Monday, December 2, 2013

All I Want For Christmas...

"I don't want a lot for Christmas (lie)
There is just one thing I need (or two, or three...or a few more than that...)
I don't care about the presents (ummm, judging from this list, I kinda do)
Underneath the Christmas tree (they probably won't make it under there before I buy them myself)
...
All I want for Christmas is...
yooooou
(to get me these things)"
- Mariah Carey
Sooo, now that I've completed butchered Mariah's lovely song and the whole meaning behind it.  Onwards we go!
CONFESSION: In my defense, I never really said I was really all that humble or minimalistic...
Still have to admit that even if I was humble or minimalistic (though how I'd ever motivate myself to get out and run - what? for the pure satisfaction of it? I don't think so! #letsbehonest) you just can't help seeing things every now and again and thinking, "Oooh, I want that!"  Perhaps it just so happens that I think that quite a bit... #TeamWantALLtheFitnessGear!
In bloggy world, I don't really know how gift guides work and if there are certain rules, so I'm just going to jump in.  Plus, this isn't really a gift guide (in that I am posting it to help you give something to that fitness fanatic close to your heart) but more a compilation of all the things that I've said, "Oooh, I want that!" lately.  So, if you also just happen to say the same thing or DO get an idea on what to give that fitness person in your life, then bonus points for everyone!  
To provide full disclosure, I have recently become a Skora Running affiliate and if you do perchance (how Shakespearan of me!) click on their link and purchase something, as part of their affiliate program, I get points telling Skora how awesome I am AND the people I know (obviously, right!?), as well as a pay-per-sale percentage (10%) that will eventually assist in my obsession in purchasing more shoes from them.  I like to view that as a win-win situation because you'll get awesome shoes to run in (that look NOICE! Yes, say it that way) and I get a little help to #haveALLtheshoes!  If you are already on Team #iheartskora, don't forget to check out their affiliate program or read more about it HERE (click there).  Otherewise, everything else, I just want and there's no reason either way for you to click and purchase using the links I provide as they're just meant to be helpful direction and whatnot.  
If you do end up getting anything on my list (or if you already have it), feel free to comment and let me know so I can stew in my own jealousy totally ask you questions or your opinion, or you know, whatevs.
PicMonkey and I worked very hard on this little collage here since my PhotoShop prowess days are long behind me!
  1. Nike+ FuelBand SE (approx. $169.00 CAD)
    Yes, you are not mistaken in that I already have one of these - but it's not an SE!  And it is most definitely not that awesome rose gold colour!  To be honest, I haven't done a lot of research into what the difference is between my first generation FuelBand (which I have highly enjoyed!) and the SE version.  I know there have been a few upgrades using the online app, but besides that and the available splash of colour, I'm not really sure, but it's not stopping me from wanting it anyway.

    You can get them from the Nike store online, but because I hate buying things online (because I have to wait for shipping - yes, I'm THAT impatient), I ended up getting mine at the local Apple store (or online), which I thought was weird because I never would have put the two together, but meh, go figure.
  2. Lululemon Enlighten and Expand Tote (approx. $68.00 CAD)
    I have a serious penchant for gym bags.  Any kind, I love them all - the more pockets and zippers, the better!  I even like the ones that they give you for free when you sign up to donate at a gym.  I have duffels, backpacks, big ones, slightly small ones, totes, stylish-looking ones, serious sporty looking ones, SRSLY.  Every couple of months when one falls off the shelf of the shoe closet and lands squarely on Bart's head, he suggests I declutter and get rid of some bags and I am all aghast like he suggested I pick a favourite child to keep and let the rest go.  You just don't DO that, man!

    So besides putting up a BUNCH of bags that I like (which has now evolved to include really huge/cute/not really functional diaper bags), I went with the one that I went "Ooooh, I want that!" most recently which is the Enlighten and Expand tote from lululemon.  I heart lululemon bags.  They all seem so cool in that, 'if you have to ask for the price then you can't afford it' kind of way.  It's got a bunch of features, but really, I just thought it looked cute and is large enough to fit all the crap I always feel like I need to bring with me - all in nice little organized compartments!
  3. Garmin ForeRunner 610 with HRM (approx. $369.99 CAD) and Nike+ SportWatch (approx. $169.99 CAD)Aaah, GPS watches!  Where everyone knows the run never happened if you can't back it up with a GPS map or data (no? Just me?)  So if you don't already know, yes, I already have a Nike+ SportWatch and no there hasn't been an upgrade of the SE variety a la FuelBand, but I still can't help wanting another one.  I mean, the whole point of going out for a run is looking like a runner, isn't it? (no? Just me again?) I'd like to have a little bit of variety and the point of the Garmin is also to have a chance to compare.  I like choices and options and I want to know how similar products differ and why some runners would choose one over the other!  Plus, the white SportWatch and the Garmin Forerunner look all kinds of cool!

