I’m not gonna lie, I hate running. I consider myself a cyclist first, and triathlete second. But unfortunately, running is a part of triathlon, and in order to lower my overall time and stay competitive, I have to pretend I’m chasing the great myth of the runner’s high. To all of you runners out there, I apologize. You’re amazing. I suck.
Because I suck at running, and I love cycling, the Garmin Forerunner 10 is the best purchase I’ve made this year. I’ve had a Garmin Edge 500 on my bike for a few years, and I’m thrilled with it. But I’ve found it difficult to stay on pace during the run leg of a triathlon. Since I didn’t want to, or need to, throw down another $400 for a fancy Forerunner 910–and since it seemed pretty redundant considering my Edge is an amazing cycling computer–the $129 price tag (before team discount, which is why you should join a team) seemed perfect to complement my other gear.
Why is the Garmin 10 exactly what the cycling triathlete needs? Simplicity. It’s waterproof, so I can wear it during the swim while the clock is running. It gives me an exact overall time during my race, and I don’t have to worry about touching it until the run leg begins. At T2, I simply press the Run button, and I can stay on my preset pace while still watching my overall time.
No Footpod Necessary: Although some may not care for this watch because you can’t use it for treadmill running, I figure the treadmill is counting all that information for me when I’m inside. Plus, the footpods that other watches require tend to run out of juice quickly with heavy use, and then they’re destined for the garbage. This watch doesn’t require any extra pieces, and the GPS in the Forerunner 10 works great outdoors.
Easily Customized with Only the Most Important Features: With only two screens to customize, this watch is simple and easy to use. On page one, I have my pace and distance. On page two, overall time and calorie count. You can set these up with different combinations to best meet your needs. You can also set a pace alert to let you know when you’re on, ahead of, or behind your preset pace. The only qualm I have with this is that the GPS takes a little time to catch up to your speed changes, so it takes a little bit of running before you can really hit your preset pace. The alerts have a tendency to throw this off a bit–there’s a lag here between you being on to ahead of pace–so I ended up turning them off. Plus, the repetitive noise is a bit annoying. It’s easier to simply watch your pace change, and then try to make it stick at the speed you’d like to run. If you’re jogging with a stroller, it’s nice to wrap the watch around the jogger handle, so it’s in your line of vision the entire time. Aside from this, the personal record and Virtual Pacer features are pretty cool. Feel proud of yourself when you’ve beat your personal best mile, and race against a virtual partner to keep you training at your best. With four very simple buttons, you can get out and running without much hassle or set-up involved.
Time Between Charges: The battery life is rather good. I have worn it as a watch, and it lasts for days on end. When using GPS, the battery life is listed at 10 hours–so I charge it about every week or two, depending on how long and often I’m running that week. Fair warning: it does take several hours to reach a full charge, so be prepared to leave it plugged in overnight.
Assortment of Sizes and Colors: Perhaps my favorite thing about this watch is choice. I liked the green best, but the colors range from purple to black. Although I wish a powder blue was included in the selection, these colors should make just about everyone happy. Also, Garmin has thrown in an orange and a black version that are both larger, so my fellow females may be more inclined to stick with lighter options. The smaller size of the green model fits great on my small to medium wrist. I have tried on my husband’s 910, and that thing is almost like strapping on a smart phone. So, for anyone with a smaller wrist (male or female), the Forerunner 10 is an excellent choice.
Overall, I love my Forerunner 10. If you’re looking for something that will count your swim strokes, or work as a cyclocomputer, this won’t cut it. But if you’re like me, and you just need something simple to keep you on pace and racing hard, this will be the perfect fit for you.