The 22 Best Running Gifts for Men of 2021, According to a Running Coach

Get him something he'll love

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If you’re shopping for a runner, you may be stumped for ideas, especially if he already has an extensive collection of running gear. As a running coach, I’ve researched and used lots of running-related items, so I can help make your holiday gift shopping a little easier. These picks will help make running or recovery more comfortable, providing support and encouragement to help your gift recipient enjoy their runs even more, and improve their performance too. And there's something for every price point, so you'll be sure to find something that works for your budget.

Here are the best running gifts for men on the market.

Our Top Picks
These slides promise to absorb 37 percent more impact than general footwear foam, so he can keep his feet healthy on rest days.
Give him access to thousands of audiobooks and podcasts so he can be more entertained during his workout.
Featuring two pockets and a sweat-resistant exterior, this belt allows him to take his essentials on-the-go.
Quiet and ultra-portable, this percussive device is designed to relieve knots, tension, and cramps that result from running.
An all-in-one smartwatch that tracks his training status and features navigation sensors, heart rate technology, and more.
If he's a fan of nighttime running, he'll appreciate staying safe in this reflective vest, with visibility up to 1,200 feet away.
If vigorous workouts are his speed, Bose's earbuds promise clear, powerful sound and a secure, comfortable fit.
Access important notifications or change the music while keeping warm with TrailHeads' touchscreen-friendly, anti-slip gloves.
A lightweight layering piece that features anti-odor technologies and can be worn for errands or to the gym.
Re-energize on rest days with a foot roller that promises to enhance circulation, soothe sore muscles, and shorten recovery time.

OOFOS OOahh Slide Sandals

OOFOS OOahh Slide Sandals

Runners can slide right into post-run recovery with these durable, comfortable sandals from OOFOS. They conform to the foot, ensuring good arch support and natural motion—all while easing stress on the feet, knees, and lower back.

Audible Membership

Audible

A suspenseful audiobook or intriguing podcast can help runners conquer boredom on the treadmill or long run. Treat him to a one-month, three-month, six-month, or 12-month subscription to Audible so he can get all-you-can-listen access to thousands of audiobooks, podcasts, and originals.

Sport2People Running Pouch Belt

sport2people Running Belt

Whether it's a set of keys, a credit card or a cell phone, there are things you can't leave behind while on a run. This lightweight belt has two flexible compartments for small essentials. It also comes equipped with an adjustable waistband to limit bouncing or movement of the belt.

TheraGun Mini Percussive Therapy Device

Theragun Mini

Thanks to the compact design, the Theragun Mini will provide your runner with portable treatment, no matter where his run takes him. It features three speed settings calibrated to deliver specific therapeutic benefits to the body.

Additionally, the QuietForce Technology ensures he can use the device in indoor or outdoor settings.

Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire Watch

Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire Watch

The Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire is the ultimate smartwatch, giving runners all the tools they need to track and analyze their workouts. It includes full-color Topo U.S. mapping, performance metrics, heart rate technology, built-in activity profiles, and smart notifications to keep runners connected on the go.

Give him a gift that will keep him safe and seen on nighttime jogs. Made of a breathable, lightweight mesh, the Nathan Streak Reflective Vest is visible up to 1,200 feet away with reflective patches on all sides and allows for full range of motion while running.

These wireless earbuds are compatible with just about any device and deliver clear, powerful sound. Designed to stay in place no matter how hard he's running, they’re also sweat and water resistant.

Trailheads Touchscreen Men’s Running Gloves

Trailheads Touchscreen Men’s Running Gloves

These soft, fleecy gloves feature conductive fabric on the thumb and forefingers, so runners can keep their hands toasty when they need to check a text or adjust their playlist. They’ll also love the silicone palm grips and the terry cloth brow wipe on the back of the hand.

Under Armour Men’s Tech ½ Zip Long-Sleeve Shirt

Under Armour Men’s Tech ½ Zip Long-Sleeve Shirt

This half-zip long-sleeve shirt is a versatile piece that can be used as an outer layer for cool runs and a mid-layer during the winter. It’s also sharp-looking enough for casual wear.

FlexFixx Foot Massage Ball Roller Set

FlexFixx Foot Massage Ball Roller Set

This portable set makes it simple for runners to get a good post-run foot massage to help improve circulation, release tension, and reduce inflammation. The smooth lacrosse ball is perfect for rolling out and loosening tight muscles and fascia, while the spiky balls can help stimulate tissues beneath the skin.  

The North Face Gordon Lyons Vest

The North Face Gordon Lyons Vest

Another extremely practical item for winter running, this vest from The North Face keeps your runner's core warm on cold runs and can be zipped up or down to regulate his temperature. With pockets on the side and chest, there’s plenty of room to stash on-the-run essentials.

Tribe Cell Phone Armband

Tribe Cell Phone Armband

It’s easy to see why this comfy and functional armband cell phone carrier is popular among runners. The clear protective screen lets them access their phone on the go while keeping it safe from moisture. It also has a reflective band, port for headphone wires, and comes in several sizes to accommodate large phones.

Physix Gear Sport Compression Socks

Physix Gear Sport Physix Gear Compression Socks

These compression socks from Physix Gear can be worn during or after running to increase circulation, reduce swelling, and speed up recovery. They're moisture wicking and come in several sizes and colors.

Fit Simplify Resistance Bands

fit-simplify-resistance-bands

A little resistance can help runners perform some post-run stretches and exercises to work out a tight calf muscle or build up glute strength. This set of five bands comes in varying resistances, from extra light to extra heavy, and are made from 100% natural latex.

The North Face Bones Recycled Beanie

The North Face Bones Recycled Beanie

A comfy, warm hat is a must-have item for winter running attire. This beanie from The North Face is the ideal weight for keeping your runner's head toasty without overheating it. The fleece lining helps the hat stay in place and keep his ears covered.

