If there's one thing gym rats love even more than a well-equipped gym, it's some great new fitness swag to add to their collection. Fortunately, there's no shortage of gear and equipment on the market that any fitness fanatic will be happy to unwrap this holiday season. But therein lies a problem. With so many options to choose between, how do you decide which ones are worthy of your hard-earned cash, and which ones are best left on the shelf? If you're struggling to decide which brand is the best, which running shoes offer the greatest support, which protein powder is the tastiest, or which fitness app offers the biggest bang for your buck, don't panic. To help you pick the best gift for your favorite exercise buff, we've rounded up 20 of the best holiday gifts for gym rats on the market. Without further ado, here they are.
20. 2XU MCS Run Compression Tights
$119.95 might seem a steep price to pay for a pair of tights, but the 2XU MCS Run Compression Tights aren't your average pair of tights. The PWX fabric provides targeted compression that's said to increase the efficacy of warm-ups - perfect for runs on chilly days. By utilizing the very latest in compression wear tech, the tights also offer the same faster recovery properties associated with compression wear, helping to reduce fatigue, increase performance, and kick-start the recovery process before you even hit the showers. For anyone keen on minimizing fatigue and maximizing performance, they're a must-have.
19. Fitbit Sense
Fitbit Sense is the brand's most advanced health smartwatch yet, offering a score of premium features designed to please even the most discerning fitness fanatic. Standout features include a skin temperature sensor, ECG and SpO2 apps, and an EDA (electrodermal) scan app that reads your mood. It also comes with all the standard fitness tracking and smartwatch functions you'd expect, including a voice assistant, Bluetooth calls, active modes, menstrual health tracking, and the option to download hundreds of fitness-related apps.
18. Marc Pro Plus
At just a smidgen under $1400, the Marc Pro Plus isn't cheap. But if you're looking for a very special gift for a very special gym rat, it's worth every dollar. A uniquely designed electric muscle stimulation (EMS) device that's intended to eliminate pain and help recovery, it's the ideal post-workout tool. Although there's been an influx of EMS devices to the market in recent years, this stands out as one of the very best, offering near enough medical-grade technology for unparalleled results. It's also incredibly easy to carry around, making it ideal for regular use.
17. Therabody Recovery Air
Therabody Recovery Air is a leg compression system designed to increase circulation, reduce soreness and support rapid recovery after a workout. The boots might look like they're more suited to astronauts than gym bunnies, but as a way of reducing fatigue and elevating soreness after a hard session, they're unbeatable.
16. Vega Sport Protein Powder
Protein powders might not be a substitute for a balanced diet, but they make meeting protein goals a breeze. Vega Sport Protein Powder not only tastes great (which can't be said of a lot of protein powders), it also delivers a hefty whack of nutrients. Just one serving contains a whopping 60 grams of protein and six grams of BCAAs and glutamine. If that wasn't enough, it also packs in a serious dose of tart cherry, turmeric, and probiotics, all of which can help support recovery and improve overall health.
15. Hydro Flask Wide Mouth Water Bottle
A decent water bottle is a must for fitness junkies. The Hydro Flask Wide Mouth Water Bottle is an exceptionally solid choice. Made from BPA and phthalate-free stainless steel, the insulated bottle will keep drinks nicely chilled for up to 24 hours. For those who prefer a caffeine shot with their workout, it can be used to keep coffee hot for 12 hours. Thanks to its durable construction, it can stand up to being chucked in a gym bag without the slightest fuss.
14. WOD Nation Speed Skipping Rope
By now, we all know the benefits of skipping. Just a few minutes of jumping rope can improve cardiovascular health, increase concentration, improve coordination, increase stamina, improve flexibility, and a whole lot more besides. Of all the ropes on the market, the WOD Nation Speed Skipping Rope is one of the best. Crafted from high-quality material for excellent durability, it comes with anti-slip handles and an adjustable length that makes it suitable for men, women, and even kids. With its compact design and accompanying carrying case, it's easy to store and even easier to transport.
13. Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21
A good pair of sneakers is an essential part of every fitness fanatic's arsenal. The Adrenaline GTS has been the most popular shoe in Brooks' catalog for over two decades, and for very good reason. The latest addition to the lineup, the Adrenaline GTS 21, is as exceptional as you'd expect, with patented technology and extra padding to guarantee the most comfortable, supportive fit. At just under $130, they're by no means the most expensive pair of sneakers on the market, but in this case, a low(ish) price point doesn't equate to low quality.
12. Under Armour Swacket
If you know a runner who doesn't let a bit of bad weather stop them in their tracks, make their lives a little more comfortable with the Under Armour Swacket. The fabric is lightweight and soft enough to pass for a comfy hoody, but thanks to Under Armour's Storm technology, the jacket is wind and water-resistant, making it the ideal solution to inclement weather. The addition of an internal phone pocket and reflective detailing doesn't go amiss either.
