It’s that time of year again. We’re scouring Amazon, looking for gift inspirations to please that hard-to-buy person on our list. Between the reviews and bazillions of best idea lists, it is overwhelming. While that hedgehog tea infuser you gave Aunt Claire last year was uniquely unique, it found it’s way to the thrift store within months. If Aunt Claire happens to be a runner, or anybody else on your list, I’m here to help ensure that no regifting occurs with anything you wrap this year. Below are 8 easy-on-the-budget gift ideas for the runner on your Christmas list.
Runner’s World subscription – I’m secretly hoping someone from my family reads this post. For the past several years I subscribed to this magazine, but during our recent move it quietly stopped arriving. I miss it. Whether one has just started venturing off the couch or is a hardcore ultra-marathoner, this magazine has something of value for you – human interest stories, product reviews, training tips, nutrition advice, and a whole lot more. Do it! With a few simple keystrokes, you’ll make the recipient of this gift very happy month after month.
Balega socks – starts with the shoes, but the socks complete the necessary package. Most runners are picky about their socks, but when you land on one you like, it’s like music to your feet. For years, I was a wearer of Thorlo socks. I still love Thorlo and own several pairs, but this year while training for the NYC marathon, I purchased a few pairs of Balega socks. I like them higher on my ankle and I need them with cushioning in all the right places. This seamless sock delivered. After 26.2 miles I had NO blisters. I was sold before that, but now I’m a huge fan. They come in different heights, varying thicknesses and even different fibers.
Spibelt – Many runners run with their phones. I’ve tried several different arm bands and when I recently upgraded to an iPhone 7, my current band no longer fit. And, I was tired of fumbling with it on my arm to adjust my music or tracker. Thanks to my running coach Kyle Kranz, he recommended the Spibelt. I can’t believe it took me this long to find something that works well. It easily snaps around your waist/hip area and it doesn’t bounce around. It’s roomy enough for your phone, some gel packs and even your keys.
Spring Energy gel – You may think giving someone a few packs of energy gel is a nonsensical gift, but not for a runner. I thank my running coach for this discovery as well. Spring Energy gel is made with all-natural ingredients so it’s healthier and it doesn’t mess with your gut. As a runner who has GI issues, and I know I’m not alone, this one provides a needed boost and doesn’t boost things inside in the wrong way, if you know what I mean. I ordered this pack on Amazon. It would wrap up nicely and make a perfect little gift.
Nike Epic Lux Running Crops – This is the spendiest idea I’m sharing, but act now as they are on sale for a super reasonable price. I love these tights. They feel like a second skin when I wear them. I like the thickness, and they give me the assurance that everything will hold in place. Yes, this item is specifically for female runners, and since I’m female, I’m not in the position to recommend a male equivalent. Sorry, but I’d like to think you’ll thank me for not recommending something I’m not qualified to endorse.
Nuun – Nuun makes a handful of hydration products that contain electrolytes and vitamins. The tablets, that you drop in water, come in these cool cylinders that are environmentally friendly. I usually put Nuun in my water bottle and sip it before a run, and then hydrate with it afterwards. I love it because it gives me the hydration boost I need and it doesn’t hurt my stomach. Full disclosure: I’m a 2017 Nuunbassador. I don’t receive any product for being chosen, but get to be part of an amazing tribe of individuals who exercise and believe in Nuun products. A cylinder or two of these would make a perfect stocking stuffer gift, and the cylinders repurpose well. I use mine to carry aspirin in my purse.
Pedicure – Running can take a toll on one’s feet, especially for distance runners. Callouses, blisters, black toenails – they all happen. Getting a pedicure after a hard run or race is heavenly. Every city and town have places for pedicures, and they all offer gift certificates. Caution: the gift of a pedicure may result in a hug or two.
Epsom Salts – I had never soaked with Epsom salts until this year. As I trained for the marathon, I had soreness in places I hadn’t experienced before, and injuries that emerged without warning. Soaking in Epsom salts was a welcome retreat. I learned that when I soaked it soothed sore muscles, released toxins and had all sorts of medicinal qualities. I’m now a believer! Ginger and Clay is my favorite. The smell alone is soothing. If you get into a pinch on Christmas Eve, it’s good to know that even grocery stores carry Epsom salts!
Now it’s time for you to stride right out to your nearest store, or run to your laptop and get started on securing some perfect gift items for the runners on your list. I wish you a safe and speedy shopping journey!