The Gift Guide
‘Tis the season for giving and sometimes you can be stuck scratching your head about what to get for your loved ones, especially the gear heads that seems to have everything. (I am one of those people). Being a professional cyclist preparing for the World Cups, I spend countless hours hammering outside on wheels, feet, skis, boards, or whatever toy I can get my hands on. I also do that hammering in the not-so-friendly Vermont climate where shoulder seasons (or as Vermonters like to call them ‘stick season’ and ‘mud season’) can be downright rough. When I get my hands on a piece of gear that can handle what I’m bringing, I fall head over heels. Here are some things I love and hopefully will provide some gift ideas or better yet inspiration to get outside.
Usually in November you can find me hiding indoors and staying far, far away from the 35 degrees and raining that Vermont is serving up that time of year. But, things changed for me when Garneau sent me their Mid Season Hoodie and All Season Jacket. I wear these two pieces together every single ride these days. The hood integrates perfectly with my helmet. There are two holes on either side of the hoodie where the helmet straps go through and clip normally below your chin. There’s also a little bill that keeps out the elements. This hood keeps my whole head warm instead of piecing it together with a buff, hat, and headband which leaves holes for heat to escape. Because of this, I’m actually outside riding which is unheard of for me during these months. So yea, this hoodie has changed my life a little for the better.
This jacket is a trendy, warm, and waterproof pullover that happens to be in my favorite color, blue. The hood is big enough to fit really well over my helmet to add a little warmth. Put these two Garneau pieces together with a solid base layer, and I’m warm on my bike without looking like the Michelin man and feeling like I can’t move. This is a big win in my book. Bring it on rain, sleet, and snow.
Is there literally any other better combo than peanut butter and chocolate? I didn’t think so. Clif Bar fills its bars with a variety of nut butter combos and makes magic. Enough said.
When a helmet is not on my head, this is on my head in the winter. Even indoors. Seriously.
This is one of my favs. Comfortable and goes on every single trip with me.
I love cooking, and I’m really into eating good food. In an interview that I heard with Shalane, she talked about developing this cookbook after she made the switch from shorter distance track races to marathon races. She was starving after the big miles required and developed these nutritious recipes that didn’t leave her reaching for a bag of chips or eating a bowl of cereal at night. I was wondering how Shalane knew me without ever meeting me. This is the story of my life. So I purchased her cookbook and have begun cooking out of it. Plus, I love Shalane’s approach to life and athletics.
Are you missing the Little Bellas annual pro calendar? Well this is a great replacement piece for that Little Bella in your life or any cyclist for that matter. This is our limited edition art poster that sells as a fundraiser to help Little Bellas get more girls on bikes. Brighten up that wall and your day with this piece.
I’ll be sporting this on all of my cold adventures this winter. What a cool way to support Little Bellas and get more girls on bikes.
Mountain biking, hiking, or any epic adventure. This is your pack. Stay hydrated. Bring snacks. Bring spikes for your shoes for ice at the summit. Camelbak has your back.
I’m also obsessed with cooking and eating any ethic food out there with a certain penchant for Thai food. For the past ten years, I have bought countless Thai cookbooks to try and mimic the food I ate on my trip to Thailand. I recently got this Thai cookbook and it makes the best Thai food I’ve ever eaten, hand’s down, every recipe that I’ve tried. That’s an amazing feat. You won’t be sorry about having this book around if you like to cook and eat Thai food. Plus, it’s gorgeous. The photos are so good that it’s like you’re actually there.
Can you tell I love food and cooking? I’ve recently signed up for a NYT cooking subscription. NYT emails you a clever email every week with different cooking ideas. It’s inspiring. Plus, their website has a data base where you can find a recipe for any ingredient that’s been sitting in your fridge for a week begging to be cooked.
Music is motivating. Step up your game and get a subscription to Spotify. You can follow me or other athletes and listen to our playlists. Maybe what fires me up will fire you up too. You can try it for free or the subscription allows you to skip songs and also download for listening when you are offline.