Vitamins & Minerals

The 50 Greatest Fitness Gifts for Every Budget (2020)

Buying fitness gifts can be tricky.

Not because there’s a shortage of ideas, mind you—a quick internet search will unearth a slew of articles and blog posts about the best gifts for gymgoers.

The problem is the recommendations in these articles are geared toward “less discerning” fitness folk, if you know what I mean: 

Ankle weights, cutesy water bottles, recycled bamboo t-shirts, gaudy gym bags, and other gewgaws that will probably end their lives moldering in a garage somewhere.

The gifts in this article are different. 

Instead of your typical bric-a-brac, you’ll find the 50 best gifts that fitness folk will actually appreciate and use for years to come. 

Let’s begin . . . 

Whether you’re a guy or gal who wants to build muscle, lose fat, and get healthy; an intermediate or advanced lifter looking to take your physique to the next level; or a fitness fanatic who wants to read, understand, and apply scientific research to get fitter, healthier, and happier, Mike’s got a book for you.

Here are a few of his most popular works: 

2. A Fitness Research Review Subscription (Starting ~$10/month)

Wading through scientific research on health and fitness can be a slog—especially if you haven’t read a book like Fitness Science Explained.

Luckily, there are a few notable research reviews that break down the most interesting, useful, and recent studies on strength, muscle gain, and nutrition, so you can understand and apply their findings in the gym and the kitchen.

If giving the gift of knowledge sounds good to you, check out these research review subscriptions:

Wrist wraps are a godsend for gymgoers who like to press and squat heavy. Not only do they support the wrist and help prevent injury while bench and overhead pressing, they help stabilize your wrists when low-bar back squatting, which can greatly reduce wrist and elbow discomfort. 

These wraps from DMoose are heavy duty, professional grade, and come in a bunch of fun designs.

It’s hard to find a more hackneyed Christmas gift than a pair of socks.

Deadlift socks, however, are a different animal. They’re worn to protect your skin from the nasty scrapes you often get from a barbell’s nurling when you deadlift

And why not just wear pants or leggings? Well, both can be hot and uncomfortable to wear while training, and barbells can easily grind through a nice pair of leggings, which makes socks the ideal solution.

These deadlift socks from MOXY Socks are durable, comfortable, and come in a vintage 70s design.

A good set of resistance bands aren’t only useful for workouts at home or when traveling, they’re also great for warming up, stretching, and adding (or decreasing) resistance on many exercises in the gym, too. 

These bands from Draper’s Strength are extremely durable, and come in sets of three, four, five, or six bands, which means you’ll always be able to find the right band for the job.

Rest times between sets of deadlifts should be sacrosanct—a time to catch your breath, fire yourself up for your next set, and visualize proper technique (and maybe surf some articles, like this one 😉 ).

Unfortunately, unless you go to a gym that has a deadlift jack (a metal frame used to hoist the barbell a few inches off the floor so that you can load the plates more easily), you’ll be spending a lot of energy between sets loading and unloading the bar. 

Of course, the energy you use loading weights is energy that could be put into lifting the damn thing in your next set.

That’s why the Dead Wedge Deadlift Jack is such an amazing product—it raises the plates about an inch off the floor for easy loading, and stops the bar from rolling around while you load it, making the whole process quicker, easier, and safer.

Food scales are the perfect gift for anyone who takes meal planning and prepping seriously. This one from Ozeri is sleek, simple, accurate, comes in many different colors, and is ridiculously reliable—I’ve had mine for almost five years and it’s still ticking.

Weightlifting straps help lock the barbell or dumbbell against your hand while performing certain exercises.

Many people shy away from straps because they look at it as a form of “cheating” and making exercises like the deadlift “easier.”

While I wouldn’t advise someone new to weightlifting to use straps right from the get go, I disagree that straps don’t have a place in a serious weightlifter’s gym bag.

When used properly, straps allow you to safely pull more weight (making the deadlift harder on the rest of your body, I might add) without any of the downsides of the mixed and hook grips.

These straps from Harbinger are ideal: they’re cheap, durable, and versatile, which is all we really want from a strap. 

That said, if you’re looking for something a little plusher, these leather straps from Harbinger are a nice alternative. The leather’s texture provides even more friction, and since they’re leather, they conform to the shape of your hands over time, making them more comfortable.

Estimating body fat percentage from caliper measurements is hit or miss, but the measurements themselves are quite useful.

