The 40 Best Gifts for Gym Lovers and Health Nuts from Nobull, NordicTrack, and More
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As the holiday season quickly approaches, people are once again trying to find 2023’s best gifts for gym lovers to give to the man in their lives. It can be difficult to find something he doesn’t already have that he’ll be psyched to unwrap and start using right away, especially if he’s the type of guy who buys himself gifts on Amazon throughout the week.
Thankfully, Men’s Journal has put together a complete list of the very best gym gifts for men who love personal fitness and being active. We’ve considered all things fitness-related here: workout equipment, apparel, high-end water bottles, recovery tools, and so much more that make excellent gifts or stocking stuffers for guys who run to gym rats.
Most importantly, we considered the heavy price tag that can sometimes come with buying fitness gear and made sure to recommend a variety of products that are reasonably priced, many being gifts under $50, so that your holiday shopping doesn’t break the bank this year. However, we doubt anybody would hate to receive a luxury multi-person sauna or a complete home gym as a gift.
Even after the holidays are over, keep this list handy. Not only is it full of great Christmas gifts for fitness lovers, but these are also perfect Father’s Day or birthday gift ideas for gym guys.
The Best Fitness Gifts for Men of 2023
It’s tough to get a good chest workout without a reliable weight bench, and this adjustable one by Flybird goes from 90 degrees down to -30 with an easy-click system to allow for flat, incline, decline, and shoulder presses. You can also use it for countless other exercises like one-arm rows for the back and seated dumbbell curls. It’s the perfect gift for gym lovers who aren’t always able to get to the gym. We like this particular bench because it’s more affordable than most of its competitors, has an 880-pound load capacity, and is easy to fold up and store at home when not in use.
[$170 (was $200); amazon.com]
Nike makes workout shoes for every kind of athlete—including serious lifters. The brand’s Metcon line is marketed to CrossFitters, but it will work wonderfully for anyone who does big lifts like squats and deadlifts or dynamic exercises like box jumps and agility drills. The Metcon 9 sports a Hyperlift plate for a solid heel to push off when squatting and a rubber wrap around the mid-foot for durability and lateral support. Of all the gifts for gym bros, this is one they’ll love.
Cold tubs are all the rage these days among fitness diehards and runners for their recovery and sleep-enhancing benefits. This best-selling cold plunge tub on Amazon is compact (34-by-30 inches), with a 320-liter capacity and a six-layer insulation system to strike the ideal temperature for maximum cryotherapy effects. It assembles quickly and has a convenient drainage system for emptying. It’s also portable—fold it up and take it anywhere you want.
[$130 (was $190); amazon.com]
The best fitness gifts for men are those that the recipient will be stoked about the first time he opens it up and will use it over and over for many years. Exhibit A: The kettlebell. Anyone who loves training but gets bored of standard dumbbells and barbells will love one (or two, or a set of five). This cast iron bell from Amazon is your standard fare, and that’s the whole point. This should be your gift of choice for something that looks badass and manly in a home gym, is cost-effective, and will last an actual lifetime. Sure, you could get a kettlebell that’s colorful and rubber-coated, but cast iron looks so much cooler. We recommend the 35-pound bell for most guys.
[From $19 on Amazon; amazon.com]
The best t-shirts for the gym these days are being made by Nobull, a fitness brand that currently has partnerships with the CrossFit Games and the NFL. Guys who work out are picky about their t-shirts—more want one that’s great to train in and highlights the hard-earned muscle in the arms and shoulders. The Nobull Tee delivers a flattering cut, a lightweight performance material, and flatlock seams to minimize chafing during workouts.
It’s an accepted fact that having your favorite music blaring in your ears makes for better workouts and running sessions. These Skullcandy noise-canceling headphones are wireless, comfortable, and perfect to wear while exercising. The 22-hour battery life can get you through weeks of grueling cardio workouts on a single charge, and you can hook it up to an iPhone or Android device to access your gym playlist.
