Gifting your favorite runner (or yourself) on a budget may seem like a daunting task. So we’ve compiled a list of tried-and-true presents that you don’t have to splurge for but they’ll appreciate all the same.
Not finding what you’re looking for? Check out our other gift guides for runners:
You would never believe how long a pair of $25 shades could last. Whatever your favorite style or color, Goodr probably has it. The best part: On the run, these things don’t bounce or budge.
Our testers found this mask to work decently well for running, despite initial misgivings about the breathability of the canvas material. And because they come in a pair, the person you buy them for can keep one by the door and another in the car just in case.
Another mask we tested this year, Under Armour’s Sports Mask reigned supreme and earned a Gear of the Year award. The inner lining is made from a nylon yarn treated with titanium dioxide to disperse body heat and feel cool against the skin. PU foam serves as a filter, allowing for easier breathing beneath the water-resistant outer shell. It even provides built-in UPF 50+ protection and comes in four colors and five sizes for a dialed-in fit on every face shape.
The Magic Bullet can destroy just about anything it its path, which is great if you want to mix fruits and veggies into a beverage with no chunks in it.
With pages organized to make it easy to take notes on distance, time, and even the weather, the Run Planner can help provide some accountability and guidance during daily training. It can be cathartic to log sessions by hand while working toward a new PR.
Admittedly, anti-chafe cream may not be the gift that elicits an excited “oh, thanks!” when they unwrap it. But they’ll come back and thank you after its nourishing and hydrating blend of coconut oil, cocoa butter, beeswax, and Vitamin E saves their feet and thighs some blisters.
The knee-high length, wicking polyester build, and, oh yes, festive print of this sock will help get them in the holiday spirit and work up the motivation to run in the cold.
This print is something they can hang on the wall to say, “I love running and cool art.”
Eight hours of battery life means the Ink’d have enough juice for several runs before they need to be charged. And they’re decently durable, holding up even after we've yanked them by the earbud out of our gym bag several times.
It’s easy to take a sweaty beanie off at the end of a chilly run, throw it in a gym bag, and forget that it’s there until you pull it out again before you head out the door. The benefit of the merino in this hat is that it has natural odor-fighting prowess, so it won’t stew in its own funk between runs.
Save yourself the anxiety of putting together a curated selection of gifts; RunnerBox will do it for you. The subscription service sends a shipment every two months, with gear like energy bars and smaller accessories included.
Or if you’re looking for something a little more tailored, Stance has its own subscription box. The brand includes a selection of its fun printed socks (men’s or women’s) or men’s underwear. And you can choose whether the boxes arrive monthly or quarterly, depending on how fast your giftee typically burns through socks.
The Whoop is for those times when you’re not running, which is most of the day. It’ll compile data on your heart rate, movement, sleep habits, and more to give you a recovery score, a good gauge for how hard you should push exercising each day.
These silicone wedding rings are designed to endure the moments you’d usually take off your traditional metal band, like lifting weights, swimming, cooking, and traveling.
Putting together a 20-page book of some of their most memorable running moments captured in photos takes thought and care. Selecting the images will be the biggest challenge; Shutterfly will handle making the actual book for you.
Using the included straps, you can attach these lights almost anywhere—to a wrist, ankle, or bike frame—for increased visibility.
We dubbed this the unicorn of sports bras for its combination of soft material, supportive structure, and $14 price tag.
Surprise your favorite runner with this cheeky book. Full of answers to every question you don’t want to ask and training tips to help improve performance, it contains (almost) all the knowledge they need.
Multiple settings on this waterproof headlamp will light up any dimly lit run. And you’ll get a lot of life out of just three AAA batteries.
Give them a break from the gels with these tasty stroopwafels. Yes, they take up more room in a pocket or pack, but the crunchy exterior and gooey honey inside are worth it.
Think the runner in your life may need some extra inspiration? Get them the Runner’s World calendar with its photos of scenic trails, training and nutrition tips, and even a pace guide for races. It’s even on sale now for 25 percent off.
To be sure, managing sweat is an important—if not glamorous—part of running. Add a bit of flair with this patriotic headband.
Whether you’re out on a long run or hiking in the mountains, this bottle stays sturdy even as you sip from it. And when you’re done, it folds up small for easy storage.
These deodorizers use charcoal to absorb odors and moisture, which prevents bacteria from growing in your gear bag or shoes. Each pair keeps its funk-fighting power for up to one year.
A good performance trucker hat will vent well so sweat doesn’t build up on your dome. But the best will have a cool design on it.
Part of Cotopaxi’s (Re)Purpose Collection, the Bataan is made from fabric scraps left over from the production of other packs and gear. So it cuts down on waste, and since the craftspeople doing the sewing are working with what’s available, no two packs are exactly alike. As for practicality, the three-liter capacity is enough to stash things like a wallet, a phone, and some fuel.
You can use these as an easy stocking stuffer. Editors around Runner’s World have been known to hoard boxes for a quick You would never believe how long a pair of $25.
Forget the mess of a baggie full of ice cubes. Stash this wrap in the freezer to keep it frosty, then cinch it tight around aching body parts for a cold squeeze to help speed recovery.
Nathan’s 10-ounce, insulated bottle is easy to bring on runs f or unobtrusive hydration. Bonus: It has a reflective print to make you more noticeable to drivers.
It will protect your phone, sure, but this case is also made for storing cards or cash. And the grippy texture makes it easy to carry on a run if you prefer not to bring along a pack or armband.
For runners with bad knees or ankles, the gift of stabilizing KT Tape can be a godsend. It’s easy to slap on and shore up creaky joints, which you’ll appreciate when you get home and aren’t laid up on the couch.
As phones get bigger and bigger, it gets harder to find an armband that doesn’t slip under the weight. Even though this Tribe can fit an iPhone X, its neoprene, Lycra, and polyurethane construction will help it stay in place.
What better way for them to celebrate finishing a marathon than by imbibing from a glass with the race’s route on it? The vessel is also a good conversation starter (read: an excuse to regale others with tales of running exploits).
Now, we’re a bit biased here, of course. But a subscription to—or a year’s renewal of—a magazine packed with advice, inspiration stories, and gear recommendations can help maintain the stoke for running.