If your skin is getting thicker over time, you’re gaining fat. If it’s getting thinner, you’re losing fat. And that’s all you really need to know to measure your progress.

This caliper from Accu-Measure is endorsed by the World Natural Bodybuilding Federation as the premiere body fat caliper on the market, probably because it’s easy to use, accurate, and affordable. 

Reusing single-use water bottles isn’t just unhygienic—a lot of those bottles are difficult to clean—the chemicals that leach from the plastic after several uses may be detrimental to your health.

The Camelbak Eddy+ water bottle, however, is free from any harmful chemicals, easy to carry, drink from, and clean, and comes in a range of colors to suit everyone’s tastes.

Prepping your meals ahead of time is one of the best ways to make sure you hit your macronutrient targets every day.

To do it effectively, though, you need containers that can be easily stored, and that are safe to use in the freezer, dishwasher, and microwave.

These meal prep containers from Freshware fit the bill perfectly, and even include two separate compartments for keeping your main and side dishes separate.

Sometimes going to the gym to do cardio is inconvenient or impractical, especially when your schedule is crammed with holiday commitments.

A potential solution? 

Jump rope at home. 

Jumping rope not only burns a ton of calories, but it also improves your hand-eye coordination and gives you nearly endless new challenges in the form of new jumps, faster or slower speeds, and so forth. 

This jump rope from WOD Nation is all you need to get your cardio done at home using minimal space and equipment.

Kettlebells may look a bit goofy, but they’re a very useful training tool for everyone from novices to veteran weightlifters. You can use them to target every muscle group in your body and build strength while increasing endurance.

In fact, kettlebell workouts are so effective they’ve been a primary tool in Russian bodybuilding and strength training since the 1700s. The term Girevik, traditionally used for only the strongest Russian men, actually translates to “kettlebell man.”

Some people enjoy using kettlebell exercises as their primary form of resistance training, in which case heavier weights are used. Others prefer to use kettlebell workouts as a form of whole-body circuit cardio, which calls for lighter weights and more repetitions.

SPRI have a great range of kettlebells that feature thick, authentic handles, and are coated in vinyl so they won’t scratch up your floor.

This Chef’n VeggieChop hand-powered food chopper is an absolute godsend for meal preppers.

With just a few pulls of the handle, it chops and minces just about anything that you would normally have to do by hand, including veggies, fruits, herbs, and nuts.

It’s cheap, simple, and easy to clean. I highly recommend it. 

You work hard to build a body you can be proud of, so why not wear clothing that highlights it?

If you agree, then you’ll love Legion’s entire range of apparel. Will it help you hit new PRs? Probably not. Will it help you look good while doing so? Absolutely.

Sweaty palms can ruin your reps and make it impossible to deadlift a heavy barbell (if you’re lifting without straps). 

Chalk solves this problem by absorbing moisture and increasing friction between your palm and the weight you’re holding. 

Chalk can even improve your performance on exercises that don’t rely on grip strength. For example, moisture on your rear delts while squatting can make the bar slip down your back, spoiling your rep. 

Thus, it’s a good idea to always have chalk in your gym bag. 

The problem with regular, powdered chalk, though, is that it makes a mess. 

Luckily, liquid chalk fixes this. It’s much easier to apply than powdered chalk, which means you don’t have to use as much; it creates less of a mess; and it’s more compact and easier to carry around. 

You can find many brands of liquid chalk, but I prefer Liquid Grip, which costs less per ounce than most other brands and has a pleasant, coconut scent. 

Despite the female-centric marketing, “booty bands” can be used by anyone—not just girls looking to grow a big butt. That said, if you are a girl looking to grow a big booty . . . these bands from SPAWN Fitness will help. 

For everyone else, “booty bands” can be used for a number of glute activation exercises, which research shows are particularly useful if you feel that your glutes aren’t firing hard during squats, deadlifts, or pretty much any activity that requires explosive lower-body movement. 

Blood flow restriction (BFR) training, also known as occlusion training, is a method of training whereby bands are used to restrict the blood flow to the limbs you’re exercising. 

While it smacks of artifice, there’s actually quite a lot of research that shows adding BFR sets to heavy traditional sets can increase strength more than heavy training alone.

Admittedly, this type of training isn’t for novice-level lifters, but if you’re a more advanced trainee, or suffering from an injury that prevents you from lifting heavy, BFR training might have a place in your routine.