[$100 (was $135); amazon.com]
A blender is a no-brainer gift for health nuts who love their smoothies or protein shakes for breakfast, after workouts, or whenever. Full-size blenders can be a pain for daily use since they require cleaning both the blending container and the cup you pour it into. However, with a personal blender, the container is the cup, which means minimal clean-up. This Ninja blender offers great bang for the buck with a robust 1,100-peak-watt motor that rivals many higher-priced, full-size blenders. Use the Auto-iQ programming feature to take the guesswork out of blending time, then remove the cup, attach the spout lid, and take your shake anywhere you want.
[$80 (was $100); amazon.com]
Feet that are screaming after a long day of working out, running, or both need a pair of recovery sandals. Oofos is a leading brand in this new category, and their slides feature a patented footbed with arch support that reduces exertion to give your dogs a break and help your lower body recover faster. They come in a ton of colors and sizes and feel amazing on the feet. Run-of-the-mill slides by big box brands aren’t backed by podiatric science—these are.
This Gatorade water bottle is the perfect fitness gift for any gym bro, runner, hiker, or recreational athlete on your list. It’s got double-wall vacuum insulation, a non-slip Gator-Skin grip that feels great in hand, an easy-open and close drink-thru cap, and a carrying loop you can clip to your bag. It’s available in four colors (black, green, red, and white) and features the iconic Gatorade Thunderbolt logo.
A great gift for guys who work out, the Oakley Corridor tops our list of the best sunglasses for fitness in terms of both performance and value. The Corridor was engineered for runners but is also well-suited for intense outdoor fitness routines. Its semi-rimless design is so light you hardly notice you’re wearing glasses, and the sport nose pad and ear socks minimize bobbing and slippage.
An old-school medicine ball is the perfect piece of equipment for the guy who likes to do whole-body, functional exercises and has some room at home or outside to do explosive moves like wall ball squats and rotational throws. TRX puts a new-school twist on the med ball with premium moisture- and scuff-resistance textile material and a grip-enhancing “hex node” pattern that will hold up after years of serious use. Choose from five different sizes—8 to 20 pounds.
[From $100; trxtraining.com]
A pull-up bar is one of the best gifts for fitness lovers, especially those who want to add muscle and strength to the upper back and biceps without having to drive to the gym to do it. This wall-mounted option beats other at-home pull-up bars because it doesn’t attach to a door frame, which can cause damage and end up being too short for taller guys. It also doesn’t take up any floor space like standing pull-up stations while offering more gripping options—wide, narrow, and neutral—than most other wall-mounted pieces. It’s also very strong, with a solid 6-hole mount design on a triangular base plate that can handle over 400 pounds with no wobble.
[$55 (was $60); amazon.com]
If you’re looking for the perfect gift for a runner or cyclist (or any other endurance athlete, for that matter) you can’t go wrong with a heart rate monitor—the classic training tool for tracking intensity. This model by longtime category leader Polar works for virtually all sports and cardio activities, including swimming because it’s fully waterproof. Aside from being super-accurate, the H10 is also comfortable, thanks to a buckle system in the back that minimizes irritation along with silicone dots that keep the strap from slipping during workouts.
[From $80 (was $90); amazon.com]
Any gym rat or runner who gets sore, fatigued, or achy muscles should have a massage device handy at all times. The Power Plate Mini+ is one of the best post-workout gifts because it offers comparable recovery-boosting stimulation to soft tissue as larger, more expensive models. The Mini+ has four intensity settings, two different massage attachments to relieve muscle tension in all areas, and is quiet enough to let you multitask with TV and self-care. Its small size makes it perfect for traveling, even if you forget the charger—the battery life is an impressive five hours.
The tried and true Casio G-Shock isn’t just a great gift for watch nerds—it can also be one of the best gifts for people who work out. The G-Shock “Move” series caters specifically to those who exercise, with running features like an accelerometer and distance measurement as well as a step counter to track your daily activity level. The GBD-200 model is more affordable than other Move versions, yet it delivers the same impact protection that defines the brand. For a running watch you can knock around in the gym or on the trail, a G-Shock can’t be beaten.
