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Holiday Gift Guide: 15 Gifts for the Fitness Lover

By Kellee Bryan
The holiday season is upon us, which means we're all on the hunt for that elusive perfect gift for our friends and loved ones. And while all those day-long treks around the mall can add up to some serious EveryMove points, sometimes it's nice to not shop 'til you drop. Let us help you take some of the guesswork out of shopping for the health and fitness enthusiast on your list.

I asked the EveryMove team what goodies appear on their own wish lists, and their suggestions became our 2012 holiday gift guide for the fitness lover. Happy shopping!

Fitbit One ($99.95)
Give the gift of fitness tracking! The One is Fitbit's latest Bluetooth-enabled activity tracker, which counts steps, calories burned, distance covered, and flights of stairs climbed. It also tracks sleep, and includes a silent vibrating alarm to gently rouse wearers from their slumber. Data from One is converted into charts and graphs for easy visualization of activity patters. And Fitbit's accompanying web portal allows users to manually enter food, weight, and additional exercise for a more complete picture of health.

Withings WiFi Body Scale ($159)
The Withings "smart scale" is a WiFi enabled scale that measures body weight, muscle mass, fat mass, and BMI. It connects wirelessly to the Internet to deliver the results of each weigh-in to users' personal account – where they can also set goals and view easy-to-read graphics documenting progress. The scale can recognize up to eight different users, so the whole family can enjoy this gift!

Garmin GPS-enabled Sports Watch (from $129)
Garmin is a go-to brand for sports watches, and for good reason. They're built to last, and they offer a variety of models to ensure that you can find precisely what you're looking for a in a sports watch. For the triathlete, try the Forerunner 910XT ($450), which tracks time, distance, pace, speed, elevation, strokes while swimming, and heart rate (with the right accessories). For a more budget-friendly option, try the Forerunner 10 ($129) – it has fewer features, but still tracks distance, speed, pace, and calories.

Wahoo Blue HR Heart Rate Strap (from $80)
Turn your loved one's iPhone into a an all-in-one training device with the Wahoo Blue HR heart rate strap. Worn around the chest, the monitor collects heart rate data, then connects wirelessly to an iPhone (or iPad) to deliver realtime data through the accompanying app. It also integrates with other popular apps – like Strava, RunKeeper, MapMyRide, and more – to provide heart rate data, playlists, GPS maps (and more) in one device. Works with iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, 7th generation iPod Nano, 3rd and 4th generation iPads, and iPad Mini.

Minimalist running shoes (prices vary)
Minimalist (or "barefoot") running has exploded in the last few years. While a few dedicated runners prefer their feet to be truly bare, most opt for minimalist shoes. Styles and prices of the shoes vary widely. If you're unsure what type to get for the barefooter in your life, start with a cross-training model, which will be suitable for a number of activities like light running, Crossfit, or gym workouts. Born to Run has a nice selection of minimalist shoes to choose from.

Headlamp for night runners (prices vary)
'Tis the season for running – and tripping – in the dark. Help keep your favorite runner on his or her feet with a headlamp to light the way. Try the Black Diamond Sprinter Headlamp ($69.95 at REI), designed specifically for running. The Sprinter's DoublePower LED has a maximum output of 75 lumens, which can be dimmed to the runner's liking or set to strobe – and a rear red safety strobe keeps the runner visible to cars. It was designed to minimize bounce as you run, and comes with a removable top strap for increased stabilization. The Sprinter is powered by a lithium polymer rechargeable battery and comes with a USB charger.

Kryptonite KryptoLok Integrated Chain Lock ($57)
For the cyclist, try this compact bike lock from Kryponite. Rated a 6 on Kryptonite's 10 point scale (10 being extreme security), it's a solid lock at a mid-range price. The 9mm manganese steel chain links are covered in a weather-resistant nylon sheath to foil thieves without foiling your paint job.

FreeWheelin Audio System for Helmets ($150)
For safety's sake, it's not a good idea to cycle listening to tunes through headphones (which cover the ear and drown out traffic). So what's a music loving bike enthusiast to do? The FreeWheelin Audio System is a pair of speakers and a mini amp that attach to any helmet (bicycle or otherwise). It uses bluetooth to access music on your iPhone (or to access your phone on your iPhone, serving as a hands-free speakerphone.) The speakers mount near ears but not over them, so riders can stay aware of their surroundings. And the system is water resistant. Skaters, snowboarders, construction workers, and other helmet-wearers can use the system too!

Khataland YoFoMat PRO (from $40)
For the yogi on the go, this fold-up yoga mat is genius. The standard roll-up mat can get a little unwieldy to carry while running post-ohm errands. And the trek home on a crowded bus? Much better to be able to fold up that bad boy and stick it in a handy tote.

Snowshoes (prices vary)
Snowshoeing is a great winter sport for just about anyone, because the only physical skill you need is walking! Snowshoe models are available at many price points and with a variety of features. Try the snowshoe finder from Tubbs Snowshoes to help determine the right model for your purchase.

Lucky Bums Inflatable Sled ($24.99)
Last time I checked, everyone in the world likes sledding. Need I say more?

Spotify Premium subscription ($9.99)
A premium Spotify subscription gives subscribers access to unlimited music – without advertising – to their computers and mobile phones. Premium also comes with Offline mode, which keeps subscribers' favorite playlists available regardless of whether or not there's access to the Internet. Check out Runner's Worlds playlists for some great run mixes.

The First 20 Minutes: Surprising Science Reveals How We Can Exercise Better, Train Smarter, Live Longer ($15 on Amazon.com)
Author Gretchen Reynolds is probably best known for her popular "Phys Ed" column in The New York Times. In The First 20 Minutes, Reynolds explains (in layman's terms) how exercise affects the body and how much is needed to stay healthy. It's a must read for the fitness bookworm.

Raffle tickets for the Bud Light skis we didn't win (wah!)

Pay Their Way (prices vary)
Help that special someone commit to physical activity by giving a season ski pass, a punch card to a favorite yoga studio, or registering him or her for a 10K, half-marathon, or marathon (depending on current skill level and time to train, of course). What an excellent motivator to get moving!

Traveling Fitness Spa (from $3500)
I just moved into platinum gift territory here, but a girl can dream, right? Escape to Share provides luxury package vacations combining culture and fitness in unique locations around the world. Depending on the destination, you may be treated to yoga, pilates, circuit training, hiking, kayaking, and/or biking – not to mention good food, relaxation, and spa treatments. Locations offered in 2013 are New York, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Colombia, Morocco, and Turkey.

Check out our Health and Fitness Holiday Gift Guide board on Pinterest for more suggestions. What's on your fitness wish list this year?

Posted on December 5, 2012 05:00 PM