Our associate editor shares her top shoe, gear, nutrition and racing picks heading into the holiday season.
When there are under-cooked brownies and holiday cookies lying around, it’s hard to resist the temptation — especially after a grueling 10-mile run in sub-par San Diego temps (Yes, we layer up when it dips under 60 degrees). But instead of throwing together a wish list of things that could potentially “transform” the December glutton into the active, I’m-sexy-and-I-know-it, year-round babe, here’s a round-up of things from my closet (er, all over the apartment) that I’m thankful this holiday season…and maybe they sometimes remind me that sugar is not a food group after December.
1. Brooks Adrenaline GTS 14
If I could avoid the excess dirt, I would sleep in them. I turned to the 12s a year ago and haven't looked back—these puppies have allowed me to focus more on form and less on falling victim to my body's imbalances. I love me some support in a shoe, and this trainer definitely stabilizes my stride (and mood).
2. Nike Pro Hyperwarm Hybrid
If there's one thing I love about winter running gear, it's thumbholes. This snug long-sleeve is my favorite thing this month—not only does it keep me toasty during a run when the weather is frightful, but I also wear it pretty much everywhere else. No scarf needed—the (cute) turtleneck design takes care of that. Plus it has thumbholes!
3. I Run This Body Bracelet
I'm a sucker for running-related jewelry, so when Dorothy Beal collaborated with Erica Sara to release this gorgeous gem, I couldn't resist. When I'm not trudging along the trails, I do put on the occasional piece of sparkly bling and act like a lady.
4. Violet Love Headbands
It's true—I spend more on these cute accessories than I do on shampoo. The bands translate perfectly from the road to everyday use when hair just isn't manageable. With a plethora of designs and styles on their website, I'm filled with holiday joy about all the possibilities for my girlfriends.
5. Moving Comfort Compression Short
I've always been skeptical of short compression from a self-conscious standpoint. However, temps allowing, I'm usually rocking the shorties—their flattering cut silence any girlish worries. If you're in the colder-than-San-Diego areas (which is pretty much anywhere outside of Southern California), longer styles are available.
6. Trigger Point GRID Mini
I initially stared at this fun-size accessory and wondered how it would really accomplish anything. But once I zeroed in on some of those stubborn knots, this travel buddy was a savior the morning after a hard race and stiff hotel bed.
7. Women's Running San Diego
Nothing says "new year, new you" like doing a new race in your hometown. Only in it's second year, the San Diego installment of the Women's Running Series looks legit—and fast. I will be at the start line in February, wearing compression and a headband.
8. Timex Ironman Sleek 50-Lap Watch
Ah, a perfect stocking stuffer, and if you're anything like me, the brighter the better. I love this little watch for three reasons: functionality, fashion (my version of it at least) and flash. It's simple to take for a quick run, it's cute to wear around without the bulk of a GPS watch and it comes in nifty colors.
9. Oiselle Rundies
Embrace superstition—I wear the same pair of socks every race. So when Oiselle launched their Rundies with some of my favorite workouts printed on the rear (hello, Fartleks!), I felt it appropriate to wear them around as I prepared for morning speed work. They seem to be working—I clocked my second fastest half-marathon time in 2013.
10. Picky Bars
I pick Picky every day of the week. Their flavors are killer, and their gluten-free bars make my colitis-tummy happy during the jostling movements of running. Creator obsession aside (Lauren's blog is amazing, Jesse's hair is phenomenal and Stephanie is a fellow gluten hater) these bars kick ass. Every runner should munch on them before and after a long one.