First Run Back + GIFT GUIDE!!

First run back!

(Headband, coat, pants, shoes, gloves, long sleeve, socks)

It was so cold out that I actually paid attention to covering my ankles for the run.

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Some of us need very puffy/thick gloves in 19-degree weather, and others don’t need gloves at all… JENN?!

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That first run back always feels a little sluggish!  I’m taking four days off this week (traveling), and I’ll do a few easy miles or the bike on the other days, but I’m going to wait a few weeks to do any speed.

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A huge highlight of our weekend was trying Swig’s Frozen Hot Chocolate.  It was too good.

Brookie had indoor soccer, and Skye ran laps while we waited.

And we had to show the kids the lights at the Riverwoods.

The easiest nachos on the planet for dinner.  BBQ sauce, rotisserie chicken, tomatoes, cheese, avocados, red onions, and chips.  We didn’t even get plates out, we just all ate off the pan, ha.

We did a lot of baking to do an early Thanksgiving with family.

A Bountiful Kitchen’s banana cream pie is a MUST for us.


If you need some gifts for runners or ideas to put on your list, I have you covered:

*This is my go-to light when running in the dark.  It clips on magnetically to your clothing, and you get to avoid wearing anything on your head:)

*My favorite sunglasses to run with.

*My training partner, Lauren, got me hooked on this one.  It is the best massager, and you can move it around to any part of your body that needs TLC.  I always use it on my hamstrings, and it feels so good.

*Another Lauren find, but PR Lotion… I used it on my last marathon and loved it.  Either it works, or it is a placebo effect, but I’ll take either;)

*One of my winter running gloves, and they are on sale this year!

*Also, loving these gloves.

*My #1 favorite sports bra… I have it in so many colors.

*I am obsessed with Liquid IV. I use it every single day of my life to help me to stay hydrated and to get in electrolytes. Piña Colada and Strawberry are my favorite flavors, and the code HUNGRYRUNNERGIRL will get you free shipping and 25% off here!

*That recovery routine is so crucial for runners, and CORE POWER (code: 20HRGIRL will get you 20% off) is the easiest and most delicious way to get going on recovery.

*Give them some tools for their mental training!  My favorite running books for this are:  The Champion’s Mind: How Great Athletes Think, Train and ThriveStrongLet Your Mind Run, and How Bad Do You Want ItROAR is also an incredible book to help women understand our bodies as athletes!

*My favorite arm warmers and only $11!

*My absolute favorite running tank and running shorts from Amazon.  I wore this outfit in Boston!

*These are the little bottles I put in my shorts pockets for workouts/races.

*My theragun!  The recovery tool I use by far the most, and it is so easy to travel with too.

*Best hair rubber bands ever.

*I’ve been using these ear warmers non-stop.

*My #1 running socks.

*This hat that also has ear warmers is AMAZING.

*Koala Clip (HRG10 gets you 10% off!)!  The absolute best way to take your phone on the run, and she personalizes them too, if you want.

*If they run with their dog, I love this leash while running with Beretta!

*I will forever love my water bottles—> The StanleyThe Simple Modern Bottle , or Hydro Flask are my favorites.  Oh, and this Tumbler is fantastic too.

*These little massage balls are awesome for your feet.

*The leggings I am obsessed with that are only $26… the colors, the materials, the pockets, and the fit are just awesome.

*The long sleeve $24 top that I love!  It’s awesome, and they have so many colors to choose from too.

*My Hydration Vest is AMAZING, and I used it for all of my trail/ultra training and race.

*The best sandals to wear around the house (they have helped my plantar so much)

*My favorite handheld water bottle to keep your runner hydrated:)

*Andrew bought me this run necklace a few years ago for Christmas!

*My favorite post-run sweatshirt to throw on for errands/stretching.

*My current favorite lululemon items I think everyone could love–> here, here, here, here and here.


And some gift ideas for women:

*Oprah’s list always has amazing items.

*My favorite coat ever in tan or black.

*My favorite face masks!

*Olaplex.  My favorite hair product ever.  My favorite shampoo and conditioner too.  And this Hair scalp massager (so cheap, but it feels amazing)

*I have been wearing my ugg slippers everywhere.

*I am a huge fan of winter boots, and thesethesethese , and these are my favorites.

*The best top coat and fingernail polish would make a great gift.

*This cast iron dutch oven is something I always use.

*Another kitchen need—> We use the air fryer daily.

