We leave tomorrow for California.
How is that even possible!?
It seemed like December was a lifetime away, yet here we are, ready to go, and after this post, I will be checking out until Monday.
I am not sure if I will update my blog for Monday. It really depends on the sleep situation that evening. I very rarely can sleep the night after a race, so if that is the case, you may be getting an update, but if I don’t feel like it, I am afraid you may have to wait 🙂
Either way, I thought I would leave you with my gift guide. The products I have used and loved this year, and would recommend for the runner in your life.
I tried to pick a variety of prices, so you can choose what you are looking for, but let me just say once again (although I hope you already know), that I would not recommend anything I did not genuinely believe in.
I did have companies reach out to me asking to promote their product, but I said no. It was too late, and as cool as their product sounded, I cannot recommend something I have not tried. Nor will I recommend something I would not purchase myself (although yes, some of these products I was sent for free).
Some of these companies, I am an affiliate for, and I used to be scared of that word when I would see it on other websites, but all it means is that if you decide to purchase the product through the link on this page, I receive a small kickback from the company.
So you can either purchase it through their main website, and have 100% of the profits go to them, or you can purchase through here, and give me a small percentage.
It is entirely up to you. If it is a small company, and you want them to have the profit, I completely understand, honestly 🙂
But, enough rambles for one day. Here is my gift guide for runners 2016.
SEE YOU ON MONDAY! My Instagram is the best way to follow my next few days and post race.
A few months ago, when Saucony first said they would sponsor Run to the Top (the running podcast I host), they mentioned that they would like me to focus on the new Freedom ISO shoes they had coming out in December.
I said I would be happy to……IF I liked them myself.
I couldn’t encourage others to purchase a pair of shoes I had never worn myself.
They were kind enough to send me two advanced pairs, although to be honest, I was a little skeptical.
They were unlike anything I had ever seen before, and usually the first model of a new shoe is a little unreliable.
But guys, they NAILED IT with these ones.
I have only been wearing them for about a month, and we had to bring them in gradually, as we didn’t want to make any major changes with CIM closing in, but I am pretty sure these are gonna become my favorite shoe.
I LOVE them.
They are sleek, stylish, and cool.
They are responsive because of the 100% Everun sole, making them really springy to run off….which has been especially nice in my taper when I have felt sluggish.
Oh, and did I mention they are beautiful?
I get that they are expensive, but they are well worth the money.
Runners who like neutral, minimalist style shoes, but with good “response”, especially if you are sore or tired from training, this helps a lot!
Okay, so I have to admit, I was a little behind the curve for this one.
I knew I would love the recipes in there, but I also know that I like to just experiment with making meals based on what we have available through our farm share and what we feel like.
But then one of the girls on Steve’s team brought her version for me to check out while she was home with family.
I had a look through the recipes, when I realized that I could have been a co-author with Shalane and Elyse. Not that I am a big shot, I just mean that the meals were VERY similar to a lot of the meals we make, and they had the same ideals with the way they look at food.
I HAD to get myself a copy, and Rodale were kind enough to send me one.
I have made about 5 recipes from it so far, and I have LOVED them all, especially the Superfood Muffins.
If you struggle with knowing what recipes to cook for good, healthy, quality meals, this is the cookbook for you.
Runners wanting to make eating good quality food a focus, but don’t know where to start.
I had this on my list last year, but I would say I am even more a believer this year.
Purchasing an ElliptiGO 8C was SO worth it.
We are so happy we bought one, and it has allowed me to get so much fitter aerobically without the impact or damage on my body.
I am very lucky that I have not had an extended amount of time off due to injury, but if I had, I would have used this thing to DEATH.
You can obviously use it outside, but as you see in the picture, I put mine on a trainer and use it inside, so if you live somewhere crazy hilly like I do, you can have fun inside too.
If you missed the podcast I did with Darren last year, you can listen in here, but I fully believe that the ElliptiGO will keep you in VERY good shape.
I realize it is expensive, and something that not everyone will have the means to buy, but if you can, and you are at the point where you are about maxed out on the amount of pounding your body can handle from the impact of running, this is what you are looking for, and you will “pay it off” in no time.
