While most people balk at the thought of going on a gentle jog, runners are a rare breed who find themselves at their happiest when they’re pounding the pavement and getting their heart rate going. Sure, it’s a simple and repetitive action that defies what outsiders deem to be reasonable, but it’s in the sheer monotony of the process that you can reap the greatest reward: mindfulness. If you’re willing to push past that initial wall of pain and silence those creeping doubts, running can be a truly meditative activity. Just you, your shoes, and the road ahead. It’s quite poetic.
That being said, if your gear is constantly getting in the way, it gets to be considerably more difficult to achieve that level of zen. Whether it’s because of poor fitting shorts, shifting socks, or flat-feeling shoes, if something’s not right, you’re going to know. But let’s face it. It requires an immense amount of dedication to run in the first place, so it’s going to take a lot for a runner to replace their gear on their own. Lucky for you, the holidays are just around the corner, and they make for an excellent opportunity to give them something that they’ll put to use. So have a look and see what we’ve picked for the best gifts for the runner.
lululemon Pace Breaker Shorts
After your shoes, a pair of well-fitting shorts are the most important part of any runner’s wardrobe. The Pace Breaker Shorts from lululemon are made with a four-way stretch fabric that’s lightweight and sweat-wicking, allowing you to stay comfortable and chafe-free.
Whether you’re someone who’s always left with a bit much lace or someone who struggles to keep their shoes tied, these elastic straps are a simple but effective item that you’ll appreciate on every run.
Runaway Mag Los Angeles Issue
Part independent travel magazine, part outlet for creative expression, Runaway Mag is an aesthetically pleasing print publication that highlights running communities around the world. If you’re looking for something that’ll inspire you to get out there and get after it, be sure to give this one a look.
Science In Sport Energy Gel Variety Pack
As you up the mileage on your weekend long runs, it becomes all the more important to stay properly fueled. These isotonic energy gels from Science In Sport contain 22g of carbohydrates to help avoid the dreaded “bonk”. But the best part is that they go down easily without water.
Swiftwick National Parks Collection
A quality pair of socks will stay in place, keep your feet dry, and, as a result, prevent painful blisters. Swiftwick’s VISION socks come with a seamless toe and some moderate cushioning, ensuring your feet stay fresh and your runs are free of irritation.
Ultraspire Iso Versa 2.0 Handheld
With gas stations and other public places being a questionable proposition given the current state of the world, it’s become all the more important that you stay self-sufficient when you’re out and about. This handheld comes with a cinch-down strap for a secure, slosh-free fit — no gripping necessary.
lululemon Run For It All Neckwarmer
Neckwarmers are a gamechanger in any outdoor activity once the temperature starts to drop. This one from lululemon is made from brushed fleece fabric with strategically placed perforations over the nose and mouth, ensuring that you stay warm with plenty of room to breathe.
Ciele GoCap Standard
Ciele has quickly burst onto the scene as one of the “in” running brands. Their 5-panel GOCap is made from reprieve, a recycled performance fiber that allows it to be lightweight, packable, and ultra-breathable. And while we’d personally have it in the pictured “Red Rocks” colorway, there are tons of options available, ensuring that you can match your cap with the rest of your kit.
lululemon Chill Chase Recovery Gloves
While your legs and lower body will continue to warm up while you run, your hands need all the help they can get. Luckily, lululemon’s Chill Chase Recovery Gloves are made with water-repellent tech fleece and a DWR coating, a winning combination that’s sure to keep them comfortable no matter how cold the weather gets.
Hoka Ora Recovery Slide
Every runner knows that training is a careful balance between forward progress and injury prevention. After you’ve finished that tough track interval workout or that grueling weekend long run, slip a pair of these babies on and treat your feet to some TLC.
lululemon Metal Vent Tech Short Sleeve 2.0
A humble t-shirt can be the difference between a refreshing run and a sodden slog. Made from 100% recycled polyester, lululemon’s Metal Vent Tech tee features a mesh construction for superior breathability and Silverescent technology for an odor-blocking defense.
Petzl Iko Core Headlamp
Although auxiliary lighting is usually reserved for the early morning crowd, even after work runners will need a way to see given how early the sun starts to set nowadays. A headlamp is a must-have item if you want to run hands-free, and this innovative model from Petzl bucks the current trends with its ultrathin AIRFIT headband.
lululemon Active Jacket
If you’re keen on keeping up with your training through the winter, you need to be prepared for the worst the weather has to offer. With its stowable hood and DWR-treated fabric, lululemon’s Active Jacket is an essential component of every runner’s closet.
Saucony Endorphin Speed
Give the gift of faster running with the Saucony Endorphin Speed. Pairing an ultralight PeBax-based PWRRUN PB midsole with a responsive nylon plate, this shoe makes speed feel effortless in everything from uptempo daily training to priority race-day performances.
Jaybird Vista True Wireless Headphones
Made to meet MIL-STD 810G, Jaybird’s Vista True Wireless Headphones have been tested to some of the strictest manufacturing requirements on the planet. What’s more, they’re incredibly high-tech, with features like lost earbud tracking and custom EQ settings to dial in your specific sound profile.
Stryd Running Power Meter
For those who are looking to maximize the effectiveness of every workout, this handy Running Power Meter from Styrd will be a welcome addition to their arsenal. It measures everything from basic pace and distance to more advanced metrics like leg spring stiffness and ground time, giving you a quantifiable measurement of your improvement.
Mission Workshop x Tracksmith Run Commute Pack
The product of a collaboration between two brands well-versed in the demands of athletic essentials, this commuter backpack is designed for maximum comfort while you’re on the move. Thanks to its height-adjustable waist and shoulder straps, as well as its internal frame sheet, you can run assured knowing it’ll stay stable and bounce-free.
District Vision Nagata Speed Blade Sunglasses
Developed by runners for runners, District Vision’s sunglasses are as stylish as they are performance-minded. But the best part is because of their shatterproof D+ lens technology and titanium core temple tips, they’re nigh-on indestructible.
Revamp your recovery practice with this handheld muscle massager from Theragun. With its advanced sound insulation and QuietForce Technology, the Elite can deliver up to 40lbs of force while making less noise than your average electric toothbrush.
Garmin Forerunner 745
If you’re looking you’re looking for the lightest, most full-featured running watch that money can buy, the Garmin Forerunner 745 is your best bet. It comes with VO2 Max measurement, race performance predicting, and running dynamics analysis — amongst a long list of other features — allowing you to keep tabs on how your training is progressing.
Nordictrack Commercial 1750 Treadmill
Sure, running outdoors is preferable to time on the treadmill, but if you really want to stay consistent from week to week, sometimes you have to bring the effort indoors. Thankfully, Nordictrack’s Commercial 1750 makes it plenty engaging, what with its endless variety of workouts and interactive personal training.
The 20 Best Home Gym Gifts
While running obviously makes up a lot of a runner’s programming, it’s also important to include some cross-training for injury prevention. Be sure to check out our guide to the best home gym gifts for some fitness-focused goods that’ll keep the runner in your life healthy, happy, and making progress.