Sunday, February 9, 2014

By the Old Garmin and the New

Remember when I lost my RoadID?  I finally broke down and ordered a new one, and then found the old one the very same day that its replacement arrived.

It's a good thing I learned my lesson.  Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.

 You see, I'd misplaced my Garmin at some point in the Summer, and it had gotten to the point where I was using that (as an admittedly weak) excuse for being even more sloppy in my training than usual.

Following the KidsPeace Orioles Trick-or-Trot 5K, Chris and I stopped at Charm City Run's McHenry Row store, and I purchased a new Garmin Forerunner 10.  Of course, one week later, I found my (somewhat) trusty Garmin Forerunner 201.

As you can see, the Forerunner 10 on the left is roughly half the size of the 201.  Indeed, it is only a little or no bigger than many non-GPS sports watches.  I've been wearing as a watch a little too often, since my Timex Ironman died in the Bahamas, which is a blog entry for another day.  Still, since you never know when a 5K might break out, I don't see the harm in that.

The Forerunner 10 also picks up satellites much faster than 201 did, and seems to connect with them a little more often to give a slightly more precise measurement.  I've meant to wear both of them on a run to compare their measurements, but A) that's really dorky and B) I have enough trouble remember to bring one GPS. The Forerunner 10 connects easily to upload run data to, where run data and maps are displayed.

The Forerunner 10 isn't all pizza and beer, though. It does have a few disadvantages to the 201.  I prefer the 201's larger display, which lets me look at time, speed/pace, and distance all one screen to the 10s smaller screen that only displays two measurements at a time. In the photo above, time and distance are displayed are displayed on the 10 and time, speed, and distance on the 201.

That said, I chose the 10 for it's relatively low price point and the salesperson's advice that would provide features and functionality similar to the 201, which has been discontinued.  That is definitely true, even if the display is set up differently.  Since I only use speed, pace/distance, time, and occasionally the virtual training partner, the Forerunner 10 is certainly sufficient for me.

I've been warned that battery life on the Forerunner 10 is limited to about 4 hours.  I'm a long way from testing that, but if that proves to be the case I'll have to go back to the 201 for longer marathon training runs...but that's a long way off.

I should also mention that the band on my Forerunner 10 broke when the unit was less than two months old.  While that's a negative, I got excellent customer service from Garmin, which replaced the band very quickly at no cost.  Replacement bands are available when I need to replace it again, hopefully in a more normal timeframe.

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