When it comes to running and pacing, I've always been "anti-Garmin". There were three main reasons why I never had any interest in this device:
1. It was way too huge for my wrist
2. I enjoy the challenge of pacing myself with mile markers, and I get a great deal of satisfaction out of being able to pace a perfect marathon.
3. I become numbers-obsessed very easily and I could envision the Garmin controlling my run. I could see myself becoming a slave to my Garmin and if it didn't work one day for some reason, getting all bent out of shape about it.
Recently, I have been looking into heart rate monitors. I use the sensors on the treadmill to view my heart rate, but I am positive that my heart rate is lower outside, where I am not as affected by the heat and humidity of the gym. I also wanted to collect heart rate data for long runs and speedwork to see where everything fell.
Someone suggested to me that I get the Garmin with the Heart Rate monitor, but I immediately refused. In fact, many fellow runners have been trying to convince me to "Go Garmin". Finally, they won this battle and I lost. I broke down and bought a Garmin.
I know that they are a lot smaller now than they used to be. So I was optimistic that this 405 might fit my wrist (even though most watches don't even fit my wrist). And the Garmin would allow me the freedom to run wherever I wanted and automatically know my distance. I wouldn't be restricted to the trail (that has mile markers). I am running the Toronto marathon in September, which is measured in kilometers, and my watch can only take up to 30 splits, which isn't enough for 42K. So I needed a watch upgrade anyway. I also wanted to be able to track my splits and take heart rate data at the same time, and I think that most HR monitors don't have a "split" button.
The Garmin came today, and I am specifically blogging about it before even reading the directions or running with it. These are my pre-Garmin thoughts and concerns and I wanted to document them before I actually went out and used the thing.
I did, however, try it on for size. It's absolutely massive on my tiny wrists:
The non-flexible part of it is longer than the width of my wrist!
This is as tight as it gets.
It's so bulky and heavy on me-- I can't imagine ever racing in it. Or even doing speedwork with it. But I am going to give this thing a chance, since it comes so highly recommended. But no matter what, I still think that I will race with my watch. . . . with the exception of the Toronto Marathon.
The heart rate monitor strap also doesn't fit. Even on its tightest setting, it is too big and slides down. I had expected this, though, after trying on other HR monitor straps. I will try to safety pin it and if that doesn't work, the Garmin web site sells a smaller version of the strap.