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3372 Views 9 Replies Latest reply: Dec 3, 2010 8:17 PM by PowerRuff
DMR79 Rookie 2 posts since
Mar 8, 2010
Currently Being Moderated

Oct 2, 2010 1:17 PM

HRM/Running Watch Question

Alright so I know this has been posted numerous times, but I can't find feedback between the two HRM/Running Watches I'm trying to decide between. I have currently been running with, gasp my G-Shock watch, but am now training for a half marathon and eventually a full marathon so I'm looking to upgrade from what I'm currently using.


The two watches I've narrowed my choice down to (so far) are;


Garmin Forerunner 110, Men's Red Bundle (watch and heart rate monitor)


or the


Suunto t3d (Running Pack)


My issue with the Garmin is that I've read that it does not display current pace, but I've also read it displays avg pace? Not sure if this avg is for each mile and updates as you run, or if it is just at the end of your run that it will give you that information. Also concerned with it being GPS only, so I will not be able to use it when I run on the treadmill at the gym (which I do weekly), or reception issues in large cities.


My concern with the Suunto is the accuracy of the foot pod vs the GPS on the Garmin and that it will give me the the info I'm looking for.


I am mainly looking for a good quality HRM and watch that will track my distance, current pace, avg pace over the run and give me the ability to transfer that data to my Mac. I like that both of these watches are not huge like some of the others on the market. A quality product is definitely important, as I will use this watch both running and at the gym 5 days a week. Water resistant/proof would be nice as I live in Florida so both sweat and rain are concerns.




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  • Breanasouth Rookie 1 posts since
    Jun 9, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Oct 2, 2010 2:19 PM (in response to DMR79)
    Re: HRM/Running Watch Question

    I have the Garmin Forerunner 110 and LOVE it!  Some of the info that you said it couldn't do it actually does.  It does display your pace as you're running and it beeps every mile and gives you an average pace. You can use it inside or out. If you are inside it will ask you if you are inside because it can't find the satellite.  You can also use it with or without the heartrate monitor.  When you download your information to the Garmin site it will show you a map of your run and give you all types of useful information that you can't see from your watch (like caloies burned, average heartrate, etc).  I wouldn't consider any other brand!

    The only thing I wish it would do is work only using the HRM.  Maybe it does and I just haven't figured out yet. But for those days where you are not running and you just want a good weight lifting workout and track your HR it's not so good for that.

    Good luck with your training.  Hope this helps.

  • Beer and Cupcakes Legend 970 posts since
    Nov 19, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Oct 2, 2010 10:18 PM (in response to DMR79)
    Re: HRM/Running Watch Question



    Ill try and save you some frustration and cost.   I started with a Polar with the footpod.   Accuracy is a serious issue.  I calibrated it on the track, more than once.   If you run exactly the same every time,  it might work,  but add in striders,  do fast runs, slow runs,  work on your cadence (which shortens yoru stride), and the result will be OFF.   Off just enough to overtake any margin of improvement you are trying to measure.     I gave up after a few months of wrestling with it and started using a GPS app in my droid, it was love at first use.   After a few months of that I wanted something more convenient to check pace without pulling my phone out,  enabling the display etc.  Sounds simple but in the middle of a hard sweaty run its frustrating as hell.   So I researched GPS watches.  The 405 is top end but has some reported issues,  the bezel can false when your running , the RF USB port isint always reliable.  etc.      I settled on the 110,   Red like youre looking at.   I LOVE IT!!!   Its a stripped down but newer version of the 405 but the extra features in the 405 are silly, to me.  I dont want to play video games on my wrist while Im running.  I want to see pace, time, distance, heartrate.  No more.


    On your question about seeing current pace.  It does show current pace, in a way I feel is much better than instanteous pace. This is how it works.  It shows the pace for the current lap.   Most convenient is to set 1 mile laps, so you can view your mile splits when youre done and upload.  What it does is show you the average pace for the current lap.  For example, you get an idea of current pace by looking at your watch,  say it shows 8:36 pace.  Look at it again in a few seconds.  If its 8:45 that means your current pace is something slow enough to get you from 8:36 to 8:45.     You get the feel for it quickly and it becomes very intuitive.  The other day I did a hard 5 miler.  I used the watch to keep all the mile splits under 8.   By looking at the watch I could see if was creeping up on 8 and put a little more gas on.  Its a fantastic tool. The problem with instantaeos pace is the numbers tend to jump around alot.   Pretty useless.   My GPS phone app shows 2 paces, avg for the whole run and instaneous.   And both of them together were not as usefull as how the 110 works as I described above for the 1 mile splits.


    The 110 is a great watch.  I have no complaints.    You can get it for 15% off at running world by going here and clicking the visitors discount button


    Hope this helps.