Oh, and its fun too!
Besides, it lets me catch up on Gossip Girl or watch my training partner play Just Dance to keep me entertained (above!) 😉
Injury prone runners or runners wanting to reach the next level.
Okay, so this is one of the things I want on my Christmas list, and I am only just starting to get into oils thanks to Heather who sent me a lovely little care package of oils, and my good friend Ashley, but this is something I want to explore more in the future.
Essential oils are so good for the body and mind, and they are good to just have in your home to promote relaxation, recovery, and health.
Ashley first brought this up to me years ago, and she is one of the mothers I admire and look up to the most in this world. Although I have not really been great with adding them to my life until Heather gave me the kick to get going on it :). I am asking for a diffuser for Christmas myself, so hopefully this is something we can all work on together.
If you care about your long-term health and want to stay away from nasty chemicals in the home, this is the next step for you (and me!)
Runners who want to take the next step in putting their health first, or if you want to focus on relaxing as we move into 2017.
When this was first brought to my attention, I didn’t think I would like it. I thought it was a waste of money, and something that I just didn’t see what the big deal was (even though I saw plenty of runners RAAAVVVING about it).
But then I got one.
And I felt like a little kid opening their stocking.
I was excited to see what was inside, and try out the different products on offer, and I loved the little touches that came with it. Like the motivational sticker and the recipe that comes with it.
Since then, I have looked forward to receiving my stride box in the mail, and I am not gonna lie, I get very excited when I see it in my mailbox.
If you have a runner in your life, a subscription to Stridebox is SUCH a good gift!
Runners who love to try out new products and for loved ones who are unsure what to buy the runner in their life.
I used to see smoothies as such a waste of breakfast.
I LOVE my breakfast foods, and smoothies were just, well, very boring to me.
Sure, you can make unlimited varieties with different fruits and even adding in hidden vegetables (try the Can’t Beet Me Now from Run Fast. Eat Slow), but I also love textures in foods, and a smoothie got rid of all of them.
But I have since discovered smoothie bowls, and I love to add cacao chips, coconut flakes, Golgi berries, or other things that give it some texture as well as added nutrition.
Daily Harvest appeared around the same time I discovered this.
They mail you a freezer box of measured out smoothies in unique flavors like Cacao and Avocado, Cold Brew + Almond, and my personal favorite Chocolate + Blueberry, all packed with nutrition. When you want one, you pull it out the freezer, put it in your blender with some liquid, and enjoy. If you are on the go, you can even put it back into the cup it came in, as there is a straw hole.
If you are busy and hate to food prep, or get stuck in a smoothie rut. This really is genius.
And even better, they have now come out with soups too! I have not yet tried those, but with flavors like Mushroom + Miso and Carrot + Coconut I can’t wait to!
Runners who want to eat healthy, but don’t have time (or the motivation) to food prep.
You are probably sick of me going on about strength training by now, but seriously, adding strength training was the biggest life changer to my running of everything I have done.
And the more I learn about it (I have an AMAZING podcast coming with a scientist who works under Tim Noakes), the more I realize just how good it is, for ALL of us.
Whether you are a runner or not. Mother or not. Experienced or not.
Strength training will change your life.
Okay, so you don’t all have access to your own Drew, and I am very fortunate to have found someone who knows exactly what they are doing, but this Strength Training Program from Runners Connect is a VERY good second choice, in my opinion.
You can do it from home, and you only have to pay once, and the videos are yours for good.
If you truly want to stay injury free and/or get better, this is the next step, before you run even one more mile.
Runners who keep getting injured and are fed up.
I have talked before about Thrive, but every time I make an order I love it even more.
You get access to quality, sustainable, nutritious products for significantly lower prices than anywhere else, and when you sign up, your membership helps to pay for food for a family in need.
So far this year I have saved over $300 from what I would have paid elsewhere, so for me, the $60 annual fee is already WELL paid off.
We mostly buy snacks and bars from them, but also household products without the nasty chemicals and my beloved Coconut Manna….although, guys I have to tell you, I have been cheating on the Nutiva one with this Arisana one. Ohhhh its sooooo gooooood!
