Advanced Marathoning
This is by far my favorite marathon training book. Advanced Marathoning got me my first Boston qualifying time, and has helped me improve my time over the years. Highly recommend to anyone who is looking for a BQ or to improve their marathon times. Starting at $17.
14. Cascadia Jacket
This is one of my most favorite pieces of gear right now! The Cascadia Jacket is perfect to layer up and wear if it’s windy, snowing, rainy, or any other weather in between. I also think it’s stylish to wear out… when you aren’t running! Starting at $260.
15. T-shirt Quilt
So what do you do with all of those old race shirts anyways? Most of us runners have drawers overflowing with them… and a t-shirt quilt is such a great idea! You can give it a shot yourself if you’re crafty, or try a company like Race Quilts. Pricing varies.
16. Medal Hanger
Medals are cherished possessions of runners — they each tell a story and bring back memories of what we put in to (and got out of) a race. You can either get a standard design or customize it. I’ve had good luck with Allied Medal Designs, but there are a ton of different vendors out there! Pricing varies.
17. Running LED Lights
Shorter days in the winter means more runs in the dark, for both humans and their pets! I haven’t tried out these LED lights from Illumiseen, but have heard rave reviews from readers. Vests, leashes and collars will keep you and Fido safe on the run. Starting at $17.98.
18. Foam Roller
A runner’s best friend (and sometimes, biggest enemy): the foam roller. It’s essential to recovery to prevent injury and to keep your muscles happy. There are several different ones on the market, but some to check out include Trigger Point GRID and compact foam. Pricing varies.
19. Strength training classes
Runners like to run, and often times, don’t prioritize strengthening other important muscle groups. Make it a lot easier for them by gifting them some strength training classes at a local fitness studio or gym. Pricing varies.
20. A massage
I’m definitely not a massage person, but know many runners swear by massages and claim that they are essential to staying healthy while training. I believe them. Plus, who would really hate to get a gift certificate for a massage in their stocking!? Pricing varies.
21. Comped race entry
Race fees add up quick (I actually have a separate line in my budget for this), so anytime you can comp a runner a race entry? BONUS. You can either comp a race you know is on their list, or present at gift certificate. Plus, lots of races have awesome discounts going on right now before the New Year — like Tough Mudder (coupon code ToughMudderGiftUS2016 will get you 15% off). Pricing varies.
22. PRO Compression socks
I could not live without PRO Compression socks… both the tall and the short! They are perfect for keeping my legs feeling fresh throughout training and on race day. As a bonus, they come in the most creative designs! Pricing starts at $25.
23. Brooks Moving Comfort Sports Bra
Like I mentioned previously, I’ve learned a LOT about sports bras this year… and they are ESSENTIAL for women runners! And by that, I mean good quality ones like the Brooks Moving Comfort sports bras. I personally love the Juno and the UpRise Crossback Bra. Pricing starts at $38.
24. Gold Bond Friction Defense
I have been using this stuff for years… and it works! What for, you may ask? Well, chafing is a pretty big deal for runners and Gold Bond Friction Defense works its magic so you don’t have to deal with that awful pain post run. Starting at $5.
25. Kahtoola NANOspikes
When you live in a northern climate, running in snow is inevitable. Staying safe while you’re on the ice is crucial… especially if you are trying to build up mileage before spring! I love the Kahtoola NANOspikes (read my full review here) because they don’t add a ton of bulk to your shoes and they give you the grip you need on the ice. Starting at $49.95.
26. Manda Bees Headbands
Sometimes when it’s not cold enough for a hat, or too cold to go bare, I love wearing a Manda Bees Headband to keep my ears covered and happy! They are also a great fashion accent (both while running and not). Starting at $8.
27. Drift Running Gloves
I love the Drift Running Gloves from Brooks because they are versatile — you can roll back the mitten piece if it’s not that cold or windy, and keep your fingers open and ready to move. Or if it’s windy (and chilly), you can fold over the mitten piece for extra protection. The best of both worlds! Starting at $50.
28. Duel in the Sun
By far the best running book I’ve ever read, “Duel in the Sun” brings drama and inspiration. It recounts the 1982 Boston Marathon, where Alberto Salazar beat Dick Beardsley by TWO seconds. Starting at $9.99.
29. Vanilla Protein Powder
Protein is so important for runners for muscle strength and recovery. I absolutely love this vanilla protein powder (I generally start my day with two scoops!). The runner in your life will go nuts over this. 😉 Starting at $49.95.
30. SaltStick Caps
When it comes to warm weather running, SaltStick Caps are there to make sure you are getting enough electrolytes so that you are sweating efficiently. They are extremely helpful when you are planning to run longer races in hot or humid weather conditions. Starting at $21.50.
31. Run Fast Eat Slow
Shalane Flanagan just came out with her own cookbook, “Run Fast Eat Slow.” It is on my holiday wish list this year! It is filled with so many yummy recipes, designed specifically to fuel runners. Starting at $15.
32. Threshold Running Tights
Finding the right running tights makes a world of difference when you are running in cold weather. I also love to wear them on cold-weather days when I’m doing outdoor activities like skiing or sledding. I love the Threshold Running Tights because they keep your temperature where it needs to be and they have a gorgeous style aspect to it to! Starting at $95.
33. Road ID
When it comes to staying safe on the run, Road ID is an important component. They have different models, where you can include an emergency contact, allergy information and essential phone numbers. Starting at $19.99.
35. Momentum Jewelry
Sometimes you just need a little inspiration, or even a reminder why you are doing what you’re doing. I love Momentum Jewelry for this! They make a series of bracelets that are super comfortable and stylish, and feature the best inspirational phrases and sayings. Starting at $18.99.
36. Janji Altitude Tights
Perfect design, great for cold weather… what more could you want? How about the fact that with every sale of Janji Altitude Tights, they give water to someone in need? Starting at $82.
37. Marathon Race Course Art
Does your runner want to remember a favorite marathon, perhaps one where they set a huge PR or fell in love with 26.2? Marathon race course art has become more popular in recent years and I am a huge fan! There are several different companies out there that create these, but I love City Prints. Pricing varies.
The Garmin Fenix is the cadillac of all Garmins… absolutely incredible. It features bluetooth, GPS/GLONASS, advanced running dyanmics like VO2 max… and can we talk about the beautiful design? Starting at $399.
39. Burt’s Bees Lip Balm
An essential piece of the runner’s supply: lip balm. Our lips get chapped when we’re out on those long, cold runs — or runs in general! Burt’s Bees Lip Balm keeps my lips happy and soft, and plus, they come in a lot of different flavors and styles. Starting at $3.
40. Running Vests
I love love LOVE running vests. It took me awhile to get on board, but they are my favorite because they keep my core happy without overheating the rest of my body. Plus, they can be a fun way to style your outfit (important for group runs ;)). My latest favorite is the LSD Threshold from Brooks Running. Pricing varies.
There you have it! My 2016 Holiday Gift Guide. Coming soon, my non-running holiday wish list… you know, for everyone who wants to treat me to something special this year.
What would you add to the ultimate running holiday gift guide? What’s on your holiday shopping list?
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