The Best Holiday Gifts for Runners, Handpicked By Runners

We asked some of the best runners in the world about the gear that really makes a difference, and used their feedback to create the guide you need for all the runners in your life! We've got you covered whether you're looking for a great gift on a budget, or the game-changer that's worth splurging for.

We will be the first to admit that runners can be particular about their gear, but for good reasons. Since shopping for runners can be challenging, we’ve called in our PWR Lab Ambassadors and a few friends for reinforcement this holiday season.

From budget-friendly picks to splurge-worthy items, these gifts are sure to make every mile a little merrier. Combined, these professional athletes, NCAA champions, and World Championship Team Members have logged thousands of miles and put hundreds of pieces of equipment to the test. So when we say we’ve collected the best gear of the year – we’re not kidding.

Perfect Gifts for Runners
Best Under $50

Honey Stinger Organic Chocolate Gel

For those fueling for long runs and lengthy aerobic workouts, Vanessa Fraser of Nike’s Bowerman Track Club recommends Honey Stinger’s Organic Chocolate Gel. This energy gel boasts a mouth-watering chocolate flavor profile and in Vanessa’s words, it's the best tasting one on the market. Utilizing all organic ingredients and naturally caffeinated Green Tea Extract, the gel is easy on the stomach, provides a natural energy boost, and will help you avoid bonking during longer training sessions. Shop on the Honey Stinger website ($36.00 for Box of 24).

TriggerPoint GRID® Foam Roller

Backed by sports doctors, chiropractors, physical therapists, and our own PWR Lab Ambassador, Rachel Schneider, the next gift on our list is TriggerPoint’s GRID® Foam Roller. Featuring a patented multi-density foam surface, Rachel uses this full-body massage tool daily to ease muscle pain and stiffness, increase mobility, and improve circulation. Shop on the TriggerPoint website ($34.99).

HeadSpace Meditation App

This season wrap up the gift of Headspace so the runner in your life can unwrap a little less stress, better focus, and more happiness. Recommended by PWR Lab Ambassador and Australian Olympian Sam McEntee, Headspace offers bite-sized guided meditation exercises - including options specifically for athletes. Even if you only have five minutes to dedicate to meditation, Sam vouches that he’s never regretted taking the time to step back and meditate. Shop on the Headspace website ($12.99 for a Monthly Membership).

Run Gum

When you need a quick energy boost to get the most out of your run, Run Gum delivers just that. Part of Arsène Guillorel's race day routine, popping a piece of Run Gum is the last thing he does before toeing the starting line. With 100mg of caffeine per pack (50mg per piece of gum), Run Gum gives you energy fast without the bloat of drinking multiple caffeinated beverages. Plus it comes in an array of delicious flavors including, mint, fruit, and cinnamon. Shop on the Run Gum website ($22.29 for 24 Pieces).

Brooks Running Cascadia Thermal Mittens

Toasty hands equal happy runs with Brooks Running Cascadia Thermal Mittens. Allie Ostrander–the Brooks Beast, NCAA Champion, and World Championship Qualifier–wants you to wrap up a pair of these insulated and water-resistant mittens for the cold weather runner on your holiday shopping list. Shop on the Brooks website ($40.00).

Ah, Fudge Nuts! Picky Bar

For the Brooks Beast professional runner Garrett Heath, logging miles and training isn’t worth it unless he’s recovering. After the majority of his workouts, you can find Garrett refueling with an Ah, Fudge Nuts! Picky Bar and sipping on SOS Watermelon. This bar tastes like a peanut butter brownie, but packs 7g of plant-based protein. So go on and give the gift of chocolate fudgey goodness. Shop on the Picky Bar website ($2.75 per bar).

Passion Planner

You can’t go wrong with Passion Planner’s iconic 2020 Dated Elite Black annual planner. For Olympic Triathlete and World Champion, Katie Zaferes, her Passion Planner is key for setting goals (and accomplishing them, we might add!), organizing her schedule, and collecting her thoughts. Regardless of where you are on your journey, a Passion Planner is the best gift for anyone who’s ready to elevate to the next chapter of their athletic career. Shop on the Passion Planner website ($30.00).

Perfect Gifts for Runners

SNOOZ White Noise Sound Machine

SNOOZ’s White Noise Sound Machine is a must for Vanessa Fraser and light sleepers everywhere. With a real fan inside, this portable white noise machine turns any bedroom into an oasis for sleep and will elevate your sleep game entirely. At just 3.2 inches tall, you can travel anywhere with SNOOZ. Vanessa loves to use it to block out unwanted sounds in hotel rooms so she can rest easy the night before big races. Shop on the SNOOZ website ($79.99).

Apple AirPods

Good headphones were popular amongst the pros! After both receiving this next gift during last year’s holiday season, Apple’s AirPods come highly recommended from Arsène Guillorel and Sam McEntee. Apple has reimagined the headphone experience with their AirPods. These wireless headphones deliver 5 hours of listening time making them the perfect solution for cord-free running or gym work. Shop on the Apple website ($159.00).

As potential alternatives: Allie Ostrander recommended Jaybird wireless headphones ($159.99), and Katie Zaferes recommended the bone conduction technology of Aftershokz (wireless models ranging from $80–$160).

Under Armour Recover Sheet Set

Don’t sleep on this gift pick from Rachel Schneider… actually do sleep on this! Under Armour’s Recover Sheet Set was designed specifically with athletes in mind. The mineral-lined fabric returns infrared energy to your body, so you can rest better, recover quicker, and train harder. Shop on the Under Armour website ($300.00 for Queen Set).

NormaTec Leg Recovery System Pulse 2.0

Suggested by Allie OstranderKatie Zaferes, and Rachel Schneider, the NormaTec Leg Recovery System Pulse 2.0 is the pinnacle of the recovery game. Designed to help you train fast and recover faster, the system uses patented compression technology to improve circulation and ease muscle soreness. Whether you’re looking to recover after a hard training session or prep for the next day’s workout, NormaTecs always deliver. Shop on the NomaTec website ($1,195.00).

Garmin Forerunner 945 GPS Watch

Yes, a GPS watch can be pricey, but rightfully so as it’s a runner’s right hand (or left!) training partner. That's probably why six of the seven athletes referenced their watch as a key component of training. Garrett Heath’s go-to GPS watch for tracking all his miles is the Garmin Forerunner 945. Beyond tracking workouts, this watch allows you to sync your favorite playlist directly to your wrist. Shop on the Garmin website ($599.00).

Like Garrett, Arsène Guillorel is also a Garmin user. Sam McEntee and Rachel Schneider wear Suunto watches, and Katie Zaferes enjoys her Polar watch + arm band Optical Heart Rate Sensor. Once you’re done running with any of these watches, upload your results to PWR Lab to monitor and view all your training sessions! 

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PWR Lab decodes your masses of second-by-second training data and visualizes the insights that matter most. Athletes in motion use PWR Lab to track workload, monitor risk factors, learn about stride characteristics, and forecast future races & workouts.