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Healthy Holidays: Great Fitness Equipment Gift Ideas

As the holiday season gets into full swing, there is a pretty good chance that in the recesses of many brains the nagging (and annoying) voice is already asking, “how am I going to be able to meet my ‘get healthy’ resolution this year?” Some may have gotten in front of it, and requested fitness equipment or gym memberships as gifts already. Others, not so much.

You might not be in a position to gift someone a sweet gym membership, so here are some thoughtful (and interesting) gifts that you can buy for those nearest and dearest to you (and the gym) this holiday.

Big Box

Let’s be honest, some folks just can’t motivate themselves to throw in a workout DVD or rely on body weight exercise to get the job done. A piece of equipment in the home is what they need to commit to a more consistent regimen. So what is it that they can use?

Treadmill

In terms of exercise equipment, the treadmill is the gold standard for exercisers. And according to this Digital Journal article, it doesn’t look like that fact is going to change anytime soon.

So, there will definitely be more than one or two of these on holiday Wish Lists this year. The exercise-scape is littered with countless brands and models, ranging from over $30,000 to those in the low hundreds.

The key is to delve into what fits your budget, your space, and your expectations. Very Well offers a quick overview of what you will need to consider when buying, and a review site like Consumer Report will break down what to look for and why.

Elliptical Trainer

After the treadmill, this is probably the most popular piece of cardio fitness equipment on any fitness facility floor.

However, for many people, space is a big concern when it comes to buying any type of exercise equipment for the home.

Fitrated.com took this under consideration and has compiled a list of Best Compact Ellipticals of 2017. This comes with a look at the pros and cons of compact ellipticals versus the full-size version. For the sake of comparison, ellipticalreview.com has also taken a look at the Best Elliptical Trainers For Small Spaces.

The AMT

Precor Adaptive Motion Trainer AMT 813So what if you want three different pieces of cardio equipment? That’s the question that Precor asked. This industry leader has developed the perfect mix of treadmill, elliptical and stair climber into one exercise machine.

The Precor Adaptive Motion Trainer is a multifaceted piece of cardio equipment that can seamlessly change from one low-impact type of cardio exercise to next simply by changing stride. With the moving handlebars, it offers a full body workout, too.

Peleton Bike

Peleton Bike

Courtesy: Peleton

If you know someone who is serious about their indoor biking and cycling classes, then the Peleton Bike could be your huckleberry gift for them. It is a well-designed and tech-savvy piece of fitness equipment that can stack up against many studio cycling bikes.

It has a pretty small footprint for those concerned with space, and it offers a pretty close to being-there experience for studio cyclists.

The price tag can be a little steep (at $1,995), but there are payment plans available, and a bonus 12-month subscription to the Peleton Content Library—which Peleton describe as a “library of live streaming and on-demand Peloton classes, real-time performance tracking.”

Of course, you could just let someone else do all the heavy lifting (excuse the pun) and look at Fitrated’s Best Home Gym Equipment of 2017.

Accessories

Headphones

These have long been a staple of new and experienced exercisers. From blasting workout music to get fired up for a superset, to drowning out the annoyances around you in your favored fitness facility, they are a great addition to any exerciser’s arsenal.

Technology has come a long way with regards to these little guys. They are now wireless and ergonomic, meaning they won’t get pulled out of your ears by the cord and you won’t look like you’re working a turntable.

If you need a little inspiration (reads: cheat sheet), then check out these best and worst options for the exerciser in need of beats. Cnet is always a reliable source and these are their Best Sports Headphones of 2017. Men’s Health takes a look at the 15 best and worst wireless workout headphones of spring 2017, and last but not least, there is The Best Sports Headphones For Your Run Or Workout from bestproducts.com.

Smart clothing

It is exactly what it sounds like. This type of “wearable” tech made its first steps toward the mainstream in 2015, and it seems like it is gaining traction every year.

With the obsession with data and metrics and instant feedback into performance (as evidenced by the meteoric rise in popularity of wearables like Fitbit), it is little wonder that clothing that tracks all manners of data points is getting more and more play.

Here are a few of the options available, courtesy of wearable.com.

Adjustables

One thing about fitness facilities is that they have the space to accommodate all manners of plates, weights and strength machines. You, on the other hand, might not. Enter adjustable, self-contained weights.

Instead of having a rack of dumbbells with specific weights, there are pairs of dumbbells that can be adjusted to a specific weight without adding or removing plates.

These adjustable dumbbells are not necessarily a new innovation, but with modern technology, adjusting the weight can be performed with a dial or a pin.

Bestproducts.com has drawn up their list of 13 Easily Adjustable Dumbbells For At-home Weightlifting.

There are also adjustable kettlebells (which askmen.com has at No. 1 on their list of Top 10: Home Exercise Products Worth Owning). Here is a video discussing this year’s 9 best adjustable kettlebells

Unusual/Trendy

Sometimes thinking outside of the box is actually better than the big box—especially since big box usually means big tickets and big spaces.

TRX

TRX training workout

Courtesy: TRX twitter

This suspension training system, designed by an ex-Navy SEAL, leverages the user’s own body weight for strength balance and flexibility exercises. It has gained popularity over the last few years, and it now comes in a home version too! TRX home, as the name suggests, allows the user to turn their home into a gym. As it is strap and grip based, it takes up almost no space and can be set up in minutes.

A couple of kettlebells never hurt anybody—said no one. Ever. But these en vogue-again pieces of exercise equipment are handy and can be used in many different types of free-weight still exercises. However, they can be bulky.

Snacks

These can make great stocking stuffers for the exerciser on your holiday list. They are often overlooked, but can be extremely helpful to anyone trying to exercise effectively. Adding carbohydrates and protein, or suppressing cravings, is a good way to prepare for and recover from a workout.

But not all bars are created equal. Check out this best and worst list from eatthis.com.

Clothing

You can’t go wrong with exercise clothing (outside of choosing the wrong size….). Not only is it comfortable, but it can act as an incentive for people to get out and use it for what it was designed.

Known as enclothed cognition, it is believed that exercisers essentially become what they wear, changing both behaviors and actions. You wear yoga pants, you want to do yoga. You buy nice new running shoes, you run.

If you aren’t sure what you should buy, there are a couple of brands that are can’t-misses.

The Huffington Post came up with these 10 brands for men (and as a bonus, here’s Esquire’s guide to looking great in the gym), while fitnessmagazine.com has this Top 10 Workout Clothes Brands to Help You Break a Sweat for women.

Workout DVDs

As holiday and New Year’s resolutions come thick and fast at this time of year, workout videos can be a healthy nudge in the right direction.

Also, for those that don’t have time (or inclination) to join a fitness facility, or load their modest apartment down with bulky exercise equipment, an exercise DVD can be a nice little stocking stuffer.

And if they don’t use them, at least they make nice drink mats for when company comes over.

Here are a couple of lists to take a look through from wiki.ezvid.com, and one from fitnessmagazine.com. These are pretty comprehensive lists ranging from MMA legend Georges St. Pierre and TV fitness guru Jillian Michaels, to yoga for pregnant mothers and quite a lot in between for exercisers of all levels. Some of the DVDs even come with diet plans in addition to exercise plans!

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  1. 9 Things to Think About Before Hitting the Gym in The New Year | enerG Wellness - December 29, 2017

    […] recently talked about gift ideas for those people in your life that are looking to get healthier in the new year (and what better way to do it than through a gifted piece of exercise equipment or […]

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