Oh, and you get one month free, and 15% off your first order by signing up through my link, so give it a try, and tell me what you choose to buy.
What do you have to lose?
$whatever you decide to purchase + $60 for the year at Thrive Market.
Healthy snacks and pantry items where you dont have to worry about what products are good and bad.
You know I have changed my diet this year, and somehow I stumbled upon Go Raw.
Oh yes, that was it, we bought some of their cookies through Thrive Market!
I devoured the entire bag in almost one sitting, and went to the website to see what else I could find.
There were so many good snack choices, it was hard to know where to start.
I was fortunate enough to add them to my army, and have therefore been able to try out all of their products, and I love the amount of foods they have been able to create while only using raw foods. It is amazing.
Some of my favorites include….well, the cookies….no surprise there, although keep in mind they are not going to taste like a fresh-baked chocolate chip, but are really moreish, and I am sure you will love them. Some other favorites include the Superfood Bars made from watermelon seeds and the chocolate covered coconut flakes.
$your choice at GoRaw.com or use your Thrive Market Membership
Runners who want to eat snacks containing simple, wholesome ingredients that you can eat without worrying about what you are putting in your body.
I actually didn’t plan this, but I did just happen to type this out after the earbuds when I was writing my list, but yes, these work SO well with those earbuds above, and they are how I carry my phone when I do listen to music. It sits in those wonderful little pockets so well, and you would never notice it was there.
Nor would you notice the bottles carrying the Generation UCAN I carried for hours on end as I did my long runs.
These are my favorite shorts/capris ever, and without them, I would have been doing a heck of a lot of loops to get my long run in.
They are comfortable, well thought out, and of course, in cool colors.
And yes, I will be racing in them for CIM in just a few days.
Marathoners who need to practice drinking from (and maybe race with) bottles containing fuel. The pockets are also handy for holding your phone without it bouncing around.
I LOOVVVEEE this company.
Everything they stand for.
Everything they offer.
Everything I have tried.
Epic makes animal products from sustainable sources, and for those times when we need that protein post workout, but are on the go, these are perfect.
Our favorite is their Salt and Pepper Venison, so that is where I would recommend starting, but look around the website, there is just so much good stuff on there.
$30ish on EpicBar.com You can also purchase them through Thrive Market
If you are constantly rushing around, but want to get that complete protein source to go with your carbohydrate refueling, these are perfect to throw in your bag.
I was only introduced to these bars earlier this year, but I LOVE them. Made of an ancient grain blend and chia seeds, every ingredient in these bars are PACKED with nutrition.
Steve loves the Peanut Butter Cacao Superfood Protein Bars, and I would say that is the best place to start, but I have not found one I haven’t liked. Just the ratio of chia seeds increases….so depends how much you like them 😉
Just make sure you bring some floss with you if you have an important meeting after your snack, as those chia seeds can be sneaky buggers 🙂
$20-30 on HealthWarrior.com You can also get it on….you guessed it 😉 Thrive Market
If you are not so good at getting your nutritious foods into your body the way you hope, and want to include more foods that give you lots of health benefits without trying to figure out how to add them in, Health Warrior bars are PACKED with nutritious ingredients.
Okay, so Saucony have started making every day clothing.
They are still comfortable like running clothes, but they are designed to just spend your entire day in, and trust me, I do just that.
At first I wondered what the heck they were thinking, but then I tried it on, and I fell in love.
Many of you have asked about it, so here it is 🙂
Comfortable clothes for everyday use…..basically my entire life! If you love active wear, this is for you!
Last year I mentioned Peanut Butter Crack….I mean Peanut Butter M&Ms, and although these are still probably my favorite candy, I thought I would do something different that I have enjoyed every day during marathon training.
These Dark Chocolate Bars from Trader Joes are dark chocolate, so you can rest assured you are getting the nutritional component, but it tastes so good!
Steve took a little while to warm up to it, but now he loves it just as much as me.
Besides, look at this GIANT bar!
