11 Thoughtful Gifts for Runners

iStock.com/skynesher
iStock.com/skynesher

There are a lot of exercise options out there, but one of the most popular—running—remains the simplest. That doesn’t mean you can’t accessorize or improve comfort. Check out 11 gifts for the pavement-pounding enthusiast in your life.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

1. Smartwool Phd Insulatd Training Gloves

A look at a pair of Smartwool PHD insulated gloves that are used for running
Amazon

Cut down on the effects of brisk winter with the Smartwool PhD glove, which offers wind resistance, reflective stripes for visibility, and touchscreen-compatible thumb and forefinger pads.

Find It at Amazon for $60 and also at these other retailers:

2. Garmin Forerunner 35

A Garmin Forerunner 35 smart watch displays its heart rate monitoring feature
Amazon

There are dozens of fitness and smart watches out there. While we can’t tell you there’s a clear number one, we can tell you no one is going to be disappointed with the Garmin Forerunner, which tracks your running paths, distances, and speed without having to use your cell phone. You can also monitor your heart rate without use of a chest strap. Reading all this data is easy with the vibrant, simple display.

Find It at Amazon for $158.

3. Osprey Duro 6 Running Hydration Vest

The Osprey Duro 6 vest provides hydration for runners
Amazon

Know a trail runner? Deck them out in this hydration vest that lets them tote up to 1.5 liters of water as well as food and other supplies without the need for arm straps or other compartments. A sensible strap system makes sure the vest doesn’t bounce during movement.

Find It at REI for $110.

4. Nike Elite Cushioned Socks

The Nike Elite sock offers cushioning for runners
Nike

Nike’s wool-blend sock was designed with runners in mind. The “splash zone” over the toes resist water, while the zoned cushioning makes sure your feet don’t take a beating.

Find It at Nike for $26 and up.

5. Extreme Sport Jelly Beans

A look at the packaging for the Extreme Sport Beans from Jelly Belly
Jelly Belly

Who knew jelly beans could be beneficial to athletic performance? Jelly Belly’s Extreme Sport Beans give long-distance runners a burst of energy thanks to caffeine and electrolytes, all in an easy-to-snack jelly bean for eating on the go.

Find It at Jelly Belly for $8.

6. FlexFixx Footfixx Massage Ball Therapy Set

A look at the FlexFixx FootFixx massage ball set
Amazon

If you run, your feet are destined to hurt. Help ward off chronic foot problems with this massage ball therapy set that works out stressed foot muscles. Each ball and roller in the set targets a different area of the foot for all-over relief.

Find It at Amazon for $19 and also at these other retailers:

7. Nordictrack C990 Treadmill

A woman runs on the NordicTrack C990 treadmill
Amazon

For runners faced with subzero temperatures or pressed for time, a quality treadmill can make sure they stick to a routine. Avoid lower-quality treadmills with the C990, a well-built, adjustable-incline unit that brings commercial gym reliability at a reasonable price. The 7-inch, web-enabled touchscreen lets users follow workout programs. Pavement hard on the feet? You can opt for underfoot cushioning that lightens foot impact on the treadmill surface. It’s the complete package.

Find It at Amazon for $999.

8. Higo LED Slap Armband

A woman wears the Higo LED slap armband
Amazon

Sometimes schedules necessitate getting a run in at night, but visibility can be a concern. Light up so drivers can see you with this LED armband that easily “slaps” over your wrists or arm without the need to tie or secure straps. You can even set the bands to blink to make sure you don’t go unnoticed while jogging along roads.

Find It at Amazon at $7 and also at these other retailers:

9. Remodeez Odor Eliminator

Remodeez Odor Eliminators are tucked inside shoes and sneakers
Amazon

Stinky soles are a badge of honor for runners, but their spouses, kids, and pets probably don’t appreciate the stench. Kill unwanted odors with these reusable odor eliminators, which use activated charcoal to absorb rather than just cover unwanted smells.

Find It at Amazon for $10 and also at these other retailers:

10. The Complete Runner's Day-by-day Log 2019 Calendar

A look at the front cover of the Runner's Log 2019 calendar
Amazon

Give runners a sense of accomplishment with this daily log that allows them to record run stats and read motivational quotes to keep them moving.

