On the hunt for the perfect gift? It’s an easy enough pursuit when you’re hanging out with your fit tribe, or #fitfam as they call it on the Internet these days. I know as my health and wellness journey evolved, so did my wishlist. All of a sudden, I was eyeing up kitchen appliances, GPS watches, funky leggings, and healthy foods in bulk on Amazon.
If you’re shopping for people who want to make 2016 their strongest year yet, here’s a quick healthy holiday shopping list to give you some good ideas.
You probably know someone who’s been saying for months how they’d love to get a FitBit. If they haven’t fulfilled their own wishes, get ’em one! I snagged one for my sister for a good price on Cyber Monday, but the sales aren’t over yet. Besides, investing in a pal’s health is so worth the splurge. This is ideal for the passionate fitness lover, your running buddy, or someone with a desk job who wants to fit in more steps throughout their day. Inspire someone to hit 10,000 everyday in 2016.
2. Instant Pot
This past week, I received not one, but TWO Instant Pots in the mail. ‘Tis the season for giving, and it was obvious to those around me what I truly wanted. While I’m conjuring up whether to gift the second one to someone else as passionate about meal prep as I am, the first has been in constant use since I opened the package. Bone broth? In a record time of 1.5 hours, and it might be the best batch I’ve ever made. Steamed veggies? Easier than the microwave I gave up years ago. I do love my slow-cooker, but the Instant Pot does what it can do and more in a small fraction of the time. Cooking large cuts of meat can be done in less than an hour with unbeatable flavor. This is the kitchen appliance to end all kitchen appliances – I could probably retire my oven and my stove at this point.
3. A New Cookbook
If you’re working on a slightly smaller budget, a decent cookbook can be all someone needs to start the new year off on the right foot. We all know January is a much more inspired month with New Year’s Resolutions still strong in our hearts. Here are a few of my favorites:
For the paleo newbie: Practical Paleo by Diane Sanfilippo
For the simple chef who is just learning to cook: Well Fed 2 by Melissa Joulwan
For the “New Year, New Me” people: It Starts with Food by Melissa Hartwig
For pressure cooker dishes to make with the Instant Pot: Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans by Michelle Tam
4. Bluetooth Headphones
Ah, yet another item on my list (and I’m hoping I find a pair at the bottom of my stocking!) There’s nothing worse than hitting the gym with wires dangling from your ears besides working out to the songs your gym is playing on the radio, unless of course Janelle is DJ-ing. You can keep it simple with an in-ear pair like these which are on sale or do it big with an on-ear set of Beats complete with color customization to match your favorite running shoes.
5. Minimalist Shoes
At a recent fitness workshop, Janelle kindly offered up the spare pair of minimalist shoes she had in her car to a friend who wanted to workout barefoot. While you could take the no-shoes route, a pair of Vibrams will take you far. You can wear ’em indoors and outdoors, but they’re perfect for kettlebells and calisthenics which are the name of the game here at Primal Fitness Pittsburgh. Any fitness enthusiast would be happy to hop on board, even if they think those funky “toe shoes” look a little weird at first.
6. Kombucha Kit
Before you purchase this kombucha kit, you can personally contact me because I have SO MANY SCOBY’S. I could personally set you up with everything you need to get started. The SCOBY is the “mother,” and it’s all you really need to start brewing your own kombucha. It’s incredibly easy, and you’ll always have something refreshing and healthy to sip on. This fermented tea is packed full of good bacteria for a happy gut. You can flavor it however you’d like – this season’s favorites thus far have been apple-cinnamon and cranberry.
Yet another beloved kitchen tool I don’t know how I lived without – the spiralizer. During the summer months when zucchini is abundant, zoodles are breakfast, lunch, dinner, AND snacks. It’s fun to eat noodles when you don’t eat pasta, so anyone resolving to cut back on the good stuff will appreciate the ease of the transition when they realize they can turn any veggie into spaghetti. Before I bit the bullet, I couldn’t see myself using mine very often – I was very wrong. This thing is handy.
8. The Big Tub of Coconut Oil
As I grew up and my parents still continued to ask me what I’d like for Christmas, my mind wandered off to far and practical places. Lo and behold, the monster of coconut oil – this 54 oz. bucket always gets put on the list because it carries me through until summer if I’m lucky. I like to use lots of different cooking fats from my homemade tallow and lard to olive oil and ghee. Coconut oil comes in handy for cooking, cleaning, hair, and skin. I love to use it as a moisturizer, a makeup remover, and well… I use it for everything. Gift this to someone who appreciates the miracle that is coconut oil.
9. The Buff
I first purchased a Buff headband in the dead of winter while getting ready to hike in Utah. We had woken up to a negative 7 degree day. Let me tell you, this little thing saved my life. I use it daily during the winter, and I would be far less motivated to go outside without it. If you have friends who are outdoor runners, hikers, skiers, or outdoor enthusiasts to any extent, this headband acts as a hat, scarf, and a face cover to ensure warmth all over.
10. Foam Roller
What’s all the fun and games without some recovery action? Whether or not you’re sore, foam rollers can work it out like no other. Give the gift of the DIY massage that the recipient can use whenever he or she pleases. Soreness, be gone!
Hint: If you’re looking to buy me a gift, I was pretty clear about which of these products I don’t already own! Happy shopping and happy holidays to you and yours.
Master your instincts!
Alexandra Barone is a healthy living aficionado residing in Pittsburgh, PA. She writes about all things real food with a focus on paleo. From the kitchen to the gym to roaming the forest, she values a good soundtrack and a color-coordinated outfit.