Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a bit of a gadget freak!! I love training data, I don’t always use it to its full extent, but love having it.
There are so many different ways of tracking your training these days between phone apps, watches and old school methods the choice is often confusing.
What are the main differences between the running watches brands – I always see Garmins everywhere, what separates them from the rest and at what stage of running should a runner need to equip themselves with one.
So to try and clear up a common belief (similar to ‘Which shoe is the best?’) about watches:
My thoughts –
*Remain impartial Sean!!*
‘Garmin’ is synominous with running watches in the same way that ‘Hoover’ is to vacuum cleaning.
Garmin developed GPS tracking systems and brought them to the hands and arms of people for a multitude of purposes (sailing, trekking etc) as a result most people looking for a Garmin are in fact looking for a GPS tracker to track their distance and paces.
Not to get into it too much but measuring improvement by distance and pace is not the way to develop as a runner. The true measure is via comparative Heart Rate readings or Perceived Effort at a particular pace or distance field test.
Pretty much all the main brands Garmin, Polar, Suunto, Timex, TomTom etc all use GPS to plot your track – distance, mapping etc and most offer Heart Rate as an option. Polar developed HR in the same way Garmin did GPS and my bias is that I have used Polar from the start (hence why I’m know as PolarBoy).
Re when to start? When I started, I started training immediately with HR tracking. I used MapMyRun for planning routes and simply used a Polar RS200 to measure time and HR. A pen and paper kept track of the information (Facebook wasn’t around in those days!!)
Now while I am PolarBoy and currently use the V800 as my training watch (I always wore my Polar as a timekeeper too) despite how it looks I can not allow my personal feelings to bias my recommendation as to the best value GPS training watch on the market at the moment.
As a customer once we establish that you are looking for a GPS tracking watch when we compare the functions, features and costs the Polar M400 is the watch that you will choose over any other brand on the market at the moment.
With the activity monitor, Flow website, training dairy and customisable training targets, I have yet to see anyone disappointed with this choice!