Okay, today's Black Friday—the biggest shopping day of the year. If you're like some, you've been up since midnight and you're already on your 10th store hitting all the sales with no mercy. Or if you're like me, you're as far away from a crowded shopping mall as you can get.
Either case, it is the time of the year to be thinking of gifts for your loved ones. And, if they're runners, why not treat them to something they can use while pounding the pavement (or the trail) in 2010? Or maybe you're the one who's the runner and you're struggling with gift ideas to pass along to your family members. Whichever is the case, below are some great running gift-buying tips, gift ideas, and websites you may want to check out.
Gift-Buying Tips for Runners: 1. Runners are extremely picky about their shoes (or if they're like my barefoot running friend, Josh, they won't have any need for shoes). Don't buy shoes for runners unless they've specifically expressed exactly what shoe brand and model to buy. If you definitely know that someone needs running shoes, but you're not sure what to get, then a gift certificate to your local running store or for one of the many online running stores is your best bet. 2. Items that meet a runner's fueling or hydration needs are a good bet, but check to see if your runner prefers a handheld water bottle or a hydration belt before making a purchase.
3. Running Apparel is always a good idea, but pay close attention to the types of running clothes worn by your runner. Some runners prefer longer, baggy shorts, while others like them just above the knee, and still others like the shorter racing style of shorts. For colder climates, try to find out if your runner likes traditional-fitting or looser-fitting running tights. Be sure to buy clothes made of technical fabrics that breathe and allow sweat/moisture to be whisked away. Avoid buying anything made of cotton.
4. Is your running friend always complaining of sore muscles? Then maybe a gift certificate for a sports massage is just what he/she needs!
5. If you've racked your brain and you still can't come up with any gift ideas for your runner, think about purchasing the services of a running coach/trainer for an upcoming race your loved one/friend has been talking about. Check around, you may be able to buy a gift certificate for the services that could be used anytime during the upcoming year. To find an certified RRCA running coach in your area [click here].