Shortly after writing an article highlighting unique gifts for fitness buffs, my staff gave me one of the most unique gifts ever. It’s a wooden plaque with an inspirational saying, and hooks to hold my race medals and race numbers. It’s obvious that there are many unique gifts out there, so here are some ideas for the fitness buff on your Christmas list.

  • A quilt made from race t-shirts or t-shirts with inspirational sayings. Look at Pinterest for DIY instructions or check locally to find a quilter who can make this.
  • Pouch for your phone. I have never liked running armbands for phones because they rub my arm. Waistbands rub my waist. But I love the Buddy Pouch by Running Buddy, which is a magnetic pouch that clips onto the waistband of my shorts. I hardly realize I’m wearing it. Rubbing problem solved.
  • Handmade items are unique gifts. Sites like Etsy feature t-shirts, jewelry, running medal plaques, water bottles, head bands, clocks, posters and much more, plus many can be personalized making them even more special.
  • Wireless headsets. These eliminate the wires that become tangled or that flop around when running. Options abound. My preference is the Reverb Active X Wireless, ear buds connected to a solid, wraparound piece of plastic.
  • Glow shoe clip. One Christmas my husband gave me several glow-in-the-dark bands to wear around my arms when I ran before sun-up. They rubbed my arm. The glow shoe clip hooks on the back of your running shoes so you can be seen and they eliminate the problem of rubbing.
  • Blender for smoothies. Julie Hartley, Willis-Knighton dietitian, recommends a high-speed blender. The common brands include Nutribullet, Ninja, Vitamix and Blendtec. Some are pricier than others but Julie said that you “need the speed in order to blend the greens.” Add a container of protein powder and a recipe to make the gift even better. Here’s one Julie suggests.

Beginner Green Protein Smoothie

  • 16 ounces purified water
  • 1 serving of high-quality, GMO-free, vanilla protein powder
  • 1 small frozen banana
  • ½ small avocado (or ¼ of a large one)
  • 1 cup spinach (you can also substitute 2 teaspoons of chlorophyll if you are not ready for the leafy greens)
  • 8 ice cubes

Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth.

I am never happier than when I receive a gift I can truly use. Make this Christmas one to remember for the fitness buff or athlete in your life by giving them something that’s not just memorable but useful.

FITNESS TIP: WK Dietitian Julie Hartley recommends this formula for the novice smoothie maker: 3:1 ratio of greens to fruit. “Beginners may need to start with 1:3 to get used to the flavor of blended greens,” she adds.