11. Hyperwear Hyper Vest Pro
Weight vests sometimes get a bad rep for being unwieldy and uncomfortable, but choose your vest wisely, and you'll find them a great way of increasing lean muscle mass, building endurance, improving bone density, adding strength, and a bunch of other good stuff. If you want to treat someone to the best of the best, check out the Hyperwear Hyper Vest Pro. Unlike some vests that have to be pulled on like a sweater, this one goes on like a coat before being zipped up. Side cords let you tighten the vest to your body, resulting in a much more appealing aesthetic.
10. Nike Apple Watch
If you're buying for a runner who hasn't already jumped on board the Apple Watch bandwagon, show them what they've been missing with Apple's latest must-have collaboration with Nike. Designed to react to the wearer's motion, it's ideal for people who love keeping track of their miles. It comes with Nike’s Run Club app built in, offering a great motivational tool for runners who need a helping hand to stay focused on their workouts. As an added advantage, it can be easily customized with their favorite colors and gradient.
9. Everest Gym Bag
If there's one thing every gym rat needs, it's a reliable gym bag. The Everest Gym Bag might be an oldie, but it's a goodie. Named as one of the best gym bags on the market by divein.com, this mid-sized powerhouse is suitable for everyone from basketball players to CrossFit enthusiasts. Despite being a steal at less than $30, it's crammed with great features, including a padded water bottle pocket and a separate compartment for shoes or sweaty gym gear.
8. Triggerpoint GRID Vibe Plus
The Triggerpoint GRID Vibe Plus might be small enough to fit in a gym bag, but don't underestimate its power. With the click of a button, the foam roller emits vibrations of 33 Hz, the ideal frequency to relax sore, aching muscles after a workout. For added convenience, it comes with a micro-USB charging port, making it easy to charge on the go.
7. Baxter of California Citrus & Herbal Musk Body Bundle
If you know a gym rat with simple but sophisticated tastes, indulge them with the Baxter of California Citrus & Herbal Musk Body Bundle. It's a step up from a simple bar of soap, but its subtle scents and simple packaging are classic enough for even the most low-key guy to pop it in their gym bag.
6. FightCamp Personal Package
Priced just shy of a cool $1000, this next gift is probably not the ideal solution for the office Secret Santa. But if you're buying for someone very special and don't mind splashing the cash on something that's guaranteed to go down a storm, the FightCamp Personal Package is ideal. As menshealth.com explains, the home boxing package brings the intensity of a hardcore fight class into the home by streaming on-demand classes. Along with the classes, the package includes a high-quality standing bag with sensors to track each punch.
5. Future Fitness App
As Yahoo News says, if you'd rather your loved one steer clear of an actual gym amid a very dynamic public health crisis, no one's going to blame you. Fortunately, there's still plenty of ways they can get their endorphins pumping at home, particularly if someone's been thoughtful enough to treat them to the Future Fitness App. The subscription-based app offers users one-on-one training sessions with licensed personal trainers, wherever and whenever they want. In addition to the sessions, the app also keeps track of your weekly workouts (both those done with a trainer and independently) to help you fine-tune your regime.
4. JamGym Muscle Massage Gun
Working out might be good for your body, but it's a one-way ticket to sore muscles. If you know a fitness fanatic who regularly complains of stiff, aching muscles, give them some relief with the JamGym Muscle Massage Gun. It's guaranteed to provide instant relief to almost every part of the body. Designed specifically with athletes in mind, the massager can work for up to 6 hours on one charge and comes with a variety of detachable attachments for a customized experience.
3. Google Pixel Buds A-Series True Wireless In-Ear Headphones
If you're buying for someone who loves working out to some banging tunes, take the advice of rd.com and treat them to a pair of Google Pixel Buds A-Series True Wireless In-Ear Headphones. Perfect for music-loving gym bunnies, they're a fraction of the price of Apple AirPods but deliver the same great listening experience. Available in both classic white and olive, they deliver up to five hours of perfect playback on a single charge, making them a practical, thoughtful gift that's guaranteed to go down a storm.
2. Everlane ReNew Air Shorts
Buying apparel as a gift is always a tricky business, but providing you know the other person's size and style well enough not to offend, a pair of shorts makes a great gift for gym rats. According to Rolling Stone, Everlane ReNew Air Shorts are some of the best on the market, being stylish enough to throw on for a coffee run, but practical enough to suit a session at the gym. Made from a combination of recycled polyester and elastane, they're extremely comfortable to wear and won't kick up a fuss at being chucked in the washing machine after every workout. The material wicks away moisture to keep you dry, while the drawstring waist and seven-inch inseam promises a great all-around fit.
1. ShakeSphere Tumbler
As allfinegifts.com says, a shaker is a great, practical gift for gym rats who like to guzzle down a silky-smooth protein shake after a workout. If you want the best of the best, try a ShakeSphere Tumbler. ShakeSphere has cornered the market in affordable, world-beating quality shaker bottles, all of which are guaranteed leakproof to ensure no nasty spills in your gym bag. Their original tumbler is a steal at just $20, and comes in enough colors to suit any taste.
Written by Lily Wordsmith
Read more posts by Lily Wordsmith