Threads

See more results

Topics

Usernames

Mumsnet Logo
Please
or
to access all these features

Do I NEED a running watch?
47

xsquared · 18/08/2021 19:33

I've recently installed Strava on my new phone and I have to say, it's very chucky to have while running.

Now, I have heard of fitness watches that measure steps, distance, heartbeat etc, but I have no idea how they work.

Initially I thought it was so you wouldn't need to have your phone with you when you exercise, but apparently that's not quite true.

Having restarted running again, I enjoy tracking my progress on Strava. Can anyone tell me what the benefits of a running watch is of I get the same information from running Strava on my phone, please?

Thank you.

OP's posts:
Please
or
to access all these features

User3579 · 18/08/2021 19:37

Garmin Vivoactive 4s is better than a phone and you can see your pace and hr during your run. Uploads to Strava and looks nice for a sports watch. I love mine but I’m super competitive and wanted every segment in my area so found it really addictive, in a good way. It was encouraging for me and I have got much much fitter in the year I’ve had it. I still carry my phone but in an armband and so I can do live track

Please
or
to access all these features

xsquared · 18/08/2021 19:41

Thanks @User3579 that's helpful to know. Keeping an eye on the segments and pace might motivate me to go faster! Is there a watch where you can just leave your phone at home?

OP's posts:
Please
or
to access all these features

SchoolNightWine · 18/08/2021 19:43

You need a smart watch with built in GPS so that it will track your run and you can leave your phone behind. It then uploads to Strava once you're home and linked to your phone again.
I use a Fitbit Versa 3 as it's waterproof and has GPS - and they seem to have finally sorted the screen with this one so it doesn't scratch so easily!

Please
or
to access all these features

ReviewingTheSituation · 18/08/2021 19:44

2 things...

1 - if you run alone, please take your phone with you. If you fall/get lost/need help, you will need it. Also, if you're running off road/long distances/after dark, you can share your live location with someone so someone knows where you are

2 - for me, a running watch is way better than a phone - to be able to see your distance/speed/time at a glance is invaluable. You can get basic ones that do just that, but if you think you're going to get into running more seriously, then it's worth having one with more features - these of course come with a hefty price tag quite often. I use one with a HR monitor, and use it to train at specific HR sometimes, but it also does lots of things I don't want/need (mainly the 'smart' features - I really don't want to see texts/calls whilst running!). Something like a Garmin Forerunner 35 is a good entry level watch. From there upwards, it all depends what you want.

I've only ever used Garmins - I'm on my 4th - and most runners I run with also use them. They are very good. I wouldn't bother with one that works on step count - make sure you get one with GPS - it's way more accurate (at the end of the data, if you're getting one to be able to look at the data afterwards, you want accurate data!).

Please
or
to access all these features

User3579 · 18/08/2021 19:45

You can leave any Garmin at home you just won’t get the live track which lets my DH know where I am on my run. It’s a good safety feature I think

Please
or
to access all these features

User3579 · 18/08/2021 19:45

Should change my username to KOM Hunter!

Please
or
to access all these features

fellrunner85 · 18/08/2021 19:47

I never take my phone running with me. It's too bulky and annoying.

As pps have said, Garmins are the best. Mine tracks my heart rate as well as speed, cadence, etc. Then it just uploads to Strava via Bluetooth once I'm home.

I have a Forerunner 245 now but even the more basic ones are a huge step up from using your phone.

Please
or
to access all these features

TomAllenWife · 18/08/2021 19:49

I just have a band round my arm that holds my phone and a key
It was about £4 from eBay

That way I use strava, have my music and safer to have my phone with me

Please
or
to access all these features

ReviewingTheSituation · 18/08/2021 19:53

Those of you running without your phones, are you running alone? Whilst it can be a PITA having a phone, what if you fall over/need help/get lost?

I guess I'll get responses like 'I've been running for x years and never fallen over...' - I've been running for 10 years and only fallen twice, but on one of those occasions I'd have been scuppered without my phone.
And having the peace of mind of someone knowing where you are if you're heading out for a couple of hours into the countryside on your own...

Running shorts/leggings usually have a phone pocket, or you can use a flipbelt (much more comfortable than an armband).

Please
or
to access all these features

fellrunner85 · 18/08/2021 19:58

Yes I run alone, and long distances, without my phone.

I only take it if I'm going somewhere very remote (Lakeland fells, for example) on my own.

I've never had a pair of running shorts with a phone pocket, and I don't like Flipbelts, but my phone does fit in my Salomon vest pack if I need it.

Ok so there is a small risk attached, but I think we have to remember that people were running for years and years before mobile phones were invented. I'm a good navigator, I tell my DH where I'm going, and as I say - if I'm going somewhere very remote where I could get into trouble and not see another soul, I take my phone with me. 99 times out of 100 it's not necessary.

Please
or
to access all these features

SomethingToldTheWildGeese · 18/08/2021 20:01

I've found Strava on my phone to be wildly inaccurate.

I have a Garmin Fenix 3 watch (I think.. )

  • it's amazing. I bought it 2nd hand from ebay for £95. Not only is it comfy/ looks cool / super accurate blaa blaa, butt (most importantly!) ... I've also found loadss of new trail runs and footpaths by downloading GPX / FIT files onto it! (it literally guides me along new routes, showing me where to go at every turn).
Please
or
to access all these features

purplesequins · 18/08/2021 20:03

I have a smart watch - same brand/connected to my phone.
i like it, not as bulky as taking my phone.
I had to get new headphones those as watch can only do wireless.
it can do strava as well, but has it's own exercise app that works just as well apart from cycling that it just doesn't register for some reason

Please
or
to access all these features

NerrSnerr · 18/08/2021 20:17

Those of you running without your phones, are you running alone? Whilst it can be a PITA having a phone, what if you fall over/need help/get lost?

