Running in Anchorage

Holiday Wish List for Runners – Alaska Edition!

Hi everyone!  It’s December, and you know what that means?  Time to make those holiday wish lists!  Last year I made a long list of all the running things my heart desired, but this year I’m narrowing it down to 5 things that all of you should have on your wish list that I’m in love with, and the 5 running things on my wish list now that I live in Alaska!

holiday wish list

5 things that all runners should wish for:

1.  BAMR Bands – these are my favorite running headbands!  They don’t slip, come in tons of cute patterns, and are cheaper than big brands out there.  Check out my review of them here.  Unfortunately you won’t see them on any of my outdoor runs until the temps are in the 40s again.  But they’re great for the gym!

20140731-203657.jpgMy fav yellow chevron BAMR Band back in the summer

2.  A foam roller – this chunk of foam has made a huge difference in my ability to recover from long runs.  It really hurts so good and totally takes away any pain I have.  I even used it the other day after spending all day in my Sorel boots and I felt great afterwards!

20131204-085841.jpgI found mine at TJ Maxx a year ago for less than $20!

3.  YakTrax Run – if you’re not able to stud your shoes, get a pair of YakTrax Run shoe covers!  They fit snugly over your running shoes so that you can transform into an amazing winter running machine!  They work really well on packed snow and ice.  If you’re trying to get into outdoor winter running, this will make you so much more comfortable on your runs!  Believe me, you won’t fall!

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4.  A Road ID – I just got mine in the mail and haven’t tried it out yet (look for a review soon!) but I love that it’s literally a life saver.  Mine includes important information about my family heart disease as well as emergency contact numbers so that if anything happens (like a moose attack) the first responders will know who to call.

5.  Pro Compression Marathon socks – I got a pair of pink ones last winter and fell in love with these socks!  When I was a new runner, compression socks intimidated me for some reason – are they too tight?  Do I need them?  Are they hard to get on and off?  But after wearing them after a tough run I was hooked!  They go on pretty easily and have a nice squeeze feeling that really helps make your legs feel better (hey, just like my foam roller but with less work!).  I started wearing them after every long run for a few hours.  As I began running my long training runs on my treadmill for the Disney Princess Half, I wondered if my Pro Compression socks could help make my legs feel better during the run too.  And after wearing them once during a long run I never went without them again!  They helped prevent any muscle pain in my lower legs which is great on a 2 hour run.  I highly recommend them if you run because not only are they comfortable, they’re cute too!  Pro Compression has a ton of colors and fun prints available on their website, and they’re always running great deals to help you save money.  Right now, you can get 40% off your order if you use the code PINK2 by December 15th.  The snowflake socks are on my wish list right now – they would be perfect for a snowy run!  Pro Compression sent me an awesome pair of black marathon socks recently* and I love that even though they’re not a super bright color, they will go with all of my running outfits.

IMG_3524Resting my legs in my Pro Compression socks after my Turkey Trot last week!

5 things that I’m wishing for up here in Alaska:

1.  The Brooks Infiniti Headband – yes, this was on my wish list last year.  And I even gave one away to a lucky reader.  But honestly, it is so warm and comfy that I want more!  I found it with a “run happy” print on it, and although Brooks sold out they’re luckily sold in other running stores online!  I love how it perfectly covers my ears without taking over most of my face.

IMG_3455My current polka dot Infiniti headband!

2.  A Polar Fleece Buff – I love my original Buff and my trail scarf from Run Pretty Far, but now that I’m in Alaska I need to step it up a notch.  The original version is super thin, and while it helps keep my neck warm during runs I’d like something a bit heavier when it starts getting super cold.  I’ll also be able to wear it while skiing and snowshoeing so it’s definitely at the top of my list.

3.  Really good running mittens – After reading an article on the best running gloves on Be Well Philly, I discovered these 3-in-1 mittens from Eastern Mountain Sports.  They come with touchscreen gloves as well as a waterproof outer mitten to keep your hands warm (with a nose wiping area too!).  I love that they’re convertible for varying weather situations.

4.  A headlamp – I have resisted so far, but I am now becoming one of those runners who owns a headlamp.  It’s just so dark here all the time!  After doing some research, I learned that the Black Diamond Spot headlamp was named the “best headlamp” for all-around use at a lower price point.  Although I won’t have any use for a headlamp during the summer due to our awesome midnight sun situation, I do need it now while we have 5 hours of sunlight a day and there are moose lurking in the woods where I run.

5.  A tablet – I am signing up for the gym any day now (no, really) and once I shell out that incredible amount of money to join I’m going to actually need to go running there.  And since treadmill running is kind of rough without trashy reality TV to get me through it, I want a tablet so that I can watch whatever I want while I’m running!  I’ll be half marathon training through the winter and I need all the help I can get in order to get through my 2.5 hour runs.  And that’s a lot of Teen Mom right there.

So there it is!  My 2014 Holiday Wish List.  I hope you found some great new products and have some new ideas for your lists to Santa!  As for me, my tree is all decorated now and I’m excited to see what shows up underneath it in a few weeks!

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What’s on your wish list this year?  Does your list have anything in common with mine?

*Disclaimer:  I was given a pair of Pro Compression socks free in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are my own, especially about the cuteness of the snow socks.  Which I still want for Christmas FYI  🙂

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26 thoughts on “Holiday Wish List for Runners – Alaska Edition!

    1. I’m so happy to finally have one! Especially since I never know what’s going to happen out there and I run while my husband is still at work! Hopefully I’ll never need to use it though!

  1. I’ll have to check out those gloves. And I’m almost ready to take the headlamp plunge too. I got a KindleFire last year and mostly use it for watching shows or movies on the treadmill!

  2. I love the BAMR band I won in your giveaway. I wouldn’t mind a new headband – looking for one that looks knitted but performance based. I know UA had them last year, and regret not buying one.

    1. I have a headband/ear warmer obsession. I buy them all! I have so many that don’t work, so if one fits I have to have it. Hopefully you can find one of last year’s headbands online!

  3. I’ve always wanted to try compression socks. I hate to shell out that kind of money for one pair of socks, though! I’m also intrigued about the gloves. My hands are always the first thing to get cold. Great post!

    1. I know! It’s definitely expensive, but I have to remind myself that they really do work differently than regular socks and that helps. And my hands are always freezing too, which is why I’m excited about the mittens!

    1. I really want to try The Stick – have you tried that yet? I’ll be flying to my next half marathon and won’t be able to bring my full size foam roller, so I need something that can fit inside a suitcase!

  4. That’s a great list! I have or want almost everything on it. I still haven’t been able to figure compression socks out though. Are you supposed to wear them while you run or afterwards? Or am I overthinking it.. which is super possible.

  5. Love the list! Those YakTrax Run shoe covers look unreal. Would love to try them out! This has definitely got me thinking about what to put on my Christmas wish list. Thanks for the ideas 🙂

    1. Haha apparently it’s not super common…I just see them all the time lurking close to the trail and I’m super paranoid it will happen to me. They do charge people if you get too close to them or their babies! It happened to a few people I know so I’m not taking any chances!

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