The Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide for Health & Fitness Enthusiasts
Every year, around the end of November, I publish the Protein Pow Holiday Gift Guide for Health & Fitness enthusiasts. It’s a list compiling some of what I think are the best gifts to give – and particularly to receive! I try to cover all kinds of tastes, budgets, and needs to end with a monster list that hopefully ticks everyone’s boxes.
In in, you will find a list of products with little blurb explaining what each item is and links to places in the UK and US where you can find them. As always, I’ve only added things that I legitimately think would make great presents. If there is anything that you think should be added to the list, please get in touch!
I like to always start my lists by recommending Gavin’s first Zen Pencils book. It is a wonderful gift to give to someone you love! It has sold millions of copies worldwide and is now in the NYT Best Seller list! It’s not surprising though because it’s an incredible book; perfect for anyone who’s into beautiful illustrations, motivational quote-sharing, and just gorgeous books in general. It’s an absolute gem of a book. It’s not about health & fitness directly but indirectly, aren’t all inspirational messages conducive to better adherence to one’s health & fitness goals? You can find it on amazon.com, amazon.co.uk, and the author’s own site (which ships worldwide). You can get posters and canvas prints there too! The book is brilliant. The definition of cool.
If you got someone Gavin’s first book last year – or if you didn’t but want to make their present even MORE powerful, add Gavin’s second book to his first and BOOM! You got yourself a bundle of Zen Pencil glory. Gavin has been touring worldwide with this, his second book (follow him here), getting endless accolades in the process. Again, it’s not surprising because Gavin is an absolute rockstar and the message and illustrations in his books are unmatched. All in all, his books are perfect gift for everyone – from kids to adults! You can find Zen Pencil’s Dream the Impossible Dream on amazon.com, amazon.co.uk, and the author’s own site (which ships worldwide).
From wisdom to warmth. Say hello to the warmest slippers on earth. If you know someone who is constantly complaining of having cold feet (either literally or figuratively, har har), get them a pair of these Sierra Design slippers. They’re unbelievably warm (700-fill powder down!), cozy, and most extremely comfortable. How do I know? Because I own them, hehe. They’re a life saver! Or shall I say foot saver? So cozy. Soooo cozy.
A Protein Pow list could not be a Protein Pow list without mention of our new Pow cooking mixes! You can get them from our website if you’re in the UK, US, Canada or Australia (here), from Gymgrossisten if you’re in Sweden, or physically from any/all NutriCentre stores in the UK (here’s a list of most of them). Why buy them for a loved one? Because they bring amazing foods to life! Seriously the best protein bars you’ve ever tasted – here is one example and here is another. And the pancakes! And the truffles! It’s endless really. They make protein cooking easy, fun, and dare I say delicious!?
Speaking of cooking, this is a MUST-HAVE for pretty much ALL my recipes. You can get it here. It’s really a kitchen essential, especially for making Protein Fluff and all my protein cakes and so on. It’s also fantastic because it’s really easy to store, takes up no room in the kitchen (unlike, say, a standing mixer, which, yes, is amazing, but you need the counter space for it). Handheld blenders (aka immersion blenders) are also GREAT value for money. If you’re in the UK or Europe, go for this one. It’s the one I have and it’s amazing.
The Protein Pow Cookbook! Here’s a list of places where you can get it, all over the world. The book has also been translated to Finnish! So if your family member or friend is from Finland, you can get them a Pow cookbook here.
If your friend, husband, wife, boyfriend, girlfriend, family member, or colleague is into crossfit, powerlifting, or lifting weights, get them some of these natural grips! I originally saw them in the Shark Tank (the US version of the UK and Canadian Dragon’s Den) and they sound AWESOME. Check them out. It’s a great stocking filler. Even if they have some, getting more is always welcome.
Every fitness junkie needs a yoga mat. For yoga, pilates, or just stretching! This year, I urge you to check out my friend Cassey’s couture yoga mats. They are BEAUTIFUL! High quality, and completely unique in design. Check them out here and go grab one for yourself too while you’re at it!
If your loved one is into fashion and beautiful high-quality hand-finished handbags, you MUST check out GymTote bags. They are an absolutely gorgeous, smart, and extremely stylish way to carry your gym kit around – without anyone noticing!
If you have a woman in your life who isn’t too hot on lifting weights – who mostly runs for exercise, thinks weights make women look like Hulk, needs more confidence to enter the weight-floor, doesn’t get why weight lifting is fun or actually beneficial to women – get her this book. I actually fell in love with lifting largely BECAUSE of this book. It’s really basic but really cool! You can get it here in the UK or here if you’re in the US. It’s a fun book, it’s well written, accessible, and represents a good intro to actual lifting for women who need a push (or shove) in that direction (the title is pretty funny too – so good for Christmas Day lols – a la “Reginald! What is this? Haha, ‘Lift Like a Man Look Like a Goddess’? Oh Reginald, youuuuu”).
