Ah, the month of December! The Xmas markets, the mulled wine, the snow, Christmas… All of this make us dream every year. However, Christmas time means Christmas presents. Gifts that you wish to offer to your loved ones. And every year, this is the same baffling.
You are always afraid of offering the wrong gift, with the risk to end in a drawer and to be never used. So imagine trying to find useful gifts for your friend/brother/ mum (whoever the person can be), who is crazy about running and who wants a brand new running accessory for Xmas…
In order to avoid the outboard and to give you some good ideas, here is the top 5 Xmas gifts to offer to your runner one… Let’s go!
Obvious gifts: the right pair of shoes
I don’t want to go too much into details on this subject as I have already written a complete article about it. You maybe guessed it but this is THE basis for running. Make sure you choose the right shoes, according to her or his running profile. Do not hesitate to ask the person what kind of shoes she or he usually choose!
They should be comfortable as well as holding on well onto the feet, in order to maximize the protection. Ideally, you should always pick shoes with half a size or a full size above your usual size to provide comfort and room to the feet as they usually swell during exercise.
Running yes, but while listening to music please!
Here again, the subject is controversial. For some people, running while listening to music is a no-no as they want to pay more attention to the environment, whereas others can’t run without. If your friend belongs to the second category, please tell the person to pay attention to everything that is around for safety reason!
The best way for your friend to run while listening to her or his favourite songs is to choose earphones, which insert well in your ear and stay in it. There is nothing more annoying that earphones which fall at every stride! Otherwise, you can also go for an audio headset. And ideally, go for a sporty armband, scratched around the biceps, much more handy and safe for the smartphone than a bag.
The holdall object: the running belt
More than an accessory, this belt will be a real partner during your friend’s run. The person must take one if the running time is over an hour! Handy, it will allow to bring a lot of stuff, such as something to hydrate. Now you start understanding how hydration is important.
If the person goes for more than a 30min run, he or she must take something to drink. Please tell your friend to drink enough fluid before, during and after the run.
He or she can also bring some food: energy bars will allow to manage better the tiredness and to keep energy for the last kilometres. Before the effort, tell your friend to eat a cereal bar and to keep some energy bars for the run. Please avoid buying your mate chocolate and sweets too sweetened which can put the tummy upside down!
I strongly recommend you to choose a belt with lots of pockets, in order to have the bare minimum: cool water, a bit of food, the phone, the keys and some money, just in case. How’s that for useful gifts?
Choose the right socks for maximum comfort!
So now, here is a delicate matter: you have to know that socks are as important as shoes. I know it might not seem like the coolest gifts, but good socks can change a runner’s life. It’s up to you to choose between cotton socks or synthetic ones. But here again, the most important criteria is comfort. It’s really your own choice.
A good pair of socks must enable the foot to breathe and to absorb sweat without getting a damp foot. They mustn’t crease, nor slip in the shoe, nor tighten the ankle, nor being too thin or too thick… It’s up to you to find the right balance! In order to avoid blisters, I suggest you to pick the double layer socks, especially if your friend have sensitive feet. In addition, these are the most comfy socks!
And the top notch running accessory: a pair of Run Profiler!
If you don’t know what Run Profiler is, you have passed by something amazing. What is Run Profiler: it’s a pair of connected insoles that you can put in any running shoes. This is the perfect gift for your runner! They will analyse precisely:
- The run, thanks to a 3D tracker. The person will exactly know the position of the feet while running, the kind of stride… Each movement of the run will be analysed. Thus, information will be provided regarding the warm up and how to avoid wasting energy unnecessarily.
- The management of the tiredness and the risk of injury. Run Profiler detects the drop of reactivity and measure the fatigue thresholds during a run, and also the instability of the posture. Run Profiler also prevents from potential hazardous movement.
- The performance is analysed and some information will be provided on how to improve one’s running, by giving key issues to work during the following session.
Roughly speaking, Run Profiler is a personalized coach, which adapts itself to everybody’s session. A must have!
Some more accessories to conclude…
Of course there are plenty of other useful running accessories to go running. We can mention, for example:
- The adapted outfit for an efficient running. Pick high quality clothes and not a cotton T-shirt you would buy in the first shop you see. The body must breathe and avoid sweating too much: choose synthetic material for the T-shirt, the shorts, the bra… Try to avoid definitively cotton, if you want to buy your friend an outfit that dries quickly!
- A Road ID: what is that? It’s a small electronic unit, with a bracelet shape. It allows the user to provide the necessary information, useful to her or his identification and to help saving life. Your friend can indicate if he or she is diabetic, allergic, haemophiliac, prone to heart problem… it’s very useful in certain circumstances, such as dog bites or a bad landing. Think about it!
This article is now finished, I hope I gave you good gift ideas!
So, what are your going to buy to your runner finally?
See you soon, you running maniacs!
Sources: Le Petit Shaman, Merci pour le chocolat (French running blogger), Strength Running, Running Competitor, Active.com.