First day experience with Garmin Forerunner 305

After having spent the last 3 years with my Polar RS200sd Heart Rate Monitor Watch (Red)
with footpod and HRM (currently USD 195), it was time to move on. I never turned into a person who gave a damn about how his heart beat, though I do give a big damn of how my heart ‘thinks’, and that’s enough to keeps me running. Plus, the Polar with its footpod was never consistent enough with the pacing and distance, and that was a big turn off for me, even though its HRM technology is considered the best out there.

Its no surprise that I ordered the Garmin Forerunner 305 GPS Receiver With Heart Rate Monitor (USD 162). It is the most popular device in the world in its category, and has consistently been in the Amazon Bestsellers in Electronics list, currently at #13 there. I got it over Amazon, had it delivered to a contact’s address in US, and had my friend pick it up for me while on a trip. Delivery happened in a couple of days of order placement, cool.

So, the day I got my watch, I was back from work early to play with it. Installed the latest version of the training software, Garmin Training Center. Also, got the firmware upgraded to the latest, greatest and just released version 2.90 while the watch was shipped with the previous version 2.80. Charging happened over the USB over computer, and it did get hold of a few satellites from my apartment balcony.

Next day morning, I was out with my toy, trying to test out its accuracy. I am hugely sensitive to having distances measured accurately, whether it is someone organizing a 5K, 10K or a marathon, or whether I am doing my leisurely daily jog. So, this park near my place has a Google pedometer / mapmyrun / dailymile measured perimeter of 1.44 KM. I ran three rounds of it and got readings of 1.42, 1.43 and 1.43, and that was good enough for me. Bang for my bucks.

There’s lot more to play, and all of that will take time. There’s a virtual partner you can setup with a fixed pace or completion time, and then the watch will help you to keep up with him. There are workouts you can setup on your computer and ‘schedule’ to your watch to be run on specified days. Looking forward to learning all that and more.

More updates: Over the next several weeks, I have run multiple 10K runs over the same 1.43K route, and have got very precise distance measurements. Most laps are 1.43, and an occasional 1.42 or 1.44, so this is as good as I can expect it to be. I now have a lot of confidence that the pace I am seeing on the watch is the true pace, something I never got to believe with the Polar one.

I guess I will just put my Polar at 50% rate on eBay and see how it goes. The footpod may not be that accurate for me, and maybe someone will buy it just for its HRM capabilities (Update June 9: Sold).

Interested? Check out these two devices at Amazon store:

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