After my watch broke on a 7 mile run a couple of weeks ago, I pruchased a Garmin Forerunner 305. It’s a little toy I’ve wanted to get for some time and I finally had a good excuse. I tried it out for the first time on my 3 mile run last Saturday. I’m pretty impressed with its performance.
The 305 comes with an elastic heart rate sensor that wraps around the torso. This sensor wirelessly broadcasts heart rate to the wrist mounted Forerunner which records and displays the heart rate along with pace, distance, time, etc. Once outside, I was able to pick up satellite signals within a minute. I even picked up the satellite signals in the house once, but it’s unreliable indoors. I’ve yet to lose the signal outside, though.
On one section of the Pinellas trail, the distances are marked every 1/4 mile. Along this section, the Garmin performed flawlessly. The 1/4 miles on the Garmin ticked over right as I was crossing the marks on the trail. The only thing that the Garmin didn’t seem to measure well was elevation. I run on a pretty flat course in an area where the highest point above sea level is 45 feet. I ran up and down a single pedestrian bridge and the Garmin claimed I had ascended 350 feet and descended 327 feet, presumably ending my run 23 feet above where I began…even though I was on an out and back course.
When I got home, I was able to view my results by connecting the 305 to my computer via a USB cable. The 305 comes with some software that allows you to view your results on graphs and your run on a map. The map is surprisingly undetailed, so unless you run more than 10 miles at a time or run along a major road, it’s pretty useless. Overall, the software is pretty basic, but the graphs allow a quick glance at each workout. A nice feature is that you can export your data into a file that can be uploaded to various websites that provide more detailed analysis.
Okay, enough about my new toy. Today’s workout was a cycling workout:
10 minutes cycling warmup
35 minutes cycling on level 7
5 minutes cool down
10 minutes warmup
35 cycling at level 7
5 minutes cool down
Location: Stationary bike
Total distance: 16 miles.
I felt like I was doing better than my last cycling session, but it turns out that I did about the same. Maybe there were more hills this time. As I did last week, I had to sprint out the last 2 minutes to hit 13 miles in 35 minutes. I completed the workout with some toe raises and a 60 second plank.