"

Over training is over rated, rest better so that you can train even more" - Nick Yster Bester


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

What's on your wrist?


What’s on your wrist? This question was asked on one of our local running forums. I find it quite interesting and always look at the wrists of other runners and sports people in general to see what watch or gadget they use.

There are many brands with numerous models on the market today. Garmin is probably the best known out there, but there are quite a few other popular brands as well. It all depends on what you want out of it. They all have their pros and cons.

Personally I use a Polar RS800 and a Suunto Ambit. Yes I use two and wear one on each wrist. I’ve tested both and find them both very good.


The Polar is definitely ahead on the HR side of things. The HR monitor is very accurate and the software that works with the Polar devices gives you great HR information and training possibilities using this HR information.


The Suunto is great on the GPS side of the scale. It also includes a great compass and has the feature of using waypoints when you go totally off road. I also use the barometer and altimeter a lot when I am out on the trails.

In short I would say the Polar is great for road running and I use all its features for my road training runs. On the trails I prefer the Suunto with its awesome GPS, altimeter and barometer. Most of the time I wear both. I use the Polar with its HR monitor and the Suunto with its GPS, altimeter, barometer and compass. Both have thermometers as well.

After each run I collect all the data from both and then this stats geek is in heaven! :D

The other very important feature for me is battery life. Many watches only have 8 to 10 hours of battery life when you use a HR monitor and GPS. I often run longer than that so battery life is very important to me. Both these watches give me long battery life and I can do my full day runs easily with HR and GPS active.

With the combination of these two devices I get everything I want and there are plenty features I don’t even use.


What’s on your wrist?

17 comments:

Karien P. said...

Very interesting that you run with two watches at the same time! I love my Garmin Forerunner 410 - very reliable and it gives me all the data I want :) .

Robin said...

I actually use a Nike+ GPS Sportswatch and like that it's simple to use and has all the features you need. However if I was to move more towards ultras and trail, I'd also go with the Suunto (may be in my future). I understand it also has a longer battery life :)

Michael said...

Garmin 910. For Triathletes I think it's the only way to go because it can track swim, bike, and run both indoors and outside (if you have the additional sensors for the bike and run). So I love it. It lasted me my half Ironman with no issues, but I would never have any reason to need it over 7 hours or so at this point :)

Ryan Stephens said...

Now that I'm getting more serious about running I'm looking for a relatively simple GPS watch. I'm thinking that if don't spend too much time worrying about HR zones, the Garmin Forerunner 10 might be a good fit?

Jim ... 50after40 said...

I still wear the old Garmin Forerunner 305. Big and clunky - yes. Very unstylish - yes. But I've just gotten used to it over time and it seems to do the trick.

Char said...

I've got the Garmin 410. There are a lot of features that I don't use with it so might downsize next time. All I really want in a watch is the time, distance, pace, lap timers, ability to connect with the computer and heart rate.

Thomas Bussiere said...

I have both Garmin and Polar, but use neither. Naked wrist. I would get too involved with the data and forget to just run with a free spirit. I have a good feel for my HR and level of effort.

misszippy said...

It is amazing how much there is available, especially if you come from an era when there was next to nothing! Right now I am using my Garmin GPS with a HRM for MAF training.

ajh said...

Sometimes nothing. During a triathlon a sports watch I like for laps and water and my Garmin during the run so I can get my splits. My bike does my distance and pace.

Detroit Runner(Jeff) said...

I use the Garmin 310xt which also lasts a long time but happy I don't run 8-10 hours typically.

Jill said...

I have an ancient Garmin 405. I noticed lately that the HRM is skyrocketing to the mid 200s (like 250+) so something's up with it...I think it's the band. It also doesn't have a long-lasting battery so one day I'd like to get another. I'd like the Garmin 910xt, for the rare occasions I swim in open water (like that was ONCE this whole year...trail racing and open water swimming I'm finding do not go hand in hand :)).

LOVE you wear two watches...I've been known to do the same thing.

coach dion said...

Ms 310xt is my current girlfriend and she is very nice to me, but there are a couple of time when she lies... (because i know I can't run that fast anymore!!!)

Lisa said...

and old forerunner 205

Lauren said...

Garmin Forerunner 305. I charge while I'm running at hour 8 to get 8 more hours (16 total) using a battery phone charger. :) I would love to purchase one with a longer battery life, but can't right now. Charging on the run works well, except the batteries get extremely hot during the process.

Black Knight said...

Interesting post, I have always had a Garmin, this is my 3rd.
About rugby, what a pity I have missed that match!

Nick said...

I have a basic Polar heart rate monitor whose watch strap I've repaired a few times (with superglue and a soldering iron) and a battery that's about to expire. When it does I'm considering going clean wrist because I can't be bothered with technological encumberances. I've never owned a GPS. I guess that makes a rebel, a heathen or just a plain old fart. ;-)

lindsay said...

Whoa - so fancy! I have a Garmin. I used to wear a Polar but I'd rather have HR & GPS in one (and my Polar battery died and I've yet to replace it). But Polar is definitely leap years better than my Garmin HRM!