[$115 (was $150); amazon.com]
Any guy who works out will want a comfortable and flattering pair of quick-drying swim trunks for hanging out at the pool or beach and for any water-based exercise. These board shorts by Vuori have a scalloped leg for maximum mobility and what they describe as a “high-performance fit.” At 90% polyester and 10% stretchy elastane, these 7.5-inch inseam shorts provide all-day comfort and an athletic feel.
A weighted vest is a great gift for the diehard fitness type who loves to make ordinary bodyweight exercises like push-ups, pull-ups, walking lunges, and running extra challenging by adding resistance. This vest by Runmax comes with a minimum of 20 pounds of removable weight that fits into strategically placed pockets for equal distribution to add comfort and keep undue strain off the shoulders and lower back. Bonus features include a phone pocket and water bottle holder.
[$37 (was $60); amazon.com]
Health nuts and fitness diehards often don’t want to rely on convenience stores and restaurants for their food when traveling or running around town for the day, and the Hydro Flask Carry Out Soft Cooler is the perfect companion for these people. It’s a big enough cooler at 20 liters to hold a day’s worth of food, drinks, and supplements, keeping it all cold for up to 24 hours, but light enough to carry along to the gym or a social gathering. With Hydro Flask, you’re getting a much lower price tag than some other brands while sacrificing nothing in terms of quality and functionality.
These adjustable dumbbells are the best choice for anyone looking for a high-quality, affordable set of free weights from a trusted brand (NordicTrack doesn’t just do cardio anymore). They feature a smooth weight selection system that lets you quickly change resistance in 2.5- or 5-pound increments from 5 to 55 pounds with a simple pull of a plastic tab. The set also includes molded storage trays with printed weight markings to keep your home gym organized.
These make the perfect fitness gift for the guy who wants something he can wear at the gym and then leave on for pure comfort at home or around town. These aren’t just fashion track sweats—Adidas equipped them for serious workouts, with a breathable material to wick sweat and zip pockets to securely hold a phone or keys during a training session or run.
[$63 (was $70); adidas.com]
If the fitness lover on your shopping list does any amount of running, this is the running shoe to get him. The Asics Gel-Kayano is specifically designed for runners with neutral and overpronating foot types, but even if you don’t have the first clue how your giftee’s foot strikes the pavement, this is a great all-around runner that guys go nuts about. It’s packed with performance technology like the OrthoLite sock liner (for comfort), Asics’ gel (shock absorption), and the brand’s Litetruss (medial support), and the 29 model is a great value that’s been discounted a lot lately.
[From $88 (was $160); amazon.com]
Attention fitness lovers (and those seeking gifts for fitness lovers): One of the best ways to develop functional muscle and grip strength is through sandbag training. This sandbag from Yes4All will provide years of dynamic workouts with its heavy-duty nylon cordura construction and reinforced handles on all sides that allow for multiple grip placements. It comes in four sizes (small, medium, large, and extra-large) that hold between 25 and 200 pounds of sand. This particular bag gets favorable reviews (an average of 4.4 stars) from over 2,000 Amazon customers.
[From $35; amazon.com]
Most modern backpacks are designed for the typical professional lugging a laptop and little else to the office. The Wolfpak backpack, on the other hand, is specifically intended for working out and makes one of the best gifts for guys who go to the gym or play sports. Created for bodybuilders, this 35L model has two side holders for shaker cups, plenty of room for workout gear and shoes, and is made of tough waterproof polyester. It’s a great gym bag but works for just about any excursion.
Preconceived notions be damned: Lululemon isn’t just for women, or yoga. The Warp Light Packable Jacket was made expressly for men who train. It’s water-repellent and is made of a stretchy, breathable fabric that makes it perfect for outdoor workouts or running in cool weather. With zip pockets, a hidden phone sleeve, a just-incase hood, and its ability to fold down and pack into itself, this utility jacket lends itself to convenience. The fit guy on your shopping list may not buy this for himself, but he sure would love to unwrap one.
