Dec 17, 2012

Christmas Gifts

Here is a list of ''on-a-budget'' holiday gift ideas for the bike lovers in your life.  Or for those who you want to strongly encourage kindling a new love for bicycles ;). 

1. Bike jewelery made by Carlee.  There's no better way to a girl's heart than with jewlery.  And you don't need to sell a disc wheel to afford these earrings.  (Two pair for $25!).  They're made by a girl named Carlee and sold at Bikeland Barrie (Barrie, ON, Canada's best bike shop).  Call 705-726-7372 to order yours.  I have some :)

2.  Bike t-shirt Dark Cycle Clothing has an impressive collection of original cycling-themed t-shirt designs.  I have a whole closet full of prints of different animals riding an assortment of bicycles.  They're printed on American Apparel cotton t-shirts, and are available for women, men, and kiddies.
3. Gingerbread men.  Listen, there aren't any cyclists who don't like fresh cookies or pastries.  Gingerbread men will please any one of them.  I made a whole pile of them and this morning, shipped them off to some lucky recipients!
4. Race DVD.  In the winter, the majority of us rack up at least a few hours in front of the TV on our bikes.  There's nothing more motivating than having a bike race playing while you pedal along, and you can't have too many races in your DVD collection.  Suggestion: New World Disorder (Freeride DVDs)  and World Cycling Productions where you can even get the 2012 Giro D'Italia and relive Ryder Hesjedal's amazing feat!

5. Cycling Apparel : Champion Systems gives you the chance to offer your loved ones the chance to wear the colours of some of the best known teams in America!  You can offer the same gear that Optum Pro Cycling wears while training and racing as a gift that is bound to be adored!  Check it out here. (How about arm warmers, a cycling cap, or new gloves?)
6. Bike tubes : Listen, if you're really on a tight budget, a cyclist can't really have too many spare tubes (size : 700 x 23 cc and ask for a presta valve), for $5 each.  If you want to go full out, throw in a couple of 16g CO2 cartridges (same price).   Sometimes practical gifts are the best.

7.  Embrocation.  The only bad weather is weather that you're not properly dressed for.  An essential element in any cyclist's winter or spring pre-ride bag is embrocation : warming cream.  Chamois Butt'r is a company that makes a super balm that I really love and it's on sale right now at Competitive Cyclist for under $15!
8. Coffee.  A gift certificate for the best java shops in your favorite cyclist's region, a french press coffee maker (so easy to travel with) or a stove-top espresso pot are no-fail presents that are useful and fun.

9. Magazine subscriptionCanadain Cycling and Pedal, are a couple of magazines that can be delivered to whoever is on your list.  There is something for everyone in each edition, and it's a gift that truly does last all year long.

10.  Nailpolish.  Okay listen this might be less of a suggestion for you and your loved ones, and more of a personal wish. It's tough to have too many colours of nailpolish.  I'm hoping to find some new colours of high quality 'vernis à ongles' in my stocking this year... If you send me some, I'll feature a picture of the end result online :).

Go big or go home.
  There are a couple of gifts that you're bound to be thanked rather profusely for.  The Compex electro-muscle stimulator has saved my legs time after time, and if I didn't have one, it would definitely be on my wish list.
The Kurt Kinetic Rock and Roll trainer would also be high up on my list.  It's got the smoothest resistance unit in the industry and pivots with my bike so I have a more realistic feeling when I crank out my highest watts.  Plus, it doesn't strain my Orbea frame like a typical trainer would because it moves WITH it instead of against it.

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