*I am so in love with this blanket lately.

*The absolute greatest hot chocolate.

*My last 5 Madewell (favorite store for real clothes) purchases are here, here, here, here, and here.

*I love beanies!  These are my favorites–> HERE, HERE, HERE, and HERE!

*The sunglasses I use often and always get a lot of questions about!

*My absolute favorite cookbooks: Two Peas & Their PodCooke Once, Eat All WeekRun Fast. Cook Fast. Eat Slow. and Run Fast. Eat Slow.   Oh, and THIS is the best cookbook holder.

My gift guide for kids will be up tomorrow!

Christmas shopping… have you started?  Are you done?

Did you run this last weekend?

What days off do you have this week if you are working?    

Anything on your Christmas list?

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I made your braided bread recipe for an early Thanksgiving and I was told it was the best bread ever! Thank you for another great recipe! Your toffee apple dip is a staple in my house for the holidays.


This makes me so happy! The braiding just makes it look so fancy too. Off to get stuff for that dip, I forgot about that one. Happy Monday, Kara!


This is a great list. I love all of these items. Thanks for sharing!


You are so welcome! I hope you have a beautiful day, Lynn!


Awesome list!
I’m probably taking a few days off from running, just because I want to really enjoy everyone being home. But I know I’ll be able to sneak a few in.
Those Christmas lights are so pretty.
I haven’t started shopping at all yet. I need to get going, eeekk. I am really trying to find meaningful gifts this year.
Hope your week is starting off great!


I think you guys are going to create so many amazing memories together this week. SO excited for you! I am with you… I really need to get shopping! Thanks Wendy, you too!


Hello! Thanks for all the recommendations!

I actually have an ask of the followers here. Has anyone had this done to treat plantar fasciitis? Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy (ESWT)? Did it work?


I will ask as a blog question in tomorrow’s post… would that help? Have a beautiful day, Caroline!


Wow, that would be amazing. I have been having trouble for around a year, but its not debilitating. I take time off from running but it doesn’t help. Even if I am not running, a day at the zoo will really make it hurt. Its more of time on my feet that sets it off. So the podiatrist recommended this extracorporeal pulse activation EPAT which is a form of ESWT (Extracorporeal Shock Wave Therapy)… So many big words. Supposedly it heals faster and better than a cortizone shot.


Hi Janae! What an awesome list! I tell everyone I can about the koala clip because it’s just the best. Can’t believe the holidays are already almost here! I’m working Monday and Tuesday this week and then vacation!!!
Have a great day!


YAY for a short work week and I’m with you, the holidays came fast this year! I hope you are having a wonderful Monday. Thanks Amy!


This gift guide is helpful, thank you! If Andrew has any mountain bike accessory gift ideas, would love to see those too – I need something for my father that isn’t just the usual new jersey…


YES!! I will ask him and it will probably be in Wednesday or Monday’s post. THANK YOU and I love that your dad is a mountain biker. Have a beautiful day, Liz!


Thank you!! And yes, still riding (better than me!!) in his late 60s!


This is soooo helpful, thank you. I have many things saved in my Amazon cart, and added to my Lulu wish list. 😬

This week I’m just doing some easy runs. Will do a local Turkey Trot with my daughter on Thursday am. Also, I may be surprising my husband with a Peloton for Christmas. He might kill me, haha! Selfishly I’m excited to use it, you seem to love it. But really he needs it bc he’s had a series of really bad leg injuries the last 3 years and can’t run right now. But it’s dark at like 5pm which makes late day biking outside not an option. So this seems like a good option for us for this season!!


A PELOTON! Oh I am so excited about this.. you are both going to love it. You’ll have to let me know what you think! Have the best time at the Turkey Trot and I hope your husband’s injuries stop happening. Have a beautiful day, Beth!


I definitely will let you know. I’m so excited for him to have something here he can get a good workout on!

Happy Thanksgiving Janae. Hope you have a wonderful time with family!!


Hi! Thanks for the gift guide. Is there a neck gaiter you recommend?


HEY! I should have added this to the list. I love Smartwool products and this is one I love! Have a great evening.


Appreciate the quick reply. Have a wonderful thanksgiving!


Hi! Thank you for the guide! Didn’t you post once your favorite safety gear? I’m remembering a taser but can’t find it. I’ve been telling my family now that I want a taser for Christmas ;).


Such a good list, I love it all!

I hope you are all having a wonderful week =)

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