2016 Holiday Shopping Guide

I’m not a very good gift shopper… I always think, I’d love to get my family/friends thoughtful and meaningful things. And then the holidays get closer and I freak out and give everyone a gift card. But I’m good at thinking of things I like! So I figure… maybe some other runners want these things too!


Winter means I work during all daylight hours. So running frequently takes place in the dark. So I’m a big fan of illumination, both in terms of helping increase your visibility to others and helping you be able to see better.

So, to make yourself more visible my favorite option is my Halo Belt. I backed this project on Kickstarter and wear it every dark morning when out running. I’ve also worn it in several Ragnar Relay events and other participants are always yelling to ask me about who makes my cool belt. In fact, people have stopped me while out running my neighborhood streets to ask about it. It can be a solid glow or a blinking light and it’s rechargeable so you don’t have to worry about constantly burning through batteries.

Halo Belt

Sometimes you need lights to help you see in front of you. I’m really not a fan of headlamps. I feel like I can never get them positioned just right, they move around and I can’t point them in the direction I need sometimes. But KnuckleLights are pretty awesome for this and the new versions are rechargeable. (I have the old battery version and should probably upgrade.) Plus if you buy some from the KnuckleLights website and use code: YKAF5533 you can get 10% off!

Use code YKAF5533 for 10% off.
Use code YKAF5533 for 10% off.

Training Journal

The Believe training journals that Lauren Fleshman and Roisin McGettigan-Dumas have put together are beautiful books. They have an embossed cover and a ribbon bookmark inside, but the pages are filled with tips and inspiration and plenty of blank space to record your goals/training. I bought one of these to use in 2016, then when my marathon training earlier this year fell apart I stopped using it though. So now I have a pretty journal that is 1/3 used. I could pick it up again, the journals aren’t pre-dated for you. But there’s part of me that is mad at 2016 and wants to start fresh.

If you want something not exclusively for running, JournalMenu has a bunch of options for triathlon, yoga, CrossFit and more (including running!). These are fun because you can create one with a customized cover to make it uniquely your own. I’m actually thinking I might buy one of the day planners from this company because I use a day planner on my desk at work. I keep notes from phone calls and meetings on each day because scribbling with a pen is still faster than typing when in meetings or on the phone.

Safety Assists

I reviewed the Revolar recently and I was impressed with it. If you don’t want to read the entire review, basically it’s a way to send a notification to family/friends with a push of a button if you are in a troublesome situation. Quicker than pulling out your phone, also less conspicuous. Plus it’s small, easy to slip in a pocket on shorts/vest/wherever.


I don’t have a Go Guarded, but I’ve heard positive things about it and I am putting this on my list because it seems easier than carrying any other weapons. It slips on your finger like a ring, but can be used to help defend yourself if the need arises. I hate thinking about these scenarios too much, but safety is something we all need to consider, especially female runners.

Go Guarded

Training Tools

For anyone like me who doesn’t have a gym membership and doesn’t have spare time to drive to fitness classes but wants to get some diversity in life, I just learned about the BeFit Channel add-on with Amazon (no Prime needed). It’s got a bunch of different fitness classes/series in different areas from yoga, pilates, barre to strength training and cardio. This looks like a cool supplement for those looking to add some cross-training options to their routine or for those who just need a completely new fitness routine in the privacy of their home. It starts with a 7-day free trial and then costs $6.99/ month.

BeFit Amazon Channel

Those who are prone to shin splints would benefit from using a Shintekk. I like to use it to try keeping my legs strong for shin splint prevention. You can read my whole review on the Shintekk.


Specialty programs to improve running might be a good gift to give yourself. I’ve been really impressed with both RunnersConnect and The Run Experience. They’re different focuses from each. RunnersConnect has programs on marathon nutrition, strength training for runners and form. TRE has programs to help you build a better structure with your running routine, training for specific distances, and weekly running tuneup. You really can’t go wrong with either option.

Time & Support

The biggest thing that I want, and I imagine most runners would want, is time to get their run done! Soon it will be a new year and my CPA husband will be working around the clock and I have to squish in my running where I can. But it would really be nice to have somebody say, “Why don’t you just take the time to go run for as long as you want? I’ll take care of dinner/kid/dog/whatever and you enjoy yourself. When do you want to do this? You even have time to eat/stretch/shower after running.” A support system makes running goals a lot easier to accomplish.

What’s on your holiday list? To give or to receive? 

Practical, yet sure-to-be appreciated, gifts for runners.

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