These BFR bands are perfect for the job, and are a great stocking stuffer for anyone looking to get swole.

A yoga mat might not be the first thing you think of when you look for gifts for people who are into strength training, but they actually come in handy for a bunch of things, including mobility work and stretching, ab exercises, and . . . yoga (yes, meatheads can do yoga, too).

This mat from Gaiam is particularly thick (⅖ inches), which means it’s extra comfortable, even when you use it on solid gym flooring. 

Having vice-like grip strength is more important than you might think. 

Yes, it’ll help with all of your pulling exercises, like deadlifts and rows . . . it’ll give you forearms that make Popeye jealous . . . and it’ll help you perform better in any sport that requires you to grab a hold of someone, like football, rugby, or jiu-jitsu. 

But what you might not realize is that having a strong grip is associated with living a longer, healthier life. 

One of the easiest ways to make big gains in the grip department is to attach some Fat Gripz to the bar or dumbbells next time you do pull-ups, chin-ups, rows, bicep curls, or skull crushers. 

So, if you want to perform better, improve the overall appearance of your arms, and live a longer and healthier life, this is the gift for you.

Supplements aren’t nearly as important as some people would have you believe. 

That said, you should consider including a few choice supplements in your regimen because scientific research has proven they can help you lose fat and build muscle faster, boost workout performance and post-workout recovery, and improve your general health and well-being.

Here are some of the most popular options:

Whey+ is a 100% natural whey isolate protein powder made with exceptionally high-quality milk from small, sustainable dairy farms in Ireland.

It’s also naturally sweetened and flavored and contains no artificial food dyes, fillers, or other unnecessary junk.

I can confidently say that this is the creamiest, tastiest, healthiest all-natural whey protein powder you can find. What’s more, you can choose from over a dozen different flavors of Whey+, including French Vanilla, Mocha Cappuccino, and Cinnamon Cereal.

Pulse is a 100% natural pre-workout drink that increases energy, improves mood, sharpens mental focus, increases strength and endurance, and reduces fatigue.

Pulse is also naturally sweetened and flavored and contains no artificial food dyes, fillers, or other unnecessary junk.

All that is why Pulse is the #1 bestselling all-natural pre-workout in the world, with thousands of five-star reviews from raving fans.

Triumph is a sport multivitamin that enhances health, performance, and mood and reduces stress, fatigue, and anxiety.

In other words, Triumph helps produce a healthier, happier body that’s more resistant to stress, dysfunction, and disease. What’s more, it also comes in two formulations: one optimized for men, and one optimized for women.

Immune is a 100% natural immune support supplement that improves the immune system’s ability to find and eliminate pathogens, impairs the function of harmful bacteria and viruses, and enhances mood and well-being when sick.

And you probably don’t need me to tell you that people will appreciate getting Immune in their stocking now more than ever.

Phoenix is a 100% natural fat burner that speeds up your metabolism, enhances fat burning, and reduces hunger and cravings. 

Phoenix also contains no caffeine or other harsh or dangerous stimulants, which means you get to enjoy faster fat loss without unwanted side effects like jitters, upset stomachs, or nausea.

Gadgets that make cooking easier are always a great gift idea for anyone who prepares their own meals, which is why this Hamilton Beach Digital Programmable Rice Cooker & Food Steamer is on this list.

As well as cooking perfect rice, you can steam veggies, seafood, whole grains, and hot cereals, all with the touch of a few buttons.

Constant heavy lifting can leave your body feeling banged up and in need of some TLC, and one of the best ways to give it some is with a touch of “self-myofascial release.”

With just a little bit of regular foam rolling, you can greatly reduce muscle tightness, diminish inflammation and pain, and improve mobility. Plus it just feels good. That’s why a high-quality foam roller is a must for anyone who lifts on the regular.

This foam roller from TriggerPoint has different surfaces in a grid layout, which let you apply different amounts and types of pressure on your muscles.  

Caffeine is a stimulant that increases resistance to fatigue, boosts strength and power, reduces perceived effort, and improves cognition and alertness and yada yada yada. 

Let’s be real, though: you don’t need a pEeR rEvIeWeD scientific study to know that coffee is delicious and makes your workouts more enjoyable. 

