Holiday Gift Guide for Runners 2019
As a serious runner myself, I don’t like the idea of gifting apparel because between size, fit, and style, it’s really a personal decision on the runner’s part. It’s annoying to have someone give you gear with the best of intentions, only to realize it’s non-returnable and doesn’t fit you well. So all of these options are pretty one-size-fits-most (with socks, you may have to make an educated guess but you get the idea.)
DIY a Foot Care Kit
Combine any of these items together in the big basin for foot soaking and you have the ultimate runner footcare kit of things that are all actually useful to runners, with none of the BS fancy crap that usually comes in a pre-packaged pedicure kit. I tried to find aesthetically pleasing options and cuter colors so the gift doesn’t come off totally utilitarian, but of course, adjust as needed!
- Soaking basin ($9)
- Epsom salts ($4)
- Lacrosse balls (for massage) ($10)
- Pumice stone ($9)
- Toe Separators ($9)
- Optional: nail polish—for runners, I like a really dark color to hide black toenails! (I always go for OPI’s black nail polish, but I love this dark purple too)
Shred Girls Towel
For those remote runs where your runner really needs to get changed after their training, or for post race wipe downs/immediate ‘I need to lie down’ moments, have a towel on hand. I love the Shred Girls towel because a) the black is perfect for muddy races and b) proceeds from any Shred Girls merch go towards keeping the lights on at Shred-Girls.com and bringing tons of free content for young female cyclists. Pair it with this awesome ($10) camp shower for a full post-race cleanup kit and you’re good to go!
Best Books for Runners
I decided to do this as a list, since we’ve read so many great ones in the last year with the Athletic Bookworms. Take a peek at the notes and highlights from my favorites and see which suits your runner the best!
- ‘NORTH’ by Jenny + Scott Jurek
- Chris McDougall ‘Running with Sherman’
- ‘Let Your Mind Run’ by Deena Kastor
- ‘Mindful Running’ by MacKenzie Havey
- ‘The Brave Athlete’ by Simon Marshall and Lesley Paterson
- ‘Natural Born Heroes’ by Chris McDougall
Travel Shoe Dryer
I’ll list this one over and over again because very few people will get it for themselves, but it’s a total trip/race saver. If you’re in a hotel frantically trying to dry shoes after pre-running a course, or back at a (electricity-having) campsite after a long day of hiking, it is SO nice to be able to ensure that your shoes are dry and ready the next day. And it can also run on your car’s cigarette lighter, WHAT!?!?! This is perfect for runners, cyclists, hikers, literally ANY outdoors type, and the travel option takes up no space.
- Get it here
CEP Crew Socks
The only concession I’ll make to runner clothing is the Christmas cliche of socks. I’ve loved CEP’s compression socks—just the ankle high, not full calves—for running for years now and I do think they’re a good option for something that most runners won’t get themselves (they’re around $19/pair), but make a big difference to run comfort. GREAT for frequent flyers too, since they keep your feet from swelling a ton on long flights.
- Get them here
The Athlete’s Guide to Sponsorship
Know a runner who’s trying to make it as a pro? My latest book might be the perfect stocking stuffer, since it’s packed with info on the care and keeping of sponsors, in a no-BS voice of experience from years behind the scenes in the pro endurance sport world.