My Pick of The Best Xmas Gifts For Runners
If the loved one in your life is a runner then I’ve got some great news for you. Buying them a gift this Christmas will be easy.
Runners love all things to do with their sport. Steer clear of buying them a pair of trainers as that’s quite personal and depends on running style and fit. Apart from that you have carte blanche!
However, it’s easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of products that are available. From shorts and tshirts to socks and hats, accessories, books and gadgets. How do you decide what to go for?
I’ve had a good look at what’s around this year and I have put a short list together to help you narrow the field. Plump for one or more of these gifts and you won’t go wrong. If you’re thinking of taking up running yourself in the New Year then you might want to treat yourself too!
1. Suunto Ambit2
This is the new big thing in GPS watches. If you are already immersed in running then Garmin is almost synonymous with wristwear. However, that is about to change. Watches are getting smarter and asthetically more pleasing!
The Ambit2 isn’t a chunky watch, it has more of a traditional look about it. But traditional this ain’t. This bit of kit is packed full of features such as GPS navigation, speed metrics, heart rate, altitude, weather conditions and other features specific to running, cycling and swimming. On top of that you can download Suunto Apps which provide additional functionality. Want to compare your kilometere laps or chase a ‘ghost runner’? Perhaps you want to know what your marathon end time will be based on your current run? This fibre glass gadget will tell you all. And, if running turns to triathlon (the fastest growing participant sport in the UK) this watch will count your swimming laps, tell you your stroke rate and give you information on your power output on the bike. It also tells the time!!
With all this functionality packed in, or available as apps to add on, you would expect this to be a pricey bit of kit. It is. The RRP of the pictured Black HR is £410.00 although Suunto Marketplace are currently promoting it at a reduced price of £270.00. This is a ‘while stocks last’ promo so you probably shouldn’t hang around.
2. Jersey Pocket – Organic Cold Pressed Bars
I’m a great believer in, where possible, supporting independent brands and businesses. It makes sense. In sport you’ll usually find that the independent businesses are run by passionate people who are themselves immersed in the sport they are attached to.
Jersey Pocket are one such company. I came across them through cycling rather than running but that doesn’t matter too much as their bars are for all active folk.
These flavoursome energy bars are full of real food and suitable for those requiring gluten free, vegetarian and diabetic safe foods. There are loads of energy bars available. the market is full of them. The difference with these is that a) they genuinely taste lovely and b) they were born out of a home kitchen where the chap who came up with the idea (Richard) did so because he needed to find something that would fuel his long cycle rides.
Visit their website now and you can buy a Christmas Box which comes with a special seasonal bar for £10. I guarantee any runner, cyclist or similarly sporty friend or relative will love this.
I love these. Not only are they a cool accessory in that everyone you meet will want one, you’ll also find that you wear it even when your not running. Ok, so it’s an identity bracelet, did that just make it uncool? No, because you can have almost anything you want engraved on it. So, you can have your name and an ICE (In Case of Emergency) contact number on it. You could go for your NHS number, blood type, Running club name, allergies and much more.
Available in sizes to fit children as well as adults and a choice of 6 colours. Just in case you think a bracelet wouldn’t be well received you can also buy shoe tags which attach to all running shoe laces! A definite thumbs up for the Christmas stocking as the bracelets start just at £9.95 on the Tagnix website
4.Running Medal Display
People run for all sorts of different reasons but when all is said and done we love our medals. However, if your like me they are probably hanging from various door handles and bedknobs around the house.
This problem is easily solved and in a way that means you can remind yourself daily of your great achievements. The Runners Wall has a great range of medal displays from the simple and understated to the more stand out models with quotes and inspiration adorning them. They can be customised and you can even get them made with a name on to really give the personal touch. Available in sport specific ranges too so suitable for all. Of course, if you don’t have enough medals to hang up on these displays you will just have to enter more races!
A personal favourite of mine. Energy drinks, like energy bars, are all over the place. The big supermarkets and your local pharmacy are now stocking all kinds of gels, shakes, juices, tablets etc All of them promise and promote similar outcomes.
The difference, the BIG difference with Elivar products is that they have been developed specifically for the over 35’s. This is unique. Why does age matter? The body changes over time and our nutritional requirements change as we get older. Elivar’s range of products deliver the right amount of important vitamins and proteins to help fuel our running (or any other sporting activity). I’m not into the science of running as much as I should be so I can’t tell you for sure why this works but it just does. I tried lots of other drinks before I found Elivar. What I usually found was that I got bloated, the product didn’t taste very nice, it was gritty or it just didn’t work.
Elivar has a range of powders which are added to water to quickly and easily make juices and shakes. The range is broken down into Prepare, Endure and Recover – they all do what they say. There is also a new addition, Hydrate Plus.
This is another independent company whose products were born out of a passion for cycling, fuelling and recovering. All products are available individually but there is a great Weekend Endurance package to buy for just £9.99. This includes 2 packets each of Endure, Recover and Hydrate Plus, great to try out before committing to buy bigger tubs, which you will want to buy once you experience the effects.
6. PS-H8 Prosafe Headlight
If you’re into running then chances are, at this time of year, you’ll be doing a certain amount of running in the dark. If that’s the case then the importance of seeing where you are going cannot be overstated. The risk of injuring yourself increases vastly when you can’t see what’s in front of you.I also believe that being visible is very important. This exceptional product may save you from injury, it may save your life, it will certainly make running in the dark an enlightening experience.
Attached to elasticated webbing, which is very comfortable, the main LED light unit is adjustable for angle and also range. You can turn the light from dim to ultra bright and also have it on strobe mode which I assume is best for rave’s or for seeing off attackers!
The battery pack, which sits at the back of the headband has a red LED which can be either static or flashing and will certainly help you to be seen from behind.
My full review is HERE This will be a very well recieved gift and leaves no excuses for not going out running ‘because it’s too dark’. I also wear it when cycling in the dark for extra safety. See Unilite Website for information on where to buy
Happy Christmas and Happy Running!!