If you want to brew a great tasting cup of joe before your workouts, check out the Aerobie AeroPress

The Aerobie AeroPress is an innovative coffee maker that’s perfect for brewing 1 to 4 cups of coffee or espresso. In just a few minutes, it produces coffee and espresso that’s rich in flavor with low acidity and bitterness.

An ab roller, also known as an ab wheel, is a small wheel with handles on either side of the axle that allows you to do a classic unweighted ab exercise called the abdominal rollout. 

There are plenty of other abdominal exercises you can do, but ab rollouts are effective, fun, and don’t require much space, which makes them perfect for a home gym.

I recommend the Perfect Fitness Ab Carver Pro Roller. It looks cool, the handles are comfortable, and it’s designed in such a way that you don’t need quite as much balance as with other similar rollers.

If, however, you want a more affordable option, go with the Fitnessery Ab Wheel.

If your workouts are limited to bodyweight exercises at the moment, and you’re trying to find ways to make press-ups, pull-ups, and squats more difficult, look no further than this weighted vest.

This one from RUNmax has pockets on the front and back to ensure the weight is evenly distributed, and comes with pockets for your phone and water bottle if you want to wear it while walking, hiking, or running.

Contrary to popular belief, knee sleeves aren’t worn to improve performance, but rather for the way they make your knees feel more comfortable, stable, and supported during heavy leg exercises, like squats, deadlifts, lunges, and leg press. That said, some powerlifters like to intentionally wear super tight sleeves to give them just a little extra rebound out of the bottom of the squat.

These Rehband knee sleeves are a robust and comfortable option, just be sure to buy two if you get them, since they’re sold in singles.

Dips are an outstanding exercise for building bigger pecs, triceps, and shoulders, but they can also be difficult and uncomfortable to load. 

Some people add weight by pinching a dumbbell between their legs, which is uncomfortable and impractical with heavy weights. A dip belt—which is just a heavy duty belt usually made of leather or nylon attached to a chain—solves this problem.   

In fact, I replaced bench pressing in my workouts with weighted dips for about two years while I worked around a shoulder injury, and in that time I tested out just about every dip belt you can imagine. 

I also broke about five different dip belts in the process before I found a good one: The Rogue Dip Belt. Yes, it’s expensive compared to many other options, but it’s worth every penny. 

The lightest weight plates in most weight sets are 2.5 pounds, which means the smallest increase in weight you can make is usually 5 pounds (one 2.5 pound plate on each side of the bar). 

When you’re a newbie, adding 5 to 10 pounds to the bar every week or two is easy, which means you can get by with standard weight plates. 

Once your newbie gains are gone, though, you’ll have to accept that you won’t set new personal records (PRs) every week. Instead, it will be more like every 4, 8, or 12 weeks . . . or even longer if you’re cutting.

What’s more, sometimes moving up in weight on a big lift by 5 or 10 pounds can be tremendously difficult, and you can “unstick” yourself by moving up by just 2.5 pounds.

That’s where fractional plates come in handy. They allow you to keep progressively overloading your muscles in small increments, which is what you have to do as you inch closer to your natural ceiling for muscle and strength gain.

Most fractional plate sets include plates that range from 0.25 to 1 pound, which allows you to add anywhere from 0.5 to 2 pounds to the bar.

I recommend the Ader Fitness fractional plates. They’re carefully machined out of high-grade steel, meticulously calibrated to within 0.1 to 1% of the advertised weight, and they look nice.

If you want to “microload” dumbbells, I also recommend you use PlateMate’s magnetic fractional plates ($33.67), which you can stick on either side of a dumbbell. If you plan on using these for exercises that require two dumbbells (like the dumbbell bench press), make sure you buy two pairs (one pair for each dumbbell). 

Give the gift of bathroom scales to some people, and it might be taken as an unwelcome and rather offensive hint. Give the gift of bathroom scales to a fitness fanatic, though, and you’ll likely be warmly embraced—especially if they’re as cool as this one from Withings.

The Withings Body Smart Weight & BMI Wi-Fi Digital Scale tracks your weight changes over time and syncs with your smartphone, so whether you’re bulking or cutting, you can see a detailed breakdown of how your weight is changing using their free app.

You can find more expensive digital scales that claim to estimate your body fat percentage, but none of these are particularly accurate, which is why I recommend you save your money and get this one instead.

Serious about meal prepping but find it hard to take all your delicious dishes with you wherever you go?

If so, the ThinkFit Meal Prep Bag might just be the perfect solution.

