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I’m what you would call a “reluctant runner.” Once or twice a year, I’ll sign up for a race. I begrudgingly complete all, well most, of my training runs. I’ll complete said race with varying levels of success and usually, I feel so amazing that I swear up and down that I’m not going to let myself get out of shape again and that I’ll do another race within the next two months.
The next thing I know, it’s been two months since I’ve put on my sneakers and the farthest I can run is to the Starbucks across the street. My friend Nicolle, on the other hand, is a little more dedicated, having completed the Chicago Marathon this year in less time than it takes me to convince myself to go to the gym to spend twenty minutes on the elliptical.
On the day of the big race, a bunch of our friends got together to track her down on the course with fun signs, and of course celebrate her achievement over brunch after the finish.
Another fun way to celebrate a friend or loved one’s big achievement would be to pull together an impressive care package full of goodness. Literally. goodnessknows® Cranberry, Almond, Dark Chocolate snack squares are my new favorite snack for before or after a workout or even to stash in my bag for a long day of business travel. Available in three flavors, they also make the perfect addition to a care package for runners or any celebratory gift set.
My doctor has told me to “do something for your health each day” whether it’s a workout, picking a healthy option when out to dinner or shopping for healthy groceries which of course, include healthy snacks.
goodnessknows® snack squares are proof that doing a little good for yourself can go a long way. Even wholesome snacks should taste great and these do!
How do you make that perfect celebratory gift? It’s pretty simple.
Pick a pretty box. If you want to go the semi-homemade route, my favorite thing to do is find a pretty reclaimed wood box from an antique market or craft fair (here in Chicago my favorite places to stock up are Randolph Street Market and Renegade Craft Fair).
Line said box with tissue paper for decoration or crinkle paper for padding (if your box is bigger than its contents). I like to go with all natural or contrasting colors. For my natural wood box, I used a bone colored crinkle paper, but if you want to do something festive, pick tissue paper in your recipient’s favorite colors.
If you want to be extra festive, grab some ribbon to complete your package — no need to wrap it!
This is the fun part: when you get to hit the stores to go shopping. A few must-haves for me in any fitness gift set are:
goodnessknows® snack squares: Made with real fruit and whole nuts, you can’t go wrong with any of the varieties of these tasty snacks. I prefer them to whole bars because you can pop the individual bites in your mouth when you’re on the go — no need to eat more than you’re craving. The snack squares are available in three delicious flavors; cranberry, almond, dark chocolate; apple, almond & peanut, dark chocolate and peach & cherry, almond, dark chocolate. You can pick some up near the cash register at Walmart Supercenter with this coupon to try for yourself or share with a friend.
Chapstick: Running can easily dehydrate you, so when I do run, it’s never without something to relieve chapped lips. Especially if the big race is in the fall or winter, you’ll likely need to keep something small in your pocket or fuel belt. Skip the fun flavors and colors and pick something simple.
Pain reliever: When I ran my first half marathon I totally experienced a runner’s high…until I woke up the next morning and couldn’t walk down the stairs. Ibuprofen, ibuprofen, ibuprofen.
Hydration belt or arm band: It took me forever to spring for a good hydration belt, after numerous long runs where I was dying for water. It takes awhile to get used to, but running with a belt on will eventually feel normal. I also love having an armband that contains my iPhone so I don’t drop it mid-run which has happened, well, more than once.
Hair ties: Every runner has experienced a hair tie breaking mid-race, when you go to adjust your hat/visor or redo your ponytail. Don’t let this happen to your friends.
Create or print a fun, handmade card or note of encouragement. There are tons of words of encouragement to be found on Pinterest, one of my favorites pictured above. Services like VistaPrint let you print your own cards, which adds a personalized touch to finish off your gift set. My current favorite: “Nothing is impossible. The word itself says I’m possible.”
If you want to get started on your own set, goodnessknows® has a fun sweepstakes going on! Share your goodnessknows® photo or quote for a chance to win a variety of fitness prizes.
What are your favorite gifts or goodies to give someone who needs some encouragement in their fitness goals? Visit online for more ideas and inspiration!