Saturday, August 27, 2011

Product Review: Garmin 210

I remember my freshman year of college, way back in 2004, when a friend of mine gave me his ipod because he was leaving on a mission and thought it would be outdated by the time he got back. What?! I thought he was crazy (he was talking to a girl who still listened to music on a CD player), and happily accepted the gift and jogged around town with my clunky first generation ipod for months. I've obviously moved on from that ancient artifact, in the ongoing search to get sleeker, easier-to-carry stuff, like my pink nano. Why am I telling you this? Because I love stuff. Especially when it is top of the line, techno-gadgetry that I know nothing about [initially] but research it like I would an english paper... ok, probably a little more research that an english paper, but you catch the drift.

All my friends wear Garmin watches. I should be more honest with that statement and say that all my RUNNER friends who are serious about running and training [and have enough money] have a Garmin watch. I've wanted one for at least a year [you know, since I found out that they existed and were actually affordable], and when I realized I no longer had to drive the route I wanted to run to know the mileage, running suddenly got a lot more fun. 

Disclaimer: While I wish I got free stuff out of giving these reviews, I do not. 
My sole purpose of doing them is to pay it forward since I read a bazillion reviews off of Amazon, blogs, etc, before ever purchasing anything remotely expensive. These opinions are all my own.
This is my Garmin 210. I am smiling like a goof because I LOVE it.
Don't think about the peculiarity of the numbers too much, it's just a Photobooth picture.

The rundown [from Garmin.com]:
"Forerunner 210 gives you the freedom to train indoors or out, while tracking every minute and every mile. This GPS-enabled sports watch accurately records how far, how fast and how hard you worked.
We made the Forerunner 210 simple to use so you can focus on your workout. Out of the box, you’ll charge it, take it outside to find GPS satellites and answer a few setup questions. Then just press start and take off. Once you’re done, press stop. It really is that easy."

CONS:
-Pricetag (isn't that the way it is for all good purchases??): My base-model 210 was about $200 and I opted for the heartrate monitor, because I like knowing my heartrate.
-You have to plug in the watch and sync it manually to the computer. I like this method better than wireless because I feel like I have more control, but I know some peple don't like that sort of hassle. I plug mine into my computer once a week to upload and look over my workouts (usually Sunday).
-With that said, sometimes the syncing doesn't work the first time... or the second time. But I just keep "syncing" till it works... all while singing justin timberlake music of course.
-It is not compatible with Google Chrome, which drives me NUTS because I hate using Safari, but I suck it up and just hope that someday soon there will come an update with that :)
-You have to buy heart rate monitor and foot pod (so that it will work indoors) separately. Which is a pain, and I will probably cave and get the foot pod once the weather gets cold, but for now, I usually use my heart rate monitor on my long runs (not every run), but will probably use it every run the next time I get pregnant, since it has customizeable heart-rate alerts.

PROS:
-Um it looks normal on my arm. And not hugely screaming "I'm a running GPS watch!!" Sometimes I wear it as my regular watch for about a week [as long as the satellite is turned off, which it does automatically within 30 seconds if you are not actively using it] before I have to charge it.
-Four easy to use buttons. I hate touchscreen while I run, so for me this is a huge plus.
-Live distance, pace and heart rate readouts. I love knowing all that stuff as it is happening.
-Customizeable for interval workouts. I have only used this once, but its a GREAT feature. You can also get it to beep at you at every interval (or mile, which I usually use on my runs) so I'm not constantly checking to see if I hit that mile marker or not.
-ADVENTURE!! I love being able to just turn this sucker on and go for a run and not have to plan or map it out beforehand! This one little extra step really makes running so much more enjoyable to me, knowing I can just go for a run and not have to worry myself with numbers.
-Heart rate monitor makes calorie burning tracking much more accurate. Usually calorie trackers gage about 100 calories a mile, but I only burn about 70 to 80. So I like knowing just how many calories I am burning so as not to eat more Swiss Rolls than my body can handle :)
-Just like the description said, I literally took it out of the box, charged it, took 30 seconds to input my profile info, and went out for a run. It is by far the simplest setup of all the Garmins, and was the deal-maker for me to buy it as opposed to any of its more advanced cousins.

OVERALL...
I love it. Can't you tell?? There are very few runs I use my ipod with these days.. but the watch ALWAYS comes with me.

1 comment:

Missy said...

Great review! I have the Garmin Forerunner 305 and love it! I don't think I can ever run without it!

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