5 of my fave purchases from 2020 + reader faves

Hi friends! I hope that you’re all doing well and hope you enjoyed the weekend. We had a great time celebrating Liv’s birthday – I can’t believe she’s 9. Our weekend was filled with cupcakes and family time, but also a guinea pig funeral. Our beloved guinea, Lollipop, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. (Apparently this isn’t uncommon for small animals, but still horrible.) Poor Liv was the one who discovered her, since they live in her room, and both of the girls were devastated. I have to admit that I was heartbroken, too.

Lollipop had such a fun personality – I taught her how to do some tricks! She was super smart, cuddly, and frequently squeaked and popcorn-ed with joy. Since I was the one who brought fresh hay, veggies, and greens from our garden, they’ve always been super happy to see me. We’ll likely get another guinea pig this week since they prefer to have a buddy, but we were all sad to sad goodbye.

For today’s post, I wanted to share some of my favorite purchases from 2020 and also your top picks from my RewardStyle analytics. I’ve shared similar posts over the past couple of years and it’s fun to look back and see the most useful and enjoyable products from the year.

My top 5 fave purchases from 2020:

1) HigherDOSE Sauna Blanket. I’ve enjoyed this thing WAY more than I was expecting. It uses infrared sauna technology, is made of nontoxic materials, low EMF, and layered with charcoal, crystals, and clay. I’m a weirdo who loves to sweat from my eyeballs, and since I’m not able to get that feeling from hot yoga as often as I’d like, this has been the perfect substitute. I know that many people think that the whole “sweat detox” thing is a myth, but I’m a believer in the detoxifying ability of a good sweat and the healing and restorative properties of infrared. My body craves this thing, especially during cold nights (!!!), so I’ll wrap up like a happy Chipotle burrito and watch 30 minutes of Netflix. 

2) Oura ring. This has made a huge difference in the way I train and my habits surrounding sleep. My Apple watch will often tell me to stop being lazy and NO OFF DAYS, SUCKER while my Oura ring is like, “Perhaps time for an off day to recover from your workouts?” You can read my full post about this little beauty here, and I love to nerd out on all of the stats. I’ve also noticed patterns in my routine that disturb my sleep or contribute to an awesome night of zzzz’s. The Oura has enabled me to remain highly active in a strategic way, during an exceptional stressful year.

3) Frette sheets. On the pricey side, but SO worth it. When I was looking at these online and explained to the Pilot that they were the same sheets the Disney cruise line uses, he told me to go for it. He was like, “How often do we buy sheets?” which is so true. It feels like a special treat because who knows when we’ll be able to cruise again, and it really transformed our bed into this peaceful, dreamy, oasis.

4) Dustbuster for my car. This is one of my top mom hacks right now. I keep this in the trunk of my car and can easily vacuum up crumbs and rogue french fries. It was inexpensive and works well.

5) This picture of Bella! This picture never ceases to bring a smile to my face. Señor Bealo. I guess now we’ll have to get one of Lollipop, too. 🙁

Reader faves from 2020:

1) My favorite bra on the planet. I usually stock up when Nordstrom has sales and have this one in so many colors. It’s pretty much the only non sports bra that I wear. It doesn’t have underwire (praise be) and still gives a little bit of lift and shape, even if you’re a fellow member of the IBTC.

2) These Hunter boots! I was so obsessed when they first came out and couldn’t wait to wear them! They’re easily my #1 pair of Hunter boots.

3) Moonlight dreams pajamas. These pajamas are super light and soft and also make a great gift!

4) My current fave mules. The Pilot and the girls make fun of these but they’re so dang comfy and look super cute with jeans a sweater.

5) Custom family portrait. Another excellent gift idea 🙂 This would be a perfect one for Valentine’s Day.

I’d love to hear any of your favorite purchases from 2020 — something that made life easier or brought your joy during such a bizarre year.

I’m off to record two new podcast episodes! I’ll have a new one up this week.



PS. Don’t forget to join us for Home Workout Warrior challenge! All of the details are here. I just finalized the prizes and they’re so, so good. All the info goes out on Saturday and we start next Monday!

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  1. liz on January 11, 2021 at 10:35 am

    I bought those hunter boots per your rec and I love them. A few months ago my husband and I splurged and bought a back chair massager and a footmassager since we can’t get massages, and it was so worth the money.

    • Fitnessista on January 11, 2021 at 6:12 pm

      i’m so happy you love them, too! a back chair massager and foot massager is such a great idea

  2. coco on January 11, 2021 at 4:05 pm

    I am loving my aura ring too, quite eye opening. I’m still in the adjusting mode with the ring as it says it takes 2-4 weeks to learn from me. but so far it has been very accurate.
    can you share what things you found to disturb and help your sleep and recovery?

    • Fitnessista on January 11, 2021 at 6:11 pm

      yes! i can’t have a huge meal before bed or drink wine too late in the evening or i sleep horribly. it also has helped me adjust my workout intensity depending on my readiness level

  3. Tracy on January 11, 2021 at 6:01 pm

    My favorite purchases were our Peloton bike (no explanation necessary!) and our air fryer. The air fryer surprised me! I never thought we would use it as much as we do. Great purchase and used by our whole family.

    • Fitnessista on January 11, 2021 at 6:12 pm

      ok i still want one and haven’t gone for it yet! you might have convinced me…

  4. Lauren on January 12, 2021 at 5:46 am

    As a new mom and milspouse, I have to say that it’s still strange to be on the other side of childhood: I have distinct memories of my sister’s hamsters passing away and how difficult it was for her every time (my sis was about Liv’s age and she ended up having 4 hamsters total). Hugs to you all!

    One of my fave things that I got this year was a pair of corduroy pants. I was tired of only wearing leggings around the house and my jeans sag post-baby…enter corduroys! The perfect bridge between sweatpants and “hard pants” lol.

  5. Annie on January 14, 2021 at 6:46 am

    I’ve read your blog for quite some time but I have to say the price points for some of the items you share is just off putting. $500 blanket, $300 ring, $550 sheets?? That’s just not realistic for many people. Maybe also offer similar alternatives that are at lower (realistic, attainable??) points? This feels tone deaf.

    • Fitnessista on January 15, 2021 at 12:22 am

      thank you so much for reading for so long. i always try to be mindful of the costs of items i share on the blog, and was glad that some of these items were lower cost (like the crown and paw and the dustbuster). i almost always share less expensive options, but in this case, i didn’t think it would make sense since this post was based on items that i loved and brought me joy – i didn’t want to link anything that i hadn’t tried myself.

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