GPS Watch Advice

I’ve had a few GPS Watches over the years and I’ve either sold or retuned ALL of them in under a mont. Why? I couldn’t justify having a $200+ watch just for running, especially when I did not feel like a ‘real’ runner. Now that I am over all of that nonsense I’m seriously considering a GPS watch. I should note that I usually carry my iPhone & I almost always run outdoors. Yes, I could just use an app but I carry my phone incase I need to make a call in the event of an emergency I don’t want an app draining my battery and I don’t want to be taking my phone in and out of my pocket or belt to check stats. So unless you know about an awesome non battery killing app I need an actual watch. Help me experienced watch users, watch lovers and watch haters… talk to me about GPS watches.

I know that I do not need one, I understand it is a luxury but I believe it will help with training, right?  Does yours help you? Could you survive and train for races without it?

Pace, splits, distance, maps, and time are important to me. Maps and splits can be after the run but I’d like to be able to see pace/distance/total time on my wrist. Am I missing something else big here? What features do you find the most useful?

Nike? Garmin? Timex? Soleus? Other brands I don’t know about? Why did you choose your watch? The look? fit? brand? I like the look of the Nike + watch, especially the new colors and what I’ve seen of their website looks clean and easy to read. Nike users is this correct?

If I go with Garmin, which one? They seem to have 10 different choices. I had the 610 for about 3 weeks, I found it to be too advanced, too hard to sync and over the top for me. Which Garmin do you use and why? and how do you like the web interface?

Anything else? I’m familair with GPS watches, what they do and what they do not do. I know they are not 100% accurate and thats fine with me, I just want a simple to use watch with a decent web interface. RUNNERS please help!!!

15 comments

    Hey Josephine. I know not everyone feels this way, but honestly my advice is to be patient and wait for the Bia. It's waterproof, easy to use, syncs automatically, connects to satellites faster than anything available, AND it has an emergency feature that sends your location to a loved one and first responders. And it's cute. It's designed with women's ergonomics in mind, so theoretically it won't chafe your wrist and is infinitely sizeable no matter how big or small your wrist is. My main problems with the Garmin I had were water-resistance (it had zero), taking forever to connect to satellites and sheer size. I felt like I was wearing a big, chafe-y potato on my wrist! It'll be ready in April. I believe you can still pre-order via www.bia-sport.com.

    Cinnamon | 5 years ago Reply

      Tempting... BIA looks pretty awesome, not sure i'll be able to hold out until April though. Thanks!

      Josephine | 5 years ago Reply

    I've had a couple Garmins and a Polar and say Garmin, although have heard great things about the Moto-Activ too. Go with a base model that is cheaper and simple, the Garmins synch well and pick up pretty accurate, check out Amazon or other online places for good deals. Good luck with your choice.

    Jen | 5 years ago Reply

    Good luck! I use a Gramin forerunner - it is really complex though, but I'm one of those nutters who enjoys reading the manual and working it out. It's so handy to have one, and it can really help with training (especially speed sessions). Hope you get some great advice here.

    runwkate | 5 years ago Reply

      Thanks! I do like data, charts, splits, maps and all that fun complex stuff but I like it after the run. When I'm running I just want the basics, which forerunner do you use they seem to have so many different models?

      Josephine | 5 years ago Reply

        I know what you mean! I use the 405, and usually I just have it display distance, time and speed during a run (and/or heartrate).

        runwkate | 5 years ago Reply

    I don't use any. But I would love a garmin. Don't do the whole phone thing because half time time mine loses gps signal and i'm running around for like 20 miles when I asked to run 2... so stupid! Good luck on your search!

    Danielle (@itsaharleyylife) | 5 years ago Reply

      Eek! that doesn't sound fun. I use the Nike+ app for 4 mile and under runs but its just not ideal.I run in areas that tend to have decent signals (at least thats what im told) so hopefully I won't have signal issues =o

      Josephine | 5 years ago Reply

    My second Garmin died a couple of months ago. They each lasted about 3-4 years. I am holding out on getting a new one because I am getting the Bia watch in the spring. I cannot wait. The features and aesthetics of the watch look great, plus I LOVE the idea of the emergency feature! In the meantime I am getting by using my iPhone and Nike+ app, which does drain the battery! :(

    bethp262 | 5 years ago Reply

      thinking i may try to hold out for the Bia ;)

      Josephine | 5 years ago Reply

    Garmin. Hands down. I used Nike+ App and LOVED IT on my phone but it wasn't quite as accurate as garmin watches. And I dislike that you cannot export data from Nike+ (if you ever switch to a different format and want to take your data). I did find a very complicated workaround that took a lot of time to get my Nike+ data. Garmin rocks.

    Angie | 5 years ago Reply

    I have a Garmin FR210 and love it. And I LOVE the new special edition white one... *sigh*... If only I didn't already have one! I was debating between the Garmin and Nike when I got mine - but I decided to go with Garmin bc it is has good history of developing these devices. I agree that it sucks to drain phone battery with an app while running.

    Karen | 5 years ago Reply

      the white one looks awesome, I wonder if it'll get dirty... Nike+ has a newish white one too... I guess I could always clean it with a magic eraser

      Josephine | 5 years ago Reply

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