Garmin, as a company, came in to being nearly 35 years ago. Garmin was producing devices that helped pilots find their way in the skies. Is it time for you to let their modern wrist based activity trackers bring you to your next running level? Read on to find out!
Garmin Forerunner Series
Garmin’s Forerunner series of wrist based activity trackers are GPS powerhouses that are trusted by seasoned athletes and budding fitness enthusiasts worldwide. Each watch has a 2 or 3 digit number in the name which can lead to confusion, so let me break it down for you.
All Garmin Forerunner watches have inbuilt GPS systems. Therefore, they are all equipped to accurately calculate the distance you have traveled from the moment you click go, to the moment you stop your workout.
The differences between each watch are not so much to do with the run tracking capabilties, rather they are to do with the additional functions of the watch.
So before launching in to the nitty gritty, its worth noting that all watches mentioned on this page have the ability to feed notifications and incoming call alerts to your wrist from your smartphone, whether it is Android or iOS.
They all use the same Garmin Connect app on your phone to showcase the details of your exercise once you have completed an activity. All Forerunner watches provide pace, time, distance and cadence data to the wearer. They all have wrist based heart rate monitors. They can all be used outdoors and indoors for treadmill workouts. Each of these watches gives the user detailed sleep reports if worn in bed.
Both watches have the same tracking capabilities. However, it must be noted that the battery life on the Forerunner 35 is around 9 days in smartwatch mode, which is 4 days longer than that of the Forerunner 30. In activity tracking mode, the watches last 13 hours and 8 hours respectively.
So which watch should you buy? If you think this entry level pair have all the features you could ever need, the Forerunner 35 is RunWay’s choice for the extra battery. At just £130/$145/$155, it’s a fantastic watch.
These are much more sleek looking watches. With round bezels and colour displays, they are a considerable step up from the Forerunner 30 and Forerunner 35.
The sole difference between the Forerunner 45s and the Forerunner 45 is that the Forerunner 45s has a slightly smaller watch face than the Forerunner 45. This might suit those of you with smaller wrists.
For your money, not only are you getting a prettier watch, but the battery life is increased to 7 days in smartwatch mode, or 13 hours in GPS mode.
Another handy feature is Garmin Coach, which creates personalized running plans for you based on your goals and needs.
The Forerunner 45 uses both GPS and Glonass to determine your location at all times, leading to greater accuracy in tracked activity data.
Although this watch is built for runners, it does have other sport modes such as cycling, yoga and elliptical training.
Forerunner 235, Forerunner 245 and Forerunner 245 Music
Lets start with looks firstly. All three of these watches are a step above the Forerunner 45 if you ask us at RunWay! The build quality is also much more solid than that of the previously mentioned Forerunner models.
Each of these devices has a battery life of 7-9 days in smartwatch mode, and can last up to 24 hours in GPS tracking modes, which is truly impressive.
One difference between the 235 and the 245 is that there are more available tracking modes on the 245, such as trail running.
The standard Forerunner 245 does not have the ability to store music. and costs roughly £299/€335/$365.
But if music is important to you, you can opt for the Garmin Forerunner 245 Music which can store up to 500 songs on the watch. You’ll pay roughly £329/€367/$400 on Amazon for this watch.
If you have some bluetooth earphones, you can listen to music whilst tracking an outdoor run for 6 hours straight! It even gets to know your music preferences, and plays the music accordingly.
RunWay is all for listening to music whilst exercising, so this option is a must for us.
These watches are beasts. There’s no other way to say it.
They are sold by Garmin as triathlon watches, as they are equally effective at measuring running, cycling and swimming. So, if you’re partial to a triathlon here or there, this ones for you.
The Forerunner 935 and Forerunner 945 are slightly different, in that the 945 can store up to 1000 songs on the wrist. Whilst playing music and tracking your triathlon, the battery will last approximately 10 hours (if you’re an Ironman triathlete, this one might not be for you).
In GPS tracking mode without playing music, the battery life is an impressive 36 hours, so you might just go a full week of training before you need to recharge. If the watch is used as a smartwatch, you will get 2 weeks out of one charge.
This watch is for the serious athletes out there.
Last but not least…
This is RunWay’s favourite Garmin Forerunner wearable.
The Garmin Forerunner 735XT is a stand out piece of engineering, and will be an icon in its class for years to come.