This is one of the best books you can have in your kitchen and a perfect gift to give to a foodie loved-one, especially if that foodie loved-one is into experimental cooking and getting creative in the kitchen. This book is SERIOUSLY ridiculous. Get it here if you’re in the US and here if you’re in Europe. Your palate will thank you for this one! It’s a fantastic way to pair unusual flavors together.
Here’s an item that I think EVERY household should have: a pullup bar. I use this one which sticks onto a door frame and I really like it. You can get it here if you’re in the US and here if you’re in the UK (but make sure you have a sturdy door frame first!) If you can’t do a single pullup though (because I know a lot of people can’t, especially women), I still suggest you get a bar. Heck, I urge you even more strongly to get one! Read on to the next gift idea to find out why:
This is a really cool stocking filler: a customizable cookie stamp! For you to write whatever you like on your cookies! You can even set it up before you gift it with a private message (like… LOVE or… THANK YOU or… I LOVE YOU!) Check it out here in the UK. And here in the US.
Trigger Point Foam Rollers are a bit more expensive than regular smooth-surface-plain-foam rollers but they’re amazing. You can get one here in the US and here in the UK. Check this out this video if you want to see an example of how foam rollers are used. They’re amazing for releasing tension, ameliorating DOMS, and generally making your body feel at its best.
This is more of a stocking filler but still, a cool thing to give to someone who loves coffee and making their cups of java as pretty as possible: coffee stencils, perfect for those with a barista within. This (US) website has a BUNCH of them but you can find even more by searching ‘Coffee Stencil’ on amazon.com or amazon.co.uk. There are some really cool ones out there.
If someone in your life LOVES hot sauces and claims to be able to eat through any spicy meal without flinching an eye, why not challenge them with this extremely hot spice set? It’s mean to bring even grown men to tears.
I bought a TRX earlier this year and it’s great. I use it at home and take it with me when I travel and know I won’t have access to the gym. Here’s my TRX in the New Mexico mountains a few summers, for example. It’s a more expensive gift but if you’re willing to spend an extra buck – or quid – it makes for a really cool present. I got mine on Amazon, here. And if you want to learn a bit more about how the TRX is used or what suspension training is all about, check out this video.
Get someone a massage voucher. I know it’s not the most original thing in the world but if someone were to ask ME what I’d like for Christmas, I’d probably say a massage voucher. I say that every year (I’m just a sucker for massages, what can I say?) To get someone a voucher, all you have to do is find out what massage businesses are near their house (or accessible by car at least, you wouldn’t want to give someone a gnarly massage voucher for a place that’s thousands of miles away – unless, of course, it was accompanied by a plane ticket, hehehe). Then, just check out a few of them to pick out the best one and boom! Get them a voucher.
I love books so I actually went out and bought Jim Wendler’s 5/3/1 a couple of years ago – I bought the first edition; since then he’s come out with a second edition. I bought it and followed the program for a few months at the gym. I loved it. Now, you don’t NEED to get the book, there are plenty of 5/3/1 templates out there and a ridiculous amount of free information online. But I got the book to go through it, take some notes on it, and to generally have a physical resource to consult and have around the house. I really liked it. The book is very straight-forward and the program is amazing! So if you want to introduce someone to a new lifting program, get them the book.
This thing is called an Egg Skelter. I first saw it a couple of days ago when Pete tweeted me this photo! It certainly makes someone’s eggs – and kitchen – look stylish so I thought to add it to this list. Here’s the US amazon link and here’s the link to get one in the UK. Note: it fits 20 eggs.
A Nespresso! This item has CHANGED MY LIFE and I know it will change yours too, if you love coffee. It’s a bit pricier than most of the things on this list, but it’s 100% worth it. The coffee it makes is just… madness! Get it here if you’re in the UK or here if you’re in the US. Seriously, whoever you give this to as a gift will love you forever (and remember you every day as they drink this smooth, creamy, and superb espresso!)
I’m adding Fat Gripz to this list because a lot of people have been telling me they’ve added it to theirs! Here’s a link to get some ‘gripz’ in the UK and one for the US. Oh and here’s a link to their main site in case you want to learn more about them.
If any of you guys need to get the woman in your life a gift and have no idea what to get them, get them a Lulu gift card. If they’re into fitness and trendy workout gear especially, they’ll love you for it. Lululemon is VERY expensive and their clothes are pretty awesome so they’ll definitely approach your gift with appreciation :-) Here’s a link to get a gift card if you want to go down this route. Note: Feel free to send me one too, hehehe.
