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The Essential Holiday Gift Guide for Fitness Buffs
In honor of the holidays, Greatist has picked 20 fitness-inspired gifts we’d love to unwrap this festive season. Some of these puppies come at a pretty high price, but they’re worth it — and if nothing else, they’re fun to drool over. (Note: We weren’t paid or perked in any way for including these items.) This is a list of gifts The Greatist Team picked out just because we like them.
Fitbit-Zip Activity Tracker This itty-bitty activity tracker monitors steps, distance, and calories burned, then wirelessly syncs the stats to a computer or smartphone. The device gets social, too — challenge friends, set goals, and earn badges to make activity fun. Compared to other trackers, it's discreet and light-weight; pop it in a pocket to track activities without announcing it to the world. Price: $60
Body Media Fit Arm Band Tracker This nifty gadget is meant for the truly dedicated health tracker: It includes more tracking capabilities than nearly any other tracker on the market. In addition to the armband monitor that measures quantity of sleep and physical activity (not to mention tons of other metrics like steps taken, calories burned, and the quality of sleep and activity), there’s an online manager with an easy-to-use food log and charts that show weight changes and calorie balance. A Bluetooth-capable version is available for an extra price; it can be synced up to a Smartphone for real-time tracking. Price (sans Bluetooth): $100
Jawbone UP Tracker This tracker is unique in that it takes a holistic approach to health and wellness tracking. It monitors both movement and sleep, and the free app lets users keep track of meals and mood. This little guy is water resistant, cordless (it plugs right into a computer), and has a battery that won't run out of juice for ten days. Even though it keeps track of so much, the bracelet is smaller — and much more chic — than other monitors. Price:$130
Striiv Play Wireless Smart Pedometer This pedometer motivates users by turning the number of steps taken each day into a game or a competition with friends. The first pedometer to ever feature a walking game on its screen, Striiv encourages users to stay fit by racking up steps in order to move on to the game's next level. And at no extra cost to the user, Striiv and its corporate partners donate to charity each time a person reaches a certain number of steps. Price: $100 - $200
Hugger Mugger Yoga Blanket For the dedicated yogi, a good blanket is often a must — but anyone who's ever gone to a yoga class knows the scratchy, smelly versions all too well. These eco-friendly, chemical-free blankets are soft to the touch and less likely to irritate sensitive skin. They're great for keeping warm during savasana and provide ample support for the shoulders during inversions (without all that itch). Price: $26
Jade Yoga Mat The yoga mat: Another yogi must-have. There are approximately 9 kajillion brands selling mats, and many of them are far cheaper than this one. What makes the Jade mat worth the price is its durability, eco-friendliness (it's made entirely of natural rubber in the U.S.), and cushy, virtually slip-proof surface. The mat also comes in different weights, widths, and thicknesses to suit any yogi's preference. Price: $55 - $120
Puretoes They look a little like flippers, but this non-skid footwear is designed to enhance yoga, pilates, martial arts, and dance. Where other grippy footwear can be thick and cumbersome, these lightweight puppies provide a non-slip grip that won't come between the wearer and their mat. Price: $20
To Rev Up A Workout
TRX Rip Trainer This gift is small but mighty. The kit includes a Rip Trainer with a medium resistance cord, basic training Instant video download, a reference guide, foam door anchor, and nylon carrying bag. Training with a rip trainer can help improve core strength, flexibility, and endurance. Price: $190
Gopher SandBells These marvels are a cross between dumbbells, kettlebells, and medicine balls, bringing together the best of each of these workout tools. SandBells are sturdy but stretchy and soft, making for a safer training tool than a traditional iron dumbbell. Toss ‘em, lift ‘em, and grip ‘em for a challenging workout suitable for any body. Those looking to save on shipping costs can buy the bags sand-free and fill them up at home. Price: starting at $10
FitDesk Much less expensive than other bikes of its kind, this compact desk is designed to get users moving while making calls, working, or trolling the internet. Not only is it cheaper, but this desk/bike model is much smaller (it folds up!) than other workable activity stations. Price: $250
