Are you wondering what to get your favorite fitness enthusiast this holiday season? Well, here are a few of my favorite things!
1. Personal Training – Chances are you and your loved one have set weight loss goals for 2014. Sure, a gym membership is a great gift, but did you know that gym business models set you up to fail? Studies have shown that people who work with personal trainers lose more weight more effectively and healthier than those who try to do it themselves. Most people who walk into a gym have no clue what to do in a gym (and most think they know). I have seen it firsthand when I worked in a gym. A person walks in, looks around with doe eyes, walks tentatively over to a treadmill, runs on it for 20 minutes, heads over to the weight section, pumps out some biomechanically incorrect biceps curls, and then heads over to the stretching area to give themself whiplash while attempting to do “proper” crunches. A large majority of people have no clue what to do in a gym to “get the biggest bang for their buck.” Why not buy them some sessions with a personal trainer, so your loved one can start 2014 on the right foot (with proper form!).
2. Valslides – These little sliders are the perfect stocking stuffers for any fitness enthusiast! Valislides are a great way to add challenge to any workout routine. You can use these in pushups, lunges, squats, etc. to add an element of imbalance to increase core muscle recruitment! Plus, you can tuck them into your gym bag without taking up a ton of space. You can purchase valslides through PerformBetter. Right now they are on sale for $24.00!
3. Jump Rope – Can’t afford a treadmill or elliptical machine for your home? Have no fear! For about $10 you can get the perfect cardio machine for your home. Not only is jump roping fun and a killer cardio workout, but it will increase your coordination, agility, quickness, footwork, and endurance. Can your treadmill do that? You can buy a jump rope pretty cheap at most department stores or you can purchase a higher quality one through any sporting store or PerformBetter.
4. Mini-bands – Ask any of my clients and they will tell you they have a love/hate relationship with me and my bands! I use mini-bands as a way to activate the gluteus muscles that are often very weak in the general population and athletes. Try 10 lateral steps with a mini-band around your ankles in each direction and you’ll be sure to feel your gluteus medius the next day! I use these as a pre-hab tool for all my athletes. You can buy them at Target or Dicks, but I find the PerformBetter mini-bands are a much better quality and last longer. They are the ultimate stocking stuffer at under $5.00 a piece!
5. Yoga Class Pass – Regular yoga practice is great for mind, body, and soul! I have really fallen in love with yoga this fall and it has helped with my hip issues. Plus, I love unwinding after a tough day at the office! I’m sure your fitness enthusiast would love a class pass to your local yoga studio! If you’re from the Greater Portland (Maine) area, then I highly recommend Greener Postures, Lila East End Yoga, and Portland Power Yoga.
6. Vitamix (or any quality blender) – Smoothies are a nutritious and quick way to get it one’s vegetables and fruits for the day! The Vitamix is the gold standard for a blender, but it is a costly investment. I personally have a Vitamix on my Santa Wish List this year! I’ve been using a Nutribullet for a few months and it works very well; however, it doesn’t quite get that perfect consistency I’m looking for in my smoothies. A Vitamix can also make almond butter and soup among other great recipes! It’s an investment worth a lifetime! Go to Vinnie Tortorich’s webpage to click-through his banner to get free shipping! Trust me, these things are heavier than a small pony!
7. Gift Cards – Gift cards are a great alternative, especially for clothing places. Just make sure you get a gift card to a place your loved one will use it! If all else fails, Amazon has just about anything you can buy! Except, for that magic weight loss pill you have been waiting for. Speaking on an Amazon gift card… your loved one can use it to buy the next item!
8. Fitness Confidential – I read a lot of health and fitness books each year and this one is by far one of my favorites. Vinnie Tortorich is the “Hollywood go to guy in fitness.” He works with all the big names, but you don’t know his name because he doesn’t sell his soul to the devil like Jillian Michaels and Bob Harper! Not only does Vinnie tell you like it is in his no bullshit attitude, he gives you some commonsense, easy-to-follow fitness and weight-loss advice. He also tells you a bit about his personal life and he is a remarkable guy. The book comes on multiple platforms… paperback, Kindle, or audiobook! I’ve read the Kindle version and I just started the audio version. You can buy the book at Amazon through THIS link.
9. TRX – Hands down, the TRX is my Favorite tool! My fitness philosophy very much falls in the functional training category and I utilize the TRX, kettlebells, bands, and medicine balls for all my personal and most of my clients workouts. The TRX can be used just about anywhere (the perfect gift for your traveling fitness enthusiast!) and provides the tools to do 100s of different bodyweight exercises to give your entire body a killer workout! The TRX is perfect for the beginner to the most advanced fitness enthusiasts! You can purchase the TRX through the TRX website or through PerformBetter.
10. Foam Rollers – Foam rolling is something that every fitness enthusiast and athlete dreads. Foam rolling is a form of self-myofascial release that works to inhibit overactive muscles. Foam rolling can be painful when you first begin, but overtime it does get better (I swear!). A foam roller is a great tool to help relieve tension and pain in certain body parts (however, you should always see a sports medicine doctor if you are having persistent pain!) and there are other tools you can use, such as “The Stick” and lacrosse balls. I highly recommend everyone have a foam roller at home. You can easily use it while watching tv! You can purchase one at any sporting store location, but I find that PerformBetter has better quality ones and they are generally cheaper than the ones at Dicks.
So here are my top 10 fitness gifts for 2013. What are you getting your favorite fitness enthusiast this year?
~ Happy Training!
Disclaimer: The above list contains items that I personally love and use. No one paid me to say the above comments and/or put an item on the list. The PerformBetter link is an affiliate link so if you would like to help me buy my poor dog a new bone for Christmas than please click through that link and go on a shopping spree! 🙂