Find It at Amazon for $10 and also at these other retailers:

11. Goodr OG Sunglasses

A pair of Goodr OG sunglasses sit on top of a beer cooler
GOODR

Avoid harsh sunlight with these delightfully retro glasses that disguise a high level of performance. Goodr’s line resists bouncing against your nose and won’t slip off during sprints.

Find It at Goodr for $25.

Keep Your Pet Entertained While You’re Away With This Robotic Ball Toy

Cheerble
Cheerble

The ball is as simple as pet toys come, but even the classic design can be improved upon. Some of the hottest pet accessories on the market today are interactive toys, like Kong chew toys and other puzzle items with room for treats inside. Unlike those products, this ball doesn't cease being entertaining the moment your pet solves a puzzle. The Wicked Ball, currently raising money on Indiegogo, rolls, bounces, and holds your cat or dog's attention all on its own.

Though it looks like a regular ball, the Wicked Ball is actually a robotic toy. A motorized wheel propels the ball around your home, distracting your pet from any trouble it might get into when no one's looking. The gadget can be set to three modes: gentle, normal, and active. In addition to rolling, the ball also vibrates and bounces across the ground to keep things interesting for animals.

Dog with robotic ball toy.
Cheerble

The Wicked Ball is designed to be totally autonomous, so pet owners can rest easy leaving their pet alone with it at home. A built-in collision sensor helps make this possible by alerting the ball to incoming walls and objects so it can avoid getting stuck in tight places. The toys runs on a battery that charges via a USB cord. After charging for an hour, the Wicked Ball lasts for 100 minutes of continuous play. If your pet spends as much time chasing the ball as it does taking breaks, as is typical, the charge will last four hours. Even when it's shut off, a plug in the side of the toy can be filled with treats to keep pets occupied.

The toy is available in a colorful plastic shell for dogs and a gray wool coating for cats. You can purchase either version on Indiegogo for pledge of $34, with shipping estimated for August.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we choose all products independently and only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

Fuel Your Cold Brew Obsession With This Elegant, Efficient Coffee Maker

Brrrewer
Brrrewer

The sun is scorching, the days are endless, and the gentle clinking of ice cubes in a glass of cold brew coffee sounds like chimes at the gates of heaven itself.

A beverage so divine deserves to be created by a machine to match, right? Meet Brrrewer, a coffee maker that will provide you with the smoothest, sweetest, richest cold brew coffee you’ve ever had—and it’ll do it in just four hours.

Brrrewer uses the cold drip method to brew coffee in which coffee grounds are suspended between two microfilter membranes. Water is poured over the top membrane, then slowly filters through the coffee grounds and drips out from the bottom membrane. The top membrane ensures that the water is evenly distributed among the coffee grounds, and the bottom membrane allows only the water-turned-coffee to fall into the carafe below, without any of the gritty residue. (That gritty residue is often a result of the full immersion method, which is popular among those with French presses; basically, you just steep your coffee grounds in cold water for 12 to 24 hours, strain out the grounds, and drink.)

The carafe is encased in a second layer of glass, providing thermal insulation and keeping your coffee cold for longer than a regular glass bottle or pitcher. And you can cross “coffee filters” off your shopping list—the microfilter membranes do that job already.

The Italy-based team at Essense designed Brrrewer with elegance and minimalism in mind, so it won’t throw off the aesthetic groove of your kitchen. In fact, it might enhance it. Also, it’s manufactured from a combination of borosilicate glass and BPA-free Tritan plastic; in other words, it’s extra-sturdy and environmentally friendly.

Mixologist Francesco Corona, five-time Italian “Coffee in Good Spirits” champion and world championship finalist, worked with Essense to develop special cocktail recipes for Brrrewer, which you can find in the paperback book, available on its own for $17 or with Brrrewer (the book and coffee maker combo is $78). Order Brrrewer by itself for $67 here, or see other purchase options from Kickstarter.

If four hours is more than you’re willing to wait for cold brew, check out Ninja’s Hot & Cold Brewed System, which can make it in about 15 minutes.

Mental Floss has affiliate relationships with certain retailers and may receive a small percentage of any sale. But we choose all products independently and only get commission on items you buy and don’t return, so we’re only happy if you’re happy. Thanks for helping us pay the bills!

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