There’s ample space to store all the food and supplements you need each day, and with the help of the two preloaded ice packs and double insulated fabric, your snacks and meals will stay fresh all day long.

Many people hate traditional forms of cardio and conditioning, and relish the opportunity to do something that’s fun and benefits their performance in the weight room. 

Sandbag workouts can be done in any outdoor space, and since many of the exercise you can do with them require you to use lots of full-body strength and power (like squats, lunges, over-the-shoulders, weighted carries, and presses of all kinds), they have a lot of carryover to your normal weight training.

Rogue sandbags are fantastic, with numerous different options for all strength levels (if you’re an intermediate or advanced lifter, 150 pounds is probably a good starting point).

When used properly, weightlifting belts improve your performance on key lifts like the squat and deadlift, and if you invest in a good one, it’ll last decades.

The premium leather used for this Inzer belt is 10 mm thick, which makes it much sturdier and more supportive than the cheap leather belts you find on Amazon, but also not quite as stiff and uncomfortable as thicker (13 mm) powerlifting belts. 

The slightly thinner profile will also help the belt conform to the shape of your body faster, making it more comfortable over time. 

The patented heavy-duty Forever Lever buckle also makes this belt much easier and faster to take on and off between sets than traditional prong-style buckles.

Massage gun therapy is probably about as effective as getting a traditional massage for quickening recovery, improving mobility, and lowering stress levels. The advantage of massage guns is that they’re far more convenient and cost effective than hiring a massage therapist.

This massage gun from FITINDEX is quiet, light, and has a long-lasting battery, and at just under $100, is well-priced compared to many other massage guns on the market.

That said, if you want to splurge on a higher-end model, check out the Theragun PRO. Not only is the Theragun PRO more powerful, and thus able to reach deeper into muscles than most other massage guns, its ergonomic design makes it more comfortable to use than many other models.

If you love fried food but don’t want to consume boatloads of grease and fat, you’re going to love the COSORI Air Fryer Max XL.

As the name suggests, this device fries foods with little to no oil by circulating extremely hot air and a mist of oil over them. The result is crispy goodness using just a tablespoon of oil or less.

Most fitness gift guides include some kind of calorie counting, activity tracking, do-everything smartwatch, and here I am recommending a plain ol’ Casio G-Shock.

What gives?

Well, let’s be frank here: smart watches might look cool and have a million fancy-sounding features, but how many of them are actually useful for working out? 

Not many.

The activity tracking features are inaccurate, the heart rate monitors are unnecessary, the calorie counting features are limited, and they’re so damn expensive that most people are scared to death they’ll damage them while training.

The Casio G-Shock GD350-1B is virtually indestructible, relatively low-cost, has everything you want from a watch (it’s waterproof, shockproof, has a stopwatch, and a countdown timer), and has a very useful vibrate function that alerts you when your rest time is over by jiggling your wrist instead of beeping every three to five minutes.

What’s the key ingredient in any good protein shake, protein pancake mix, and protein ice cream recipe

Protein powder, of course—but you still need a good blender to make all of these recipes work.

The Ninja Pro Blender is a beast of a blender—it makes light work of ice cubes, frozen bananas, and any other blend-resistant ingredients you have.

Don’t let the affordable price tag fool you, either. The Ninja Pro Blender might not have all the bells and whistles of higher-priced blenders, but it’s just as good as its competitors at doing what’s important—blending.

The T-Fal Optigrill isn’t just another electric grill—it’s a “smart grill” that comes programmed with ideal cooking times and temperatures for a wide variety of items, such as fish, steak, poultry, and sandwiches.

It features a large cooking surface (enough to cook a 3 to 4 portion meal), as well as removable non-stick grill plates for easy cleaning, and an adjustable hinge for thicker cuts of meat. Fat drippings are caught in a large drip tray for quick disposal, too.

Given the uncertainty surrounding gym openings at the moment, it makes sense to have some workout equipment at home that takes up as little space as possible, but that offers you the most options in terms of exercise selection. With that in mind, you’d be hard pressed to find a better piece of equipment than the Pull Up Mate.

The Pull Up Mate lets you perform pull-ups, dips, inverted rows, and modified push-ups on a portable frame that you can put together or take apart in minutes.

If you don’t have the floor space for something like the Pull Up Mate, but you’re looking for something you can do pull-ups with, there are also some good pull-up bars that you can wedge in a door frame, like this one from ProsourceFit.

