Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Garmin 220

Was it coincidence or fate that my multisport watch (Garmin Forerunner 305) died at exactly the same time that I retired from triathlon?  For a while after that I ran without a GPS-enabled watch and even raced two times with just my old Timex.  I'll admit it was kind of freeing to run entirely on feel without any way to monitor pace or how far I was going.  But once I made the decision to start marathon training, I was in the market again for a good, trusty sports watch.

My choices at the time were:  Garmin 910, Garmin 610, Garmin 210, or wait for the Garmin 620 or 220 to come out.  Not being one to want to wait, I naturally nixed the last two.  As a triathlon-specific watch, the 910 has waaay more functions than I'll need for marathon training and a heavy price tag to boot (though I do not deny that my heart has greatly desired it).  So it came down to the 610 and 210 and b/c I wasn't feeling the touchscreen on the 610 I went with the 210.

First of all, the 210 was neither sleek nor sexy, but I tried not to judge a book by it's cover.  Still, from the very first run I didn't love it.  I gave it some time, but it wasn't very intuitive and worst of all it wouldn't allow me (or at least I couldn't figure it out) how to set a specific number of intervals at a specific pace with a specific amount of recovery in between.  For me this was really the deal breaker.

I took the watch back and what perfect timing!  The 620 and the 220 had just come out.  As soon as I looked at the 220 I thought it was cool and I wanted it.  After running with it once I knew it was the watch for me.  Here is what I like about it:

* As stated above, it looks cool.  AND it's my favorite color!

* It's very easy to use and intuitive. 

* Color screen (no, not necessary, but kind of nice)

*Waterproof in the rain. 

* Comes with a heart rate monitor.  More data is more better.

* Blue tooth capability for wireless upsynch to Garmin Connect.  Upon original purchase I thought this would be a bell/whistle I'd never use.  However, I use it all the time and LOVE it!  Once you log in to Garmin Connect on the web, all you have to do is download the Garmin Connect app on your smartphone and pair your watch to your phone.  (Step-by-step directions for doing this are in the Quick Start Manual that come with the watch.)  Then, anytime you open the Garmin Connect app on your phone and bring it close to your watch, all of your data will automatically upload to Garmin Connect where you can analyze it 'til your heart's content!  You can also create workouts in Garmin Connect (like the specific interval pace workouts that I like to do) and then wirelessly download them to your watch.  It really is super simple and so useful!

In summary, the Garmin 220 is the perfect watch for anyone wanting a GPS watch for running.  I highly highly recommend it!  And I also highly highly recommend purchasing it from Trysports because if you are unsatisfied with your purchase (like I was with the 210) they will let you return it and work with you to find the item that best fits your needs!  :-)



  1. Glad you like the new watch, sub 3 here we go!

  2. Thanks. I really want to get one. The Nike GPS watch that I purchased just a year ago has fallen apart. Very disappointing.