Squirrel’s Nut Butter All-Natural Anti-Chafe Salve

Squirrel’s Nut Butter All-Natural Anti-Chafe Salve

This athlete-tested, all natural salve helps runners prevent painful chafing in even the most sensitive areas. It’s also an effective remedy for healing dry, cracked, or irritated skin.

Most running books are either inspirational or practical, but this beautiful coffee table-worthy hardcover manages to achieve both. With descriptions of 50 epic running routes and racecourses around the world, plus suggestions for 150 more, it gives runners a motivational bucket list as well as instructions on how to plan and prepare for their journeys.

Remodeez Activated Charcoal Shoe Deodorizer

Remodeez Activated Charcoal Shoe Deodorizer

Rather than masking bad smells with fragrances, these powerful deodorizers use charcoal to absorb and eliminate odors. They’re designed to easily fit in shoes and keep fighting the stink for up to one year.

Apple Watch Series 6

Apple Watch Series 6

Your favorite runner will undoubtedly be pleased with this Apple Watch, which is an outstanding GPS watch and also has plenty of features to support outdoor running. The watch lets him track stats for all his runs, plus get call notifications and play music to boost his motivation.

Under Armour Men's Raid Gym Shorts

Under Armour Men's Raid 10" Shorts

These Under Armour shorts with a 10-inch inseam are an excellent addition to any man’s running wardrobe. They're made from ultra-soft polyester with a four-way stretch fabric that also features moisture-wicking and odor-fighting technology and UPF 30 sun protection.

Balega Hidden Comfort No-Show Running Socks

Balega Hidden Comfort No Show Running Socks

Runners can never have too many pairs of running socks, and they’ll absolutely appreciate these high-quality Balega socks. Made to keep feet dry and blister-free, they have a high heel tab, extra deep heel pockets, and enhanced Elastane material to keep them from slipping and sliding.

Aftershokz Open Ear Wireless Bone Conduction Headphones

AfterShokz Trekz Titanium

These sweat-resistant bone conduction headphones are ideal for road runners, since the open-ear design allows them to hear what’s going on around them. They also have a six-hour battery life, an easy-to-use pause button, and a durable titanium frame.

Zensah Performance Face Mask

Zensah Performance Face Mask

While your favorite runner may already have some face masks, they may not be ideal for running. Designed with active people in mind, this mask from Zensah is quick drying and extremely comfortable. The double straps keep it in place and wrap around his head and neck, so his ears don’t get sore.

Final Verdict

Depending on his running goals and experience, there are multiple items that could make for a helpful running gift for your runner. However, thanks to the road mapping and health tracking features of the Garmin Fenix 5X Sapphire Watch (view at Amazon), we think it makes for one of the top gifts for anyone wishing to take their running game to the next level.

What to Look for in a Running Gift for Men

Needs

Consider what he needs and uses often when running. Ideas include special gear, a specific type of running shorts or dry-wick shirts, snacks, gadgets, or self-care items—anything that keeps him excited and energized about the sport of running. You might consider looking through your gift recipient's nutrition stash or running apparel for sizing to find what you know he'll use.

Preferences

Runners can get pretty particular about what they prefer—specific brands of shoes, nutrition, clothing, socks. They're likely to be picky about anything running-related. If you're not quite sure what your recipient's tried-and-true favorites are, consider giving a gift certificate to a running store. He can get what he wants, and you don't waste your money on something he won't use.

Cost

The cost of a gift is important for you—not so much the recipient, who in most cases will be grateful for a gift of any size. You can spend no money at all and still give a thoughtful gift (like a print of a finish-line photo or a hand-lettered inspirational quote). Be sure not to break your budget to give a gift.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What do you need to know about gift-giving?

    Follow gift-giving etiquette when deciding what to purchase or make for someone else. Remember these clichés: It's the thought that counts, and better late than never. Gifts are appreciated anytime, and if you give them with love and care, cost isn't important.

    When choosing a gift:

    • Think of what the other person wants, not what you want. Perhaps you love a running book and found it helpful. Now you want to give the book to a friend. But if he doesn't love the sport in the way you do, the book could end up collecting dust. Think of what your gift recipient likes or what he has said he needs first. Then go from there.
    • Don't overspend. Gift giving isn't about showing off your wealth. It's about showing that you care.
    • Be careful not to hurt feelings. Don't buy a gift that implies the recipient needs to lose weight, change their diet, improve their race times, and so on. The gift should make the runner feel cared for, not shamed.
  • How do you choose the right gift for someone?

    To select the appropriate gift, consider the recipient's:

    • Personality traits: Are they introverted? Sporty? Love the outdoors? Find a gift that fits his character.
    • Needs: Has this person ever mentioned something he needs? Or have you seen something he needs? For example, he mentioned his ears get cold when running outside; a warm hat as a gift might be welcomed.
    • Wants: Start paying close attention to what people say. You can pick up on what they like and what they want.
  • How can you personalize your gift?

    You can personalize a gift in many ways. Writing a special note to give with the gift is always a good place to start.

    You might also want to have the gift monogrammed. Have your recipient's name or initials sewn into apparel or engraved on a water bottle or picture frame.

    Gifts that you make yourself are a great opportunity for personalization. For example, you could put together a framed photo collage of your weekend at a race together. Or, purchase a gift related to an inside story or joke between the two of you.

    Give the gift of an experience rather than something tangible. You could make him a fancy breakfast for his birthday with his favorite foods, or get him a gift certificate for a massage that he can use after a marathon.

Why Trust Verywell Fit?

An avid runner and marathon running coach, Christine Luff loves checking out the latest running gear and gadgets to find the perfect gifts for running friends and family members.

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