If your workouts involve heavy squats, and/or bench and overhead presses, you want to be wearing a pair of weightlifting shoes.

Weightlifting shoes have hard, noncompressible soles that give you a wide, rock-solid, and consistent base to push off of. 

The increased stability during your big lifts is something you immediately notice when you make the switch, and they also have a slightly elevated heel (0.5 to 1 inch of elevation) that allows you to more easily squat into a deep position while keeping your chest upright.

The Adidas Adipower is the best in the game—well designed, sturdy, durable, comfortable, good traction, and great looking . . . What else could you want?

No gift guide in 2020 would be complete without the inclusion of some wireless headphones.

Not only are these Jaybird Vista wireless headphones exceptionally light (6 grams per bud), they sound great, and they’re fully waterproof, crushproof, drop-proof, and sweatproof.

Rucking is a type of exercise that involves walking or running with a weighted backpack, and is one of the foundations of military training. Recently, it’s become more popular with fitness folks who want to add intensity to hikes, runs, or circuit workouts.

The Rucker 3.0 from GORUCK is the best ruck pack on the market. It’s built like a tank, features extra handles to make it easier to use the pack for a variety of exercises, and has extra lumbar support to increase comfort during long rucks. 

If you’re looking for a good rucksack with a design that’s more suited to everyday use, check out their GR1 pack, too. 

When it comes to ruck plates, you don’t need to buy anything expensive. Yes4All Ruck Plates are a fraction of the cost of more expensive options and work just as well. If you aren’t sure which plate to buy, start with a 25-pound plate if you’re a man, and a 15-pound plate if you’re a woman. 

If you like outdoor sports, you know how important it is to have a good pair of sunglasses.

The Oakley Radar EV Path Sunglasses are in a word—perfect. They’re so light and comfortable you forget you’re wearing them, the earsocks and nose piece keep them in place even when you’re drenched with sweat, and the lenses feature specially designed vents to keep them from fogging without letting in sunlight. 

What’s more, you can easily change lenses to suit different weather conditions. 

If you know anyone who likes to spend time outside, they’ll love the Oakley Radar EV Path sunglasses.

There are countless sleep and health trackers available these days, but the Oura Ring is a standout.

It’s about the size of a large wedding band, and it works by measuring the amount of infrared light that passes through your skin to track your breathing rate, heart rate, and heart-rate variability. 

All this data is collected, analyzed, and sent to an app on your smartphone, which you can use to monitor things like length and quality of sleep.

Indoor cycling is a great form of cardio for a few reasons:

  • It’s relatively low-impact, and research also shows that cycling doesn’t interfere with muscle and strength gain like running does.
  • It burns a ton of calories (especially if you use toe clips).
  • It’s more comfortable and easier for me to recover from than running, especially for HIIT workouts.
  • It’s extremely space efficient.
  • It’s easier to listen to music or watch T.V. while cycling than running, since your upper body remains stable.

The Sunny Health & Fitness Spin Bike is a great budget option, but if you want the best bike you can buy, check out the Keiser M3i Indoor Bicycle. Although it’s considerably more expensive, it’s stylish, durable, easy to store, gives you tons of data about your workouts, and is at the top of almost every “best indoor bike” review you can find.

If you like to track your runs, hikes, and other activities in the great outdoors, the Garmin Forerunner 945 is for you.

It measures your performance, plays your favourite music, displays maps, tracks your whereabouts, and looks pretty swanky, too. It also features Bluetooth connectivity, which allows it to sync with many other tracking devices like speedometers, power meters, and so forth.  

Having a good set of adjustable dumbbells is one of the best investments you can make if you like to work out at home. The range of exercises you can do is huge, and they cost less and take up less space than a complete set of dumbbells.

I recommend either the adjustable dumbbells from Bowflex or PowerBlock. The ones from Bowflex feel a bit more natural to me, but both are great products. The set from PowerBlock only goes up to 50 pounds, so I recommend you get the 70 to 90-pound expansion kit if the 50-pound dumbbells are too light for you.

A power rack, also called a squat rack, is a sturdy metal frame usually about eight feet tall, four feet wide, and three to six feet long with adjustable hooks to hold a barbell and safety bars to allow for safe solo weightlifting. 

If you’re into strength training, a solid power rack is one of the most important pieces of gym equipment you’ll ever own, so it’s worth buying one that’ll last. “Buy once, cry once,” and all that. 