If the guy on your shopping list doesn’t already have pushup handles in his home gym, he needs some. With this pair, he’ll get a great upper body workout with less strain on the shoulder joints, elbows, and wrists than standard hands-on-floor pushups thanks to the rotating ergonomic grips that provide a smooth motion via a steel ball-bearing system. Rubber tread on the bottom keeps the handles stable on all floor surfaces.
A high-end jump rope is a must for anyone doing high-intensity cardio workouts at home, and Elitessrs is a top brand in the category. What makes this one better than a standard jump rope is its ball bearings and tapered grip that make for smooth, effortless (and fast) revolutions. The “rope” part is made of PVC with a special core for durability. Also fully adjustable, it’s a great option whether he’s doing high-rep double-unders or not.
Any kitchen appliance that helps a guy eat cleaner is a great gift for a health nut. Air fryers have become wildly popular in recent years for just that purpose. This cost-effective model by Ninja has a temperature range of around 100-400 degrees and a 4-in-1 feature set for air-frying, roasting, reheating, and dehydrating foods. It’s ideal for making healthier versions of chicken wings, fries, tater tots, and even pizza. The basket is even dishwasher safe.
The serious health fanatic will love this gift. The Whoop is a popular wearable device that wraps comfortably around the wrist and tracks many key metrics of health and fitness including sleep quality, exercise recovery, and even overall daily “strain” (which includes both physical and mental stress). Whoop is best known for its sleep-tracking capabilities, measuring all four stages of slumber with high accuracy. Best of all, gifting Whoop to a partner, parent, sibling, or friend is easy, with both 12- and 24-month pre-paid memberships available.
[From $239 (12-month gift membership); whoop.com]
Utterly simple and highly versatile, a plyometric, or plyo, box is a great gift for gym lovers. Each Yes4All box can be used at three different heights, from 12 to 30 inches, for leg exercises like box jumps, step-ups, and box dips simply by rotating the cube to a different side. The key feature of this one is that it’s padded on the outside (with a wooden core inside) to keep the shins safe from painful scraping on the edges.
[From $63; amazon.com]
Knowledge is power, and nobody drops health and fitness knowledge these days more intelligently than Dr. Peter Attia. In his New York Times #1 Bestseller, Outlive: The Science and Art of Longevity, Attia delivers a masterclass on how to live a longer, healthier life without relying on prescription medications. The book focuses on exercise, food, and emotional health to enhance longevity with actionable advice from start to finish. This is a must-read for health nuts and fitness lovers. It’s available as a hardcover, paperback, spiral-bound, audiobook, or digitally for Kindle.
The Gorilla Mat is perfect for the guy who works out at home but wants a gym-caliber floor beneath him when doing squats, jumps, or any other full-body exercise. The durable ProFoam mat provides a non-slip, shock-absorbing surface that can go over the top carpet, hardwoods, laminate, or tile. At 6 feet by 4 feet by 1/4-inch, it rolls up for easy storage yet stays flat while in use. This mat will help save your floors as well as your joints (ankles, knees, hips).
The name says it all here: Designed For Training Shorts. Adidas delivers a great gym gift for men with these lightweight, stretchy workout shorts. Our favorite features include the Aeroready material that stays dry, zip pockets to keep a phone or keys secure, and split sides to allow for a full range of motion during workouts and recreational sports.
[$36 (was $40); adidas.com]
This warm outer layer by The North Face is the perfect gift for runners and fitness lovers who brave the outdoors in the cold weather months. It’s made of a waterproof and windproof fabric, and the fit is designed for mobility through the chest and shoulders, which will come in handy during runs and HIIT workouts. It also has extra ventilation in the armpits, because there’s nothing worse than getting sweaty out in the cold.
Combine a high-end stainless steel insulated water bottle with the functionality of a shaker cup and you get the Ice Shaker. This is the perfect gift for a gym guy who mixes protein shakes, pre-workouts, and/or amino acid drinks on the daily. The Ice Shaker has a high-tech agitator to deliver a perfect blend every time, insulated walls that keep liquids cold for over 30 hours, and a travel-friendly design that fits in cup holders.