    Oh one more thing.  Another thing that pushed me to the 110 over the 405, which can be had for just about the same price.  The 110 is a newer model and has a more current SIRF2  GPS chip in it, so the receiver is slightly better.  The 110 watch is also smaller than the 405.



    Virtual Racing Antagonist.  I run for beer and cupcakes.kenyan.jpg

    1 Mile PR 6:44

    5K PR 22:21 

    10K PR 48:30

    Half Marathon PR  1:48:43 

    Marathon PR - 4:09:10  

    i before e except after c, weird?

  • elev8torguy Amateur 24 posts since
    Jun 30, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Oct 4, 2010 5:20 PM (in response to DMR79)
    Re: HRM/Running Watch Question   This guy writes an awesome blog. Among many other topics, he gives  great advice on all manner of sport technology, and more to the point  GPS watches (with heart rate monitors).

  • BPEruns Rookie 1 posts since
    Nov 3, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. Nov 3, 2010 12:36 PM (in response to DMR79)
    Re: HRM/Running Watch Question

    I would definitely go for the Garmin forerunner 110. The built in GPS is more accurate than the footpod, and you dont have to calibrate it.


    I´m running with a Forerunner 405 HR and I simply just love this watch. I know that some dont like the touch bezel while it can go cracy when its raining.

    There is however a "lock" function for the bezel and this solves the problem for me.


    Based on my positiv experience with the Forerunner 405, I recommend a Garmin Forerunner watch - the 110 is a good choice.

    Please feel free to check out my site on the Garmin Forerunner 110

  • thedevotedrunner Legend 439 posts since
    Jul 7, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Nov 3, 2010 12:48 PM (in response to DMR79)
    Re: HRM/Running Watch Question

    May I offer another alternative.  Have you looked at the Garmin 305?? Very good watch with the ability to show current pace, average lap pace, average pace for the run.  You can also program workouts into it.  It does not sync to the computer wirelessly.  It uses a USB cable, but I have never found that to be a problem.  AND you can pick one up for around $135-$150.

    Running the straight and narrow,


    "Run because you love it. If you don't, learn to love it. Running will bring things into your life that you could never imagine." - Scott Jurek, Star of "Born To Run"

    The Surgeon General has determined it is OK to smoke your opponent!

    Flollow me on twitter

  • Scrufffy Legend 252 posts since
    Dec 2, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    7. Dec 3, 2010 6:29 AM (in response to DMR79)
    Re: HRM/Running Watch Question

    I have the 110. I really like it. You can set up the "lap" to be 1/4 mi up to 1 mi. It will beep at you at the end of each lap and give you the pace and time for that lap for three seconds while ou run. Down loading the data after the run, you can review instantaneous pace and or speed at any point (distance or time) during the run, along with a lot of other info. I don't use the HRM, but if you do you can look at the relationship betoeen pace and heart rate or grade and heart rate etc.


    No one watch is perfect, but the Garmin is serving me very well and its MUCH better than just a stop watch and I don't miss the optional HRM.

    Spa5k, 11/04/10, 30:58 2nd place senior

    Peace and Love 5k 3/16/11 29:05 1st place senior

    Toad Suck Daze 5k 30 April 11, 28:29 1st place age group

    2011 Spa 5k 11/19/11 25:55 1st place senior Personal Best, 2nd career

    Looking for a 10 k to run and if that goes well, a HM next spring

    A body at rest tends to stay .... on the couch!


  • PowerRuff Amateur 35 posts since
    Jul 31, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    8. Dec 3, 2010 8:17 PM (in response to Scrufffy)
    Re: HRM/Running Watch Question

    Dont mean to intrude and sneak in on your topic but to add a question of my own how well does the GPS work on the garmins? Are there "dead zones", areas were it can not track you?


  • Scrufffy Legend 252 posts since
    Dec 2, 2010
    Currently Being Moderated
    9. Dec 3, 2010 8:26 PM (in response to PowerRuff)
    Re: HRM/Running Watch Question

    I live in a very hilly area. I live near the top of one, but run up and down, into valleys, and through the forrest. I have yet to loose lock on the GPS signals.  I am impressed with the ability of the little watch (about the size of a Timex, Iron Man) to perform. When you switch the GPS mode on, it takes about a minute to obtain lock if you have had it in GPS mode some time in the last few days. If it has been off for say a week, it takes a little longer. Once locked, it just does its thing.


    It works better than some of the hand held GPS nav units I used about 10 years ago. They just keep getting better!  Now that I have been running with it, I will most likely always use one.


    Good running, Jack

    Spa5k, 11/04/10, 30:58 2nd place senior

    Peace and Love 5k 3/16/11 29:05 1st place senior

    Toad Suck Daze 5k 30 April 11, 28:29 1st place age group

    2011 Spa 5k 11/19/11 25:55 1st place senior Personal Best, 2nd career

    Looking for a 10 k to run and if that goes well, a HM next spring

    A body at rest tends to stay .... on the couch!


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