I don't run anywhere remote. Just around the village/ surrounding villages on familiar routes and during the day. There are enough people/ houses/ cars around if needed.

Please
or
to access all these features

xsquared · 18/08/2021 20:19

Ooh, thanks for your responses. I mostly run familiar routes during the day, and although I've fallen over before, I'll still managed to get home safely. Not keen on running in the dark though.

I'll have a look at the Garmin collection as it seems to be popular. Thanks for suggestions.

OP's posts:
Please
or
to access all these features

DuesToTheDirt · 18/08/2021 20:21

I run alone, never take a phone. I live in a city and am never that far from other people, so if I had an accident I could just yell for help.

Please
or
to access all these features

UnaOfStormhold · 18/08/2021 20:24

I find shorts and leggings with a decent sized phone pocket work best for me, hardly notice it's there but I like it for emergencies, maps and podcasts. I also have a Garmin forerunner 45s for the better quality GPS tracking and the convenience of having the data on my wrist. I'm doing a lot of low heart rate training at the moment so it's handy to have the heartrate. I also like being able to set a pace target and getting alerts if I stray out of it.

Please
or
to access all these features

DecayedStrumpet · 18/08/2021 20:36

I have a forerunner 645 music, specifically so i could leave my phone at home.
It Bluetooths to my headphones and plays Spotify playlists and podcasts (which you have to download over WiFi before you set out) if you have a Premium subscription. You can also download music direct from your pc... i wish it did Audible but sadly not.

The Garmin Connect app does basically the same as strava and you can sync with strava so your mates can tell you how awesome you are Wink but with added heartrate so you can tell how hard you're working.

I find it quite useful, i can glance down at my wrist, see my heart rate is 155 and know I'll get a stitch in a few minutes if I don't slow down Grin
Or that I'm running considerably slower/faster than i thought - hard to tell at a glance on your phone

I'm in the home counties and don't think I've ever run for 5 mins without seeing another person, even in the countryside.

Please
or
to access all these features

trilbydoll · 18/08/2021 20:39

I've got a Garmin and only wear shorts with a pocket in the back for my phone - not in its case, just the phone itself. Then the Garmin live track means DH knows where I am and I can listen to Spotify Grin

I find the GPS on the Garmin a lot more accurate than my phone ever was.

Please
or
to access all these features

Therehavetobeadjustments · 18/08/2021 20:47

I run remotely and wouldn't dream of not taking a phone. If you twist your ankle 20 miles from home far from anyone's house that's going to be problematic.

I have a Garmin Fenix 6S which is a dream watch, upload maps etc onto it and can run all day.

Started with a Garmin Forerunner which was great until I wanted to explore more.

Please
or
to access all these features

delilahbucket · 18/08/2021 20:58

I don't have a watch, I just take my phone. I have a belt which is very comfy, or some of my clothes have pockets big enough. I like to take tissues, hayfever eye drops and lip sunscreen at this time of year so I would have my belt anyway.

Please
or
to access all these features

fellrunner85 · 18/08/2021 21:14

I run remotely and wouldn't dream of not taking a phone. If you twist your ankle 20 miles from home far from anyone's house that's going to be problematic

Well yes of course. But most of us aren't regularly running 40 mile ultras (which would make us 20 miles from home) in the wilderness. Those who are doing that sort of thing clearly need to take a phone. Just as I do of I'm going off the beaten track.

That said, I mainly run in the Dales and the Peak District, and tbh the trails on my weekend long runs are busier than bloody Manchester Piccadilly railway station Grin

Please
or
to access all these features

Chocolateteabag · 18/08/2021 22:14

My Garmin (Venu) has an emergency call button - it sends texts to DH and DSIS (if I'm able to press it) and would give my location (and DH always knows I'm going out)

Obviously if I fall and bang my head I'm not going to be able to press it or use my phone

I have heard there are watches with a "fall alert" - not sure if that's a real thing yet

I run on trails from home and also have a whistle (throw back from orienteering days) - again if I was able to I could blast away on that to attract attention

My phone is very often out of range for a signal where I run!

Please
or
to access all these features

Iggly · 18/08/2021 22:17

I always take my phone. I do longer runs anyway where I’d carry water in a belt, so can squeeze a phone in. I don’t even notice as either my leggings have a side pocket or I’ll use my belt.

In terms of a watch - I have a garmin. I loved it at first but I’m falling out of love with it because it makes me think of running when running 😂 so I can’t get into the zone as I’m always checking pace etc.

I find it useful for step counting etc though.

Please
or
to access all these features

MuckyPlucky · 18/08/2021 22:30

Also a fell-runner here (waves at @fellrunner85 Smile ) and run regularly in Peak District across crags, moors, etc.
Never take my phone.
Use a Garmin Forerunner 735XT (triathlon watch).

Never had a problem and there’s always climbers / fell-runners etc around. We all look out for eachother.

Only time I’ve v occasionally taken a phone is things like remote summits in Wales etc, when I’ve stored it in my Salomon race vest just in case. I’d never wear it in my running tights or train shorts as it’s far too big & bulky to be able to run freely without it jumping around & being bulky & irritating .

Please
or
to access all these features

randomsabreuse · 18/08/2021 22:30

I have a Garmin 245 and love it. I like having the notifications on my phone because I can run when DH is on call and not have to stop every time my phone beeps at me... I either have my phone in my leggings pocket or a belt or a mini back pack.

It's handy having my pace instantly visible,
plus checking distance/time if I'm on a deadline, sneaking runs during kids' activities...

Please
or
to access all these features
Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.