Get gift ideas for your favorite running buddies without breaking the bank. These work great as a stocking stuffer for your running-obsessed loved ones as well or as birthday gifts year-round.
Considering I spend a lot of time running with the same people each year — literally hundreds of hours logging hundreds, sometimes thousands, of miles — I like to show my appreciation during the holiday season for my running friends. We all know running buddies also act as therapists and they deserve a little love and gratitude!
While I shared my gift guide for runners who have everything a few days ago, it’s nice to have a few lower price options so I put together a guide for all of the best little gifts under $20 for your favorite runner! As a long-time runner (I’ve been running for over 20 years!), I always have an ongoing wishlist of things I’d love to have or need to replace, whether it be running socks, race snacks, new hairbands, or running books. And I bet nearly every runner has the same things on their list so you can’t go wrong with these.
Gift Guide For Runners Under $20
While a real-life personal trainer or running coach is definitely not under $20, workout apps are! I love the Aaptiv app and the Peleton app. Both are subscription-based apps with hundreds of workouts. They’re affordable, fun and very well done. Aaptiv has a bit more variety than Peloton (like elliptical workouts) but I love the option to join live classes with Peloton. Both offer cycling, running, strength training, yoga and meditation classes.
You can choose a variety of coaches and music types to find those you like best, and then you just listen to and/or watch the app as you workout. The coaches on both apps are all fantastic and I like being able to choose my specific taste in music (vs. never knowing what I’ll get if you show up to a class at the gym!). It’s such a great gift because it gives your favorite runner access to lots of workouts (and we all know cross-training is hugely important!!) and on their schedule.
If you aren’t a runner yourself then this might come as a surprise, but good running socks are HUGELY important and they’re also pretty pricey! Usually one pair costs about $12-$20, which is why they make such a great gift! We runners hate spending money on them, but we always need them! My favorites are these Plantar Fasciitis No Show Socks (thin, more minimal) and these Bombas socks (more cushiony). Distance runners can NEVER have enough running socks so you can’t go wrong with this gift. (We may all own too many pairs of running shoes, but never too many socks!)
This foam roller is one of the best things to have on hand right after a race or long run. You can get them In lots of sizes and varying firmness levels, but this is a great all-around option.
This running pouch belt holds EVERYTHING. The pockets on it are expandable so it can hold a phone, too. If you run outside and need to take things with you (i.e. keys, gels, phone, earphones, etc.) this will save you! I’ve had a SpiBelt for over 8 years and it’s still going strong. I’ve done 20 mile runs with it and it didn’t annoy me, so you know it’s a winner.
LED Safety Lights
If your runner likes to start early in the morning or at dusk after work, these LED lights are essential. They come with straps so you can wear them around your ankles, arms, waist, or wherever feels comfortable when you’re running. I used to even put one on my dog’s collar during walks. 🙂
Maybe not the cutest gift, but SO essential for runners. I always keep a container of Body Glide In my gym bag and in my running drawer. The worst thing is showing up for a long run or race and not having some glide around. (And it’s not exactly fun to ask another runner borrow theirs since runners use them on all sorts of places.)
Hand-held water bottle
I LOVE my Nathan bottle. It has a hand strap that’s makes it easy to carry while running. This bottle holds 10oz which is small, but perfect for shorter runs without needing to carry something too large and bulky.
Runner’s World Magazine Subscription
This magazine subscription makes a perfect gift because your runner will get an issue every month or so, making it a gift that keeps on giving. It’s hard to justify buying a magazine for yourself, but everyone loves to flip through them!! (Side note: they got a new editor in chief recently and I really like the new direction the magazine is taking. The articles feel more in-depth and overall it feels more valuable than it has in recent years.)
Runners spend a lot of time outside and that can dry out lips, especially in the winter. These Primally Pure lip balms are far and away my favorite (my husband loves them too!) and they’re only $4. You can also buy a set of 5 for $18. (Use promo code TERI for 10% off your entire purchase! I love their deodorant, body butter, dry shampoo and face rollers too.)
Run Fast, Cook Fast, Eat Slow Cookbook
I love this cookbook!! It’s full of tons of recipes that are super easy, healthy, and catered to runners. Fueling your body appropriately is SO important (I named this blog A Foodie Stays Fit for a reason! 😉 ) and this cookbook not only has great, easy recipes, but it’s super educational on the nutritional aspect of running as well.
Stocking Stuffer Ideas For Runners Under $20
- Glow Hair Ties – These are great for a little reflective light when running at dark! Guys could also wear them around their wrist.
- Colorful Headbands – Also a cute necessity for holding that hair back!
- Energy Gels – If your runner trains for half or full marathons, a variety of gels is always nice to have!
- Training Journal – I have this and love it.
If you’re a runner, what is your top gift idea under $20?
Shop the post