If that isn’t a perfect gift for a girl, I don’t know what is!
Satisfying sweet cravings while getting a boost of antioxidants.
After my Inside Tracker results kept showing high liver enzymes, I decided to take action. Taking a daily probiotic was the best way to start, and I am a BIG fan of Prescript Assist as a probiotic you can trust.
I have had significantly less stomach issues since I started taking these, and I feel confident that they are helping my long term health, while
Oh, and if you somehow forget it for a few days, it lasts two years, so you don’t have to worry about it going out of date 3 weeks after you buy it 😉
Runners who have an upset stomach often either during or after runs, or if your blood work shows high liver stress.
This year when the two attacks happened to runners, I decided it was a good time to interview someone on the podcast about runner safety. When I talked to Todd Williams about runner safety, he made me realize just how naive I had been.
This is one of the products he recommended for runners, and I mostly run in the middle of the dy, sometimes we all have to run when it is dark, or in areas we do not know. GoGuarded helps to keep you safe, and I recommend one of these for the runner in your life.
Female runners who spend a lot of time running in the dark or in areas that are less densely populated.
I was lucky enough to be sent this in September, which has given me lots of time to start using it and read through all the motivation and support they give you.
There is something about writing your training down with pen and paper that is so satisfying, and these two books are great for runners of every level.
If you have some big goals you want to accomplish, and need motivation, the Compete Journal is just what you are looking for.
If you are looking for something simple to document your training (or if you have previously owned a Believe Journal), the Believe logbook is sleek and effective and comes in a 6 month block, just what we need for a training segment!
$21.95 (currently on sale for $14.55) for Compete Training Journal and $17.96 (currently on sale for $12.16 for Believe Logbook
Runners who love to use their training to build confidence of how far you have come, either before a race or just during hard times. They are great for looking back on your journey.
Finally, although I did not recommend them, my other sponsors would also make wonderful Christmas gifts for the runner in your life, but I wanted to give you some other choices today, as I talk about these products often.
So here is a quick rundown in case you need it:
Delivery individual packets of sustainably raised frozen fish, to thaw and enjoy at your leisure. We all know just how good fish is for us, well prove it! You can trust in this fish 🙂 We love the Wild Blend.
EnduroPacks Liquid Electrolytes (use coupon code TINAMUIR for 15% off your first order)
I will be using this during my marathon. It is easy to carry in your pocket in a race, in your bag to spray in any drink, or after any workout. No more electrolyte loss cramps. WIN!
BodyHealth Perfect Amino tablets (use coupon code TINA10 for 10% off)
This has been a real game changer for me. Your body can utilize 99% of the protein in this (compared with 14-16% in soy and whey) to truly assist in recovery. If you were planning on purchasing protein for a loved one, purchase this instead.
Obviously this only works if you are in the area surrounding Kentucky, but there is a lot of buzz around Kombucha lately, and rightly so. I LOVE these, and drink them almost every day after a run, especially if my stomach is upset, it helps to settle it.
Nuttzo (use code muir-20 for 20% off)
Who doesn’t love nut butter? Okay, people with nut allergies, but if you don’t love it just cause….I am not sure we can be friends anymore. I go through an insane amount of Nuttzo Power Fuel, and I am not embarrassed to admit it.
Inside Tracker (use coupon code TINA for 10% off)
If you (or your loved one) have been feeling crappy lately, and have no idea why, this will show you. Inside Tracker will assess your bloodwork, show you which of your levels are optimized, and give you recommendations of how to get the at risk markers back up to the level that will help you.
Generation UCAN (use coupon code ucanelitetm for 10% off)
The Blueberry Pomegranate Superstarch is going to fuel me through 26.2 miles this weekend, but I love it for other things to. I have it daily for recovery (especially in my recovery bowl), and love their bars too!
PHEW! And that, my friends, should keep you going till Monday, where you might….or might not 😉 hear from me.
Thank you for all your love and support, it truly means so much!
Now go get your Christmas shopping out the way 😉[bctt tweet=”17 fantastic runner gift ideas from @tinamuir” via=”no”]
What is on your wishlist?