    I again chose not to purchase my SportWatch online, but if you have the patience, you can go ahead and do so.  I got mine at a local SportChek.  I was trying to find a link for you, but I can't seem to find any online, but I was able to find online links to BestBuy or FutureShop, so there is a bunch of places you can get them and I'm sure for cheaper than what I paid for.  The Garmin, I first saw in an E-Mail blast from the Running Room here in Canada.
  4. Runner's World Magazine Subscription (approx. $15.00 - $30.00 CAD/one year or two)
    I used to wonder how much about running people could write about, let alone carry on a magazine for as long as Runner's World has been able to.  As a non-runner (I feel awkward saying that because it implies that I think of myself as a RUNNER and I'm not sure I qualify for that, either) but I digress. As a non-runner, I used to think, RUNNING: 1. Lift leg 2. Put one foot in front of other foot 3. In a quick step motion.  I mean, what else was there?  But I've found that I periodically like to pick up a couple of magazines not only just to learn new things about running or read about ground-breaking secrets that was going to escalate me to the next level in running, but it was more about renewing my inspiration or getting re-motivated.  You look through a running magazine and you just can't help but feel legit.  Like, yes, I read running magazines because I too am a runner!  It goes over races and techniques and you feel like you could really DO them.  Like you're ONE of these insane people who like to go outside and put one foot in front of the other in quick stepping motions (because usually once you do that often enough, you can sign up for races where they put MEDALS around your neck!)

    I don't yet have a subscription but I've been drawing a complete blank about what to ask from my family secret santa (to help them out, we compile a list of 3 - 5 things that they can pick/mix and match from so they don't have to come up with something all on their own and hope we don't hate it).  Especially now that I'm nearing my due date, I feel like having that monthly delivery of a running magazine would help keep me in the loop a bit and hopefully inspire/motivate me to get my running shoes back on and head out the door with a little munchkin (and a lot of preggo weight gain) in tow!  You can get a subscription online or via mail in card if you pick up a magazine at a local grocery/drug/bookstore.
  5. Skora Phase X (approx. $125.00 USD)
    I have been coveting these FOREVER.  Or since a few months ago when they were released, same diff.  Since I had so much trouble trying to get through Couch to 5K more than three years ago and not once having a run that I enjoyed pain-free (I say pain free because I'm not really sure I've actually had a run I've enjoyed while I was STILL running and not just when it was over LOL) discovering Skora running shoes was kind of like a little miracle on its own.  I recognized that running was hard for me and because I was having such a hard time, I had pretty much resigned myself to the fact that perhaps I wasn't ever going to be a runner.  Then on a whim (because I am very easily enabled), I picked up a pair after my friend Courtney from Treadmill Runway wrote a really good review AND follow-up review about them.  I thought, "Enh, why the hell not? At the very least, they look good if I can't run in them," and picked up a pair.  I put them on and got on the treadmill just to see what they would feel like and from not having run in YEARS, I banged out my first non-stop 3K.  So first, it was a miracle because I was able to go 3K at all after not having run or so long, and second, that I only stopped because I was out of breath/shape and NOT because my shins/calves were on fire.  Not to sound all infomercial-y on you, but I was legit blown away.  And that, as they say, is history. 

    I have been wanting the Phase X (you can see them in action here: http://vimeo.com/76558726) but I don't have any running buddies that I can go with at night so I've never been able to really justify purchasing them, but I just KNOW if I had them, my running totally WOULD escalate into pure AWESOME (that or I'd look pretty damn cool zoom-zooming around at night like the flash!)

    As I mentioned earlier, I have recently joined their affiliate program because I have a borderline unhealthy obsession with owning more pairs of Skora shoes and every little bit helps, so if you were curious about them or were interested in purchasing them, you can have a look-see at them using my affiliate link here or you can use Courtney's or just visit them at Skora Running.
  6. Focus T25 by Shaun T. (approx. $120.00 USD)Ever since finishing Insanity, I've kind of been on the Shaun T. choo-choo train, which I thought was weird at first because I couldn't really stomach him after trying out Hip Hop Abs.  I think it just goes to show the power of an infomercial that I ended up doing the Insanity workout because I totally thought Hip Hop Abs was a complete scam.  Seriously, hip thrusting to get rock hard abs? I wasn't sure how I fell for that *LOL*

    But nevertheless, I got sucked into the Insanity infomercial and it kept saying that it was the HARDEST workout ever put on DVD (at the time) and I was angry enough at the complete lack of health that I was in that I wanted to take on that challenge.  In my head I was thinking, even if I can't do the hardest workout of all time fully, just trying to make it through day in and day out has GOT to make me healthier than I am right now, right?  And then a calendar full of checkmarks later, I was an Insaniac believer, so of COURSE when I saw that T25 was coming out and it only requires 25 minutes of hard effort, I was on-board.  I may have asked for it as a pushing present.