One of the best gifts you can give a coffee lover (besides an amazing espresso machine) is a three, six, or twelve month subscription to a REALLY good coffee delivery service. There’s a lot of them out there these days. They’re great. The way they work is this: you set up a subscription for yourself or someone else and, every month, you get a different type of delicious coffee delivered to your door. It’s kind of like an exotic wine delivery service but… for coffee. I’ve used Kopi in the UK before – which is now called Cafe Direct (check out their Gift section here). The Kitch complied a list of other subscription coffee services too if you want to shop around for more! If you’re in the US, check out Boca Java (theirs go from one to twelve months).
Speaking of subscriptions, why not give your loved-one a one-year subscription to a quality fitness magazine? That way they’ll start the new year with great information at their fingertips – motivated to start 2015 not with a whimper but with a BAM! Obviously my Number 1 recommendation would be a subscription for Muscle & Fitness magazine. I write for them every month (click here to see most of the articles I’ve written for them) and I think it’s full of great content (I wrote about that here). There’s a lot of other magazines you can turn to if you’re wanting to gift someone a subscription though, particularly if what you’re looking for is a more specialized sports mag (e.g for someone who’s into running, bodybuilding, triathlons, or simply the sport of eating well!) Amazon (US and UK) offer gift subscriptions but you can obviously also get them from the magazines’ own websites.
A water infuser is perfect for people who struggle to drink enough water in the day by making water taste a bit like juice! There’s a few different models out there but this one is pretty cool. Cassey from Blogilates also sells some beautiful ‘Detox Bottles’ – check them out here!
Speaking of water, a glass water bottle is a great gift for someone whose always going on about plastic. I’ve had one for years! And they’re great because they wash really easily and are fun to carry around. Only downfall is that they’re obviously heavier than plastic but drinking out of glass is great!
This one is for those of you who LOVE chocolate. Or, rather for those who you know love chocolate (unless you’re buying this for yourself indirectly, hehe). It’s a luxury box of dark chocolates from Hotel Chocolat. Ufffffff. If you’re in the US and would like something similar, check out Lindt’s Dark Chocolate assortment set or their gift baskets. Not exactly a health food per se but health is about happiness too! And what’s chocolate if not an giver of joy? Plus, you can always just have one a day and proceed with moderation. Right?? Hehe.
What’s this? It’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup flavored coffee. Perhaps a perfect gift to give someone in your life that loves coffee. And peanut butter cups? I haven’t tried it myself but it sounds intriguing and a friend of mine has been emailing me about it for weeks so I figured to add it to the list. Check it out here – along with a bunch of other crazy coffee flavors (they even have bacon coffee! For the ‘paleos’ in your life? Hehehe.)
A couple of years ago, I hosted a workshop in Nottingham and someone there had made spherified versions of my Protein Pow jelly recipe. Yeah. Spherified. You know, jelly turned into a sphere? It was madness! Here’s evidence; it’s the link pink spheres. You basically bite into the sphere and POW! it bursts in your mouth. You can’t buy any Protein Pow spheres (unfortunately?) but you CAN make them! Using a Spherical Food Converter aka a Spherificator – a machine that turns your food to sphered. It’s a ridiculous item to add to this list but I wanted to shine light on it because can you imagine spherifying ALL your food? Like… oh yeah, here are some spherified oats for breakfast. Please, have some spherified broccoli with a side of spherified chicken. Would you like some spherified cake for dessert?
If you have someone in your life who LOVES smooth, pure, and RICH espresso, you have GOT to get them an aero-press. Seriously. They’re the holy grail of single-cup coffee making. How do they work? By using AIR PRESSURE to push the hot water through your coffee + filter. Here’s a short video showing you how (because it’s one of those things that you have to see). Where to get an aero-press in the UK? You can go with amazon here. Same with the US, check it out.
This is a REALLY cool one. I’ve actually added it to my list for ‘Santa’ myself! It’s a ropeless jump rope. Perfect for jumping rope indoors without taking the ceiling down, hehe. It counts calories, number of jumps, and exercise time too. Pretty sweet, nah???
If you want your loved one/s to be unapologetically powerful in 2016, get them this gift: the gift of ultimate raw strength & fitness! This is Jen Sinkler’s new and extremely amazing powerlifting BIBLE and you can get as a hardcore book and USB with downloadable demo videos. You can get it from here and seriously, what a gift to give to a loved on! I’m nudging my Santa to bruising heights for it this year, hehe.