Every home gym should contain a set of resistance bands because they offer a variety of uses, like standard dumbbell and barbell exercises, are easy on the joints, and the variable resistance they provide (where the force increases the more the band is stretched) places a unique stimulus on the muscles to build strength. This loop-style set by Sunpow includes five different resistance weights and offers more exercise options than bands with handles on either end. The heavier bands can also be used for assisted pull-ups and dips for those who have difficulty doing bodyweight-only sets.
Guys who go hard in the gym or on the running trails need quick relief from muscle pain and tightness, and foam rollers are the simplest, most affordable recovery tools you can find. We like this 13-inch TriggerPoint roller because its grooves and nubs are great at hitting hard-to-reach areas in the muscles to provide a thorough soft-tissue massage. It’s the next best thing to having an actual massage therapist do the work and a must-have in any fit guy’s mobility toolbox.
[$32 (was $37); amazon.com]
Who is this gift for? Simple: The guy who’s gung-ho about lifting and cardio but mostly (or completely) ignores stretching and mobility work. Pliability (formerly called Romwod) is a daily guided flexibility routine for all areas of the body that, unlike many other mobility workouts, requires zero equipment outside of an exercise mat. Using the Pliability app or website, click on the day’s routine and a coach tells you exactly what stretches to do. Each routine is around 20 minutes, with one weekly “Warrior” routine that’s roughly twice as long—but don’t worry, short versions are available if you need something quicker.
[$14 per month; pliability.com]
Bathroom scales have come a long way from just measuring weight. The fitness lover on your shopping list can measure his progress daily with this Withings Smart Scale. It does way more than just body weight—it also records body fat percentage, water weight, and a handful of other key health metrics. It’s easy to use and syncs with Apple Health and Google Fit apps for long-term tracking.
Whether as a stocking stuffer or white elephant gift, Feetures makes some of the best socks for runners. These no-shows with tabs offer a super comfortable, snug fit that won’t slide down in the back at all (this coming from an MJ writer who’s been wearing a pair for years). At 92% nylon and 8% spandex, the feet stay cool and dry whether you’re on a long run or sweating it out in the gym.
This is the perfect gift for the gym bro who travels a lot. ClassPass is a membership-based app that gives the user access to gyms, boutique fitness studios, and spas in whatever city he finds himself at any given time. Gift ClassPass credits in whatever amount you want (say, $30 or $100), and the recipient can use it like cash to book a class or appointment on the road or even to try a new gym near home.
[From $39/month; classpass.com]
What to Know When Buying Gifts for Gym Lovers
What fitness gifts for men are the most useful?
This may sound obvious, but the most useful fitness gifts for men are the ones they’ll actually use. Multipurpose gear like resistance bands and dumbbells will probably get used more than, say, a pair of ankle weights.
Also, take inventory of what fitness gear the recipient already has. If he has a nice personal blender in his kitchen, skip that gift idea. If he already has a good set of adjustable dumbbells, he doesn’t need another. But if he has a 25-pound kettlebell and no others, gifting a 40-pound kettlebell would make sense because it helps him complete his setup.
What gift ideas for gym lovers should you not entertain?
What you don’t want to do when giving a fitness-related gift is offend the recipient. If, for example, they think you’re trying to send a message that they need to lose weight and/or get in shape because you gifted them a gym membership or fat loss supplement, that was probably not a great gift idea.
If the person specifically told you they had these goals and would like a gift to address them, then you’re in the clear. Otherwise, try to select a gift that adds to something they’re already doing; for instance, a weight-lifting belt for a guy you know who does heavy squats and deadlifts every week, or a new pair of running shoes for an avid runner who has a road race coming up.
What are the best home workout gifts?
The best workout gifts for the home are portable and versatile—things that will fit easily into a small space, like a spare bedroom or dedicated section of an office or garage, especially if they’re able to be stowed in a drawer, storage box, or hung on wall hooks.
Gifts that fit this criteria, for example, are a medicine ball, a kettlebell, a foldable exercise/yoga mat, and a set of resistance bands. However, if you know the recipient has generous floor space and is just getting started building his home gym, consider a large, foundational piece of equipment like a power rack, pull-up/dip station, or a barbell set with weight plates.