    You can get it through infomercials or online, but for me, because it was just released and still pretty popular, I'm okay to hold off (especially since I feel like once I start back up after the baby, I'll almost be at ground-zero again and would want to start off more gentler, ie. another round of Insanity which is familiar) until it comes out as an "As seen on TV" purchase at Walmart or something.
  7. Lululemon Keep it Up Jacket (approx. $198.00 CAD)
    As much as I have a penchant for gym bags, I've got a LEGIT weakness for running jackets.  I even have the SAME jacket in multiple colours (CONFESSION: that match the colours in my Skora running shoes), as well as running jackets from races that I've signed up for (CONFESSION: the jackets are the REASON I signed up for the races).  As much as I've already mentioned that I don't run at night, I've got reflective jackets, bright coloured jackets, light jackets, heavier, outdoor running jackets, windbreakers and jackets that just look cool and make me look athletic.  So when I came across this one from Lululemon, it was another of those "I WANT!" moments.  Especially because it's different.  I'm a big fan of different in that it's got that angled zipper that zips off more to the size as opposed to just straight up vertical, you can get it in a pattern, although of course I would want it in black first, since I feel like me getting it in white is just asking for a whole lot of dirty trouble (GAH! The more I look at the white one, the more I WANT IT - how is it that I enabled myself?!).  I'm not sure how much I can justify the price besides saying that it's a lululemon, but I never said this want list was realistic.  Just that I wanted it! *LOL*  You can get it online here or at your local lululemon store if they have it in stock.

  8. Fun Knee Socks - compression optional (approx. $5.00 - $80.00 CAD)
    So besides the bright jackets, another "trait" of mine that makes it easy to BE me for Halloween apparently is my love of fun/bright knee socks.  I have a pretty moderate and growing collection and I'm not really entirely sure why besides the fact that it's just fun.  Running for me isn't all that FUN just yet, but going out there in fun socks and hitting the road makes it a little more so.  I find it easier to look forward to a run when I know I have fun socks that I can wear.  At first I started wearing the knee socks during Ultimate Frisbee (my other LOOOOVE!) and those were kind of for an actual need - as in I tended to dive and slide around and turf burn is NOT fun.  Bright, funny socks that protect my legs from turf burn are.  Since then, the knee socks have also spilled into my running and the bonus part is that you can get bright, fun compression ones that also provide actual benefits in terms of circulation and recovery.  For the most part, I run in generic pairs that I pick up from accessories stores (ie. Ardene's) that are 3 for $10, but I've been slooowly (due to cost) picking up some fun compression ones that I've seen around.  Among them are fun patterned ones from BondiBands as well as ProCompression.  If you find compression ones similar to the styles I like to wear at (way) less a cost, TELL ME.  I'd be all in.
  9. Compression Sleeves (approx. I have no idea)
    Since I'm now jumping onto the compression band wagon, I totally want some compression sleeves.  I have no idea what kind of benefits they offer besides the fact that they might keep you warm while wearing short-sleeves to a race (why you wouldn't just wear long-sleeves, the running n00b in me hasn't figured it out yet), but there's no denying that people who wear them in races look BADASS in them!  It's like you really know what you're doing and going out with all the proper gear and looking good is kind of half the battle isn't it?  I could walk out with all my awesome running gear and then get sweaty and then be like, "WOW!  That was an amaaazing 13.1 miles I just put in," in front of someone I walk by and they won't know the diff. (CONFESSION: Ummm...I don't do that... *shifty eyes*)
Sooo, holy cheese on a cracker that's a kind of long list...

CONFESSION: That's only SOME of the things that I've got saved up.  Part II will have to come at another time!  

Hopefully, you've been able to pick up some ideas of things if you're trying to put together a wish-list for someone to help them out or if you have someone on your list that you know is a fitness enthusiast but can't figure out what to get for them.  If they're anything like me, they may appreciate one (or more) things from this list.  If they like running for the pure joy and feeling of running and all they think they really need is two feet and a heartbeat, chances are any of these cool things will be wasted on them and you might as well give them to me.  They're one of those weirdos who like running for like...running.

Q: Was there anything that made you go, "Ooooh, I WANT THAT!"?
Q: Anything on this list that you have that you're not really all that crazy about? Why?!

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