Gifts for New Runners

Gift Guide 2021 | Fleet Feet

With all of the health benefits from running, more people are starting to run everyday. Besides looking for the best running shoes, there are many other pieces of running gear that can help make the runs more comfortable and fun. Giving a new runner a piece of running gear can help encourage them on their journey.

Whether you’re buying a gift for someone who wants to run their first mile or they’re training for their first 5K, these gifts will help them get there. Here are our top ten gift ideas for beginner runners:

[Updated September 8, 2021. This article is part of our 2021 Gift Guide for Runners. See all the best gifts for runners by price, category and more.Can’t make up your mind? No worries. Check out our gift cards for a gift that keeps on giving.]

Balega Hidden Comfort

One of the best things to get a new runner is a great pair of running socks—most runners will say they can never have too many socks. Our choice for beginners is the Balega Hidden Comfort based on their cushion and comfort. Using a 200 needle count fabric, this cushioned sock delivers ultimate protection and impact resistance.

The strategically placed ventilation panels alongside Balega’s proprietary Drynamix® moisture wicking fibers will keep feet cool and dry throughout the run. Wicking away sweat and moisture is important for new runners to prevent blisters and hot spots.

The seamless, reinforced toe, extra deep heel pocket and heel tab dial in the fit of these socks and make sure that they stay in place. These socks are worth every penny, and can make the difference between a good run and a bad run.

goodr Running Sunglasses

Goodr running sunglasses are only $25, but don’t call them cheap. The affordably priced shades are perfect for new runners, experienced marathoners and everyone in between.

What makes goodr glasses so good is their focus on performance and style. Goodr uses polarized lenses to cut glare and protect your eyes from UV rays, while the lightweight plastic frame hugs your temples for a truly no-bounce ride.

A grippy coating ensures they won’t slip down your face when you’re sweating, and dozens of styles, frame shapes and color combinations work as well on the run as they do at the brewery.

Garmin Forerunner 55

The Forerunner 55 is designed for the runner in everyone. Whether you’re just getting started or are training for a race, the Forerunner 55 offers updated features that help you train smarter, not harder.

Having a GPS watch allows you to track the distance, pace and a variety of other metrics when running. One feature that is particularly helpful to new runners is to be able to program run/walk intervals into the watch, so it will alert you when it’s time to walk or run.

This watch is lightweight and waterproof, so you don’t need to worry about taking it off during that post-run shower. It also has great battery life: up to two weeks in smartwatch mode and up to 20 hours in GPS mode.

In addition to classic fitness tracking features like step count, heart rate tracking and sleep monitoring, the Forerunner 55 also features new running metrics to enhance your race-day prep and daily training.

The Garmin Forerunner 55 is the perfect watch for beginners. To learn more about this watch, check out our Garmin Forerunner 55 review.

Addaday Pro Roller

Racking up miles can start to take a toll on your body, so keep it running smoothly with the Addaday Pro Roller.

Addaday designed the massage stick with five rolling gears that dig deep into muscles. Each gear has a different density to help target different areas; the blue-and-white gears offer the softest feel, while the gray-and-blue gears deliver a medium feel. The small red gear gives you pinpoint control for where you need it, perfect for a tight soleus or Achilles.

Above all else, the Pro Roller is simple. We think that simplicity makes it one of the best massage tools you can find.

With motorcycle-grip handles on each end, the Pro Roller is a smart, low-tech solution to massaging muscles and recovering after a run. It is also portable, so you can take it anywhere.

Mizuno Breath Thermo FZ Jacket

This is the perfect first running jacket for someone new to the sport.

With water and wind resistance and 360-degree visibility, this jacket doesn’t cut any corners and can handle all of the elements. Fully reflective fabric keeps you visible in low-light training conditions while super-durable fabric keeps the elements out.

Designed with Mizuno’s Breath Thermo fabric, advanced technology uses escaping body vapors to generate heat, keeping you warm in even the coldest winter weather. DryLite dual filament yarn adds extra comfort by wicking away moisture to create a dry body microclimate for peak performance.