Trigger Point Foam Roller Though these look kind of like a pool noodle’s big brother, they pack a much bigger health punch. The Trigger Point has earned a reputation as one of the best foam rollers on the market thanks to its light weight, durability (it's designed to withstand repeated heavy use for a minimum of one year without breaking down), and its special "Distrodensity Zone," a matrix of varying widths and densities designed to provide a precise massage. Users can roll out sore muscles for just 10 to15 minutes a day for injury prevention and an increased range of motion. Price: $40
Surefoot Foot Rubz Runners and athletes will be thrilled to get a tiny massage — for free! (After you buy it of course.) While the old standby for soothing tired feet is a tennis or golf ball, this little guy gets deep into painful spots with its little nubs. It relaxes worn out feet in under ten minutes and is small and light enough to take on the road. Price: $10
Jacked Pack Gift the beefcakes on your list with the ultimate “get huge” gift box to recover after a serious workout. Each one-, three-, or six-month subscription houses ever-changing sports nutrition goodies like supplement samples, protein brownies, or protein cereal. Price: $10-$25
Under Armour Mini Headbands These slim headbands make the perfect stocking stuffer. Thanks to the grippy silicone logos and moisture-wicking material, they effectively keep back sweaty, frizzy hair during a workout. (Secret: Not just for women!) Price: $10
Hylete Clothing This apparel is perfect for some serious sweating. The tees, tanks, shorts, hoodies, and tights are super soft, conform to the body while it moves, and effectively wick away sweat. They’re technically made for the cross-training athlete, but can be used for any activity (including lounging). Price: $30 - $60
W8FIT Weighted Workout Clothes While other weighted clothing often resembles a bullet-proof vest, this line of weighted apparel looks like normal athletic wear. Made specifically for women, these weighted tops and bottoms add extra resistance training to a workout or daily activities like grocery shopping. They come in two weight sizes (¼ pound or ½ pound) with the option to add more weight as fitness improves. Price:$52 - $86
SmartWool Touch Screen Gloves No need to stop running outside during the winter months. These gloves are thin enough to be flexible but (thanks to Merino wool) warm enough to wear out in the cold. The coolest feature is the knit-in touch-screen capability on the thumb and forefingers, which makes it easy to manage workout apps and change songs without exposing hands to the elements. Price: $15 - $20
BlenderBottle SportMixer Most protein and supplement shakers aren’t all that nice looking (sorry, bottles), but the SportMixer blends up shakes and drinks in a bottle that’s as trendy as it is functional. Unlike many of its competitors, the BlenderBottle boasts a sturdy grip (sweaty-hand approved), an odor-resistant interior, a leak-proof seal, and BPA-free construction. Price: $11
The Run Lock It's more expensive than a traditional hide-a-key, but it's cheaper than buying a new car (and more comfortable than shoving a key in a sports bra or sweaty sock). For runners, hikers, and casual walkers alike, the run lock is the very best tool for … well, not getting the car stolen (or losing its keys). Pop the car keys inside the tiny compartment and lock it on the car door handle while hitting the trails or track. Price: $35
JayBird JF3 Freedom Stereo Bluetooth Earbuds These earbuds are made with the athlete in mind. They're lightweight, cordless, and have enhanced microphones for easy listening (even with the elliptical's hum in the background). Thanks to their secure fit, the buds stay in place and remain comfortable even during high-intensity exercise. The on-ear controls allow the user to manage volume and pick up phone calls without getting tangled up in a cord. Price: $90
Surf Shelf Laptop Holder While treadmill desks can run upwards of $2,000, this small shelf is convenient, economical, and gets the job done. Just pop it on a treadmill, elliptical, or bike (it's designed to fit 99 percent of 'em) and rest a laptop or tablet on top to get active while working, reading, or watching shows on Netflix. The shelf is designed with flexibility in mind: It folds up to fit into a gym bag and takes just a minute to install on a new machine. Price: $40
What did we miss? What fitness-inspired gifts would you like to receive this holiday season? Let us know in the comment section below, or tweet the author @nicmcdermott.
Disclosure: All affiliate links on Greatist highlight products the team has either reviewed or thinks are kick-ass. Greatist's editorial team is completely removed from the business side, which handles these fancy links.