I recommend the Rogue RM-3 Monster Rack. It’s one of the sturdiest designs out there, with overbuilt bolts and wider struts, so you can rest assured that it’s not going to fall apart. 

Getting out for long bike rides is more difficult than normal during the holidays, what with the weather and social obligations. 

And for serious cyclists, there’s no better solution than the TacX Neo 2T Smart Trainer.

The TacX Neo 2T Smart Trainer is the quietest bike trainer around, and comes with a bunch of nifty features, like pedal stroke and power analysis, an unrivalled ride feel, and a neat, foldable design. Yes, it’s expensive, but you’ll know where your money went with the first pedal stroke. 

If running or walking is your cardio of choice and you’d prefer to do it from the warmth and comfort of your own home, then a treadmill is a worthwhile investment.

I recommend the Sole F85 Treadmill because it’s durable, quiet (some treadmills are unbearably loud), and comes with some neat features like a built-in heart rate monitor, cooling fans, and MP3-compatible sound system.

If you want a more affordable option, go with the NordicTrack T 6.5 S Treadmill. Yes, that’s still a chunk of change, but if you’re going to the trouble of installing and storing a treadmill, you’ll want to get something nice.

The Bottom Line on the Best Fitness Gifts

Now you have no excuse for not getting the right gifts for your friends and family. 🙂

Seriously, though, I hope you or your loved ones are able to use some of the doodads on this list to get fitter and healthier faster and easier. 

And if you’d like a quick summary of all of the options one more time, here you go: 

  1. A Fitness Book from Mike Matthews
  2. A Fitness Research Review Subscription (such as MASS Research Review, Alan Aragon’s Research Review, or Weightology )
  3. DMoose Wrist Wraps
  4. MOXY Deadlift Socks
  5. Draper’s Strength Resistance Bands
  6. Dead Wedge Deadlift Jack
  7. Ozeri Digital Food Scale
  8. Harbinger Nylon or Leather Weightlifting Straps
  9. Accu-Measure Body Fat Caliper
  10. Camelbak Eddy+ Water Bottle
  11. Freshware Meal Prep Containers
  12. WOD Nation Adjustable Jump Rope
  13. SPRI Kettlebells
  14. Chef’n VeggiChop Food Chopper
  15. Legion Apparel
  16. Liquid Grip Liquid Chalk
  17. SPAWN Fitness Booty Bands
  18. BFR Bands
  19. Gaiam Yoga Mat
  20. Fat Gripz
  21. Legion Supplements (such as Whey+ Protein Powder, Pulse Pre-workout, Triumph, Immune, or Phoenix)
  22. Hamilton Beach Programmable Rice Cooker
  23. TriggerPoint Foam Roller
  24. AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker
  25. An Ab Wheel (such as the Perfect Fitness Ab Carver or the Fitnessery Ab Wheel)
  26. RUNmax Pro Weighted Vest
  27. Rehband Knee sleeves
  28. Rogue Dip Belt
  29. Ader Fitness Fractional Plates or PlateMate’s Magnetic Fractional Plates
  30. Withings Body Smart Weight & BMI Wi-Fi Digital Scale
  31. ThinkFit Meal Prep Bag
  32. Rogue Sandbags
  33. Inzer Forever Lever Weightlifting Belt
  34. A FITINDEX or Theragun PRO Massage Gun
  35. COSORI Air Fryer Max XL
  36. Casio G-Shock GD350-1B
  37. Ninja Pro Blender
  38. The T-Fal Optigrill Countertop Grill
  39. A Pull Up Mate or ProsourceFit Pull-Up Bar
  40. Adidas Adipower Weightlifting Shoes
  41. Jaybird Vista Wireless Headphones
  42. GORUCK Rucker 3.0 Rucking Backpack and Yes4All Ruck Plates
  43. Oakley Radar EV Path Sunglasses
  44. Oura Ring Sleep and Health Tracker
  45. An Exercise Bike (such as the Sunny Health & Fitness Spin Bike or the Keiser M3i Indoor Bicycle
  46. Garmin Forerunner 945 
  47. Adjustable Dumbbells (such as Bowflex or PowerBlock)
  48. Rogue RM-3 Monster Rack
  49. TacX Neo 2T Smart Trainer
  50. A Treadmill (such as the Sole F85 Treadmill or the NordicTrack T 6.5 S Treadmill)

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