Full zip construction allows you to further adjust coverage, and zippered hand and chest pockets keep your belongings secure whether you’re working out or out on the town. Perfect for the new runner, this jacket will keep them both safe and warm for those cold runs.

Nathan Speedshot Plus Insulated Flask - 12 oz.

As new runners start to run longer distances, a running water bottle can come in handy so that they stay hydrated on their run. This Nathan Speedshot Plus Insulated water bottle has a double-wall insulated flask that will keep your water cold, without freezing your hands.

Nathan thought of everything a new or experienced runner would need when designing the water bottle. It is ergonomically designed to fit your hand, is lightweight and grip-free. They also made it reflective for added night-time visibility.

The hand strap is adjustable and includes an expandable zippered pocket to hold nutrition, keys and other running essentials.

Flipbelt Zipper

One of the quandaries that new runners face is where to put their stuff when they run. The FlipBelt Zipper is an answer to this, being a great belt to carry your phone, keys, wallet and more while running without it bouncing around.

Simply step into the FlipBelt Zipper like a pair of pants, place it in a comfortable position on your hips, and forget that you're wearing it. Easily slide in your essentials through any of the three access points, secure your keys on the sewn-in clip and place valuables inside the zipper pocket. Once on, the FlipBelt Zipper stays securely in place without bouncing or shifting.

This belt is moisture wicking and quick drying. Not only is it amazing while you are working out, but it can be used for so much more: Slip it on for concerts, sporting events or traveling to keep your valuables close and secure.

Nathan Vibe Reflective Vest

Safety is important for any new runners—they need to be seen by drivers, cyclists and other runners if they are running early in the morning before work or in the evening after the sun has set. The Nathan Vibe Vest does a great job of making sure that runners are seen by providing 360 degrees of reflectivity.

This vest is perfect because it is minimalist, comfortable and easy-to-fit. It is also adjustable so it can fit over a tank top or a heavy coat depending on the conditions. It is perfect for any runner, beginner or experienced.

Mizuno Breath Thermo Knit Glove

Make sure that any new runner is ready to keep running through the winter months with a pair of running gloves.

Mizuno’s Breath Thermo Knit Glove is the perfect lightweight knit glove that will still keep you warm on your coldest runs. Mizuno’s Breath Thermo technology captures escaping body vapors and generates heat for overall increased warmth during activity.

Superfeet Dynamic Run Insoles

Running can be tiring for you feet—especially for new runners. The Superfeet Dynamic Run insole helps make it a little more comfortable.

Superfeet designed the Dynamic Run insole to help your feet move the way they’re made to. Rather than rigid structure that adds shape, Dynamic Run provides lightly structured support and cushioning that flexes naturally with your foot.

The extra bit of cushioning delivers another layer of comfort for new runners, and an energizing heel pad disperses impact and mitigates excess vibration to fight premature fatigue. Whether you’re running for the first time or getting back into it after some time off, the Superfeet Dynamic Run insole is a great starting point.

Fleet Feet Gift Card

Any runner can always use a gift card to Fleet Feet. These can be used both online, or at any of the 180+ Fleet Feet retail locations, where they can experience our Fit Process that utilizes 3D fit id® foot scanning technology to find the perfect shoe for them.

How We Picked the Best Gifts

With more than 45 years of experience, Fleet Feet is the expert in running (and gifting). What makes the perfect gift for a runner comes down to the personal experience, goals, preferences and style of that runner. At Fleet Feet, we have been helping runners pick out the right gear for decades, so we know a thing or two about making picking out the perfect gifts for them.

We use a combination of real-life use, quality of materials, seasonal trends and our own top-seller lists to pick out the best gifts. With all that in mind, we picked gear that lived up to our personal (and professional) expectations. Plus, as people who live and breathe running, we know what we would like to unwrap ourselves.

Standing Behind Our Picks

We picked the best gifts based on what we think will work for the most people in the most situations. If you buy a gift from us and you don’t love the way it looks, fits or performs, bring them back within 60 days for a full refund.

Plus, we offer free shipping on all orders over $99 on, and we’ll match a lower price from a qualifying retailer. That’s our Happy Fit Guarantee.