Exploring Garmin’s Latest Running Technology

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Running has been and always will be one of the most accessible sports. The startup costs are minimal as you only really need a good pair of trainers and yourself! However, over the last 10 years running tech has been on the rise, with companies like Garmin, Fitbit, and Apple innovating to help people improve or start their running journey.

Whether you want to master your heart rate and recovery or perfect your VO2 max, there’s a running gadget for you! However, like running trainers aren’t a one-size-fits-all solution, some gadgets will work for your goals better than others.

Smartwatches

Modern smartwatches and fitness trackers provide data from your runs. They track metrics like pace, distance, heart rate and even VO2 Max and Lactate Threshold. Some models have built-in coaching programs, personalized feedback, and recovery advice, acting as a personal coach on your wrist. With so many fantastic brands on the market, it’s hard to pick the right one for you. With this in mind, here’s a breakdown of some of the Garmin gear, from entry-level to elite.

Garmin

After testing Fitbits, Apple Watches, Garmin, and recently Whoop, I can confidently say that Garmin is a top performer in the running watch game. They have been industry innovators from the beginning of running smartwatches and continue developing products that cater to every runner’s needs. In terms of user experience, they function like many other smartwatch brands with a user-friendly app to sync health data, which can be conveniently viewed on your phone.

Garmin watches come in a wide price range, with the most budget-friendly starting at around $100 to the high-end costing $900. What sets these watches apart is their ability to be as simple or complex as you want them to be.

Garmin’s entry-level watch is the Forerunner 55, priced at $249.00. The Forerunner was my first Garmin watch, and I loved it. This edition has improved battery life from previous models, which is particularly helpful if you use the watch for everyday use alongside running. Like all watches the GPS and tracking drain the battery more than regular wear, however, this is only as expected. New features include race predictions and recovery advice. The watch also features built-in GPS, wrist-based heart rate monitoring, Garmin Coach, suggested daily workouts, recovery advisors, and more and is the perfect entry-level watch. The main downside to this watch is that it does not track strength training and has a lower screen quality than some of the higher models. All-in-all, this is a fantastic entry-level running watch!

If you are looking for a more advanced watch, the Forerunner 265 is a great option. This watch retails for $449.99 and includes many high-end features, without the whopping price tag of some of Garmin’s high-end watches. Visually, this watch is similar to its predecessor. The watch comes in two sizes, one larger, with a 1.3-inch display, and one smaller with a 1.1-inch display. The features are brilliant; the watch has a plethora of widgets and tracking capabilities. Every day you receive a morning report with your sleep stats, stress levels and recovery, which helps to set up the day. The watch can be used to track a variety of activities including running, cycling, swimming, skiing, and more! Not to mention, the built-in features are fantastic, with a bright display, up to 20 hours of battery life in GPS mode, advanced training, and metrics like VO2 Max and recovery status, multi-brand GPS, touchscreen, and music on your wrist. This watch is a thorough all-rounder, the only downside is the mapping is less detailed, featuring just a directional line, rather than the detailed navigation you receive with the Fenix 5s, Forerunner 955 and Fenix 7/pro.

On the elite end of Garmin watches is the Fenix 7pro; which currently has fantastic reviews. The watch has been said to bridge the gap between the popular Fenix 6 and the Apple watch, featuring the most popular features from both! This watch features everything: sleep tracking, military-style GPS, multisport use, contactless payment, music on your wrist, 73 hours in GPS mode, a solar charging panel, an LED flashlight, a red safety light and strobe mode. The military-style GPS is a real game-changer, providing far more accurate tracking in remote areas. Not to mention, this watch has some of the most accurate and detailed metrics of any smartwatch; featuring surf-ready features, MTB dynamics, HIIT workouts, daily suggested workouts, visual race predictor, and race pro-technology. The navigation and Spotify on this watch make it even more accessible for hands-free running! The watch is impressive; however, it comes with a hefty price tag of $899, currently reduced to $699. While it offers fantastic features, it may be more advanced than most runners need.

Off-grid/trail running

With the boundaries of running being pushed each day, with groundbreaking races like the Jungle Marathon in Brazil, Tor des Geants in Italy and the Transalpine Run through Germany, Italy and Austria growing in popularity, some runners are purchasing Garmin’s InReach. This product is used by walkers and runners alike, and is a helpful tool for those exploring areas with less signal! The device is a compact satellite communicator, helping you stay in touch with home when off-grid. This device has global satellite coverage and can keep you connected when phones can’t, it features Tracback routing, holds up to 14 days of battery and can send interactive SOS messages to coordination centres.
These watches and gadgets are equally liked by those at work in remote locations as hardcore runners and walkers. Global Telesat Communications (GTC) is an authorised dealer for Garmin, largely supplying their InReach, Extrex and Montana range. The company required a flexible exhibition stand design by Quadrant2Design, as they were exhibiting at The National Outdoor Expo and The Health and Safety Event. Their presence at The Health & Safety event was designed to introduce workers in remote locations to the device, so they might be able to make emergency contact if needed. The contrasting trade show presences demonstrate how useful Garmin products are for running, walking and safety when running, exploring, or working outdoors!

Conclusion

In conclusion, the latest Garmin running tech offers a wide range of options to cater to the needs of all types of runners, from beginners to elite athletes. With features like advanced metrics, coaching programs, and safety tools, Garmin’s smartwatches and devices have become essential companions for runners looking to improve their performance, monitor their health, and push running boundaries. Whether it’s the entry-level Forerunner 55 or the elite Fenix 7, Garmin’s products continue to set the bar high in the realm of running technology.

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