Garmin Forerunner 225 review: A great running watch with accurate heart-rate tracking

Garmin’s first watch with a wrist-based heart rate monitor also has all the features a runner needs. The Garmin Forerunner 225 has been replaced by the Forerunner 235.

There is an influx of specialized fitness equipment including GPS and heart rate sensors. People might think of Microsoft Band and Fitbit Surge.So far, Garmin hasn’t ventured into the wrist-worn heart rate space—the company’s previous watches required a separate chest strap to track heart rate. The $300 (£240, AU$389) Garmin Forerunner 225 changes that completely. This watch is Garmin’s first to feature a wrist-based heart rate sensor, but that’s not all.This is a running watch. It has built-in GPS for pace and distance tracking, as well as all-day activity tracking. I had been hesitant to adopt these wrist-based heart rate sensors, thinking they lacked accuracy, but the Forerunner 225 helped change my mind.

It’s also one of my favorite running watches from a design perspective, second only to Garmin’s ultra-thin Vivoactive smartwatch.The Forerunner 225 adds a lot of new features to a great running watch. This is a running watch I would personally buy. Perfect? ​​No, but this best meets my needs.what it can doThe Forerunner 225 is an all-day activity tracker, running watch with GPS, and heart rate monitor, all in one device. GPS is used to accurately measure pace and distance while running outdoors. With the optical heart rate sensor on the back of the watch, you can track your minute-by-minute heart rate during exercise and when you want to start measuring during the day.

The advantage of optical wrist-based heart rate monitoring is that you can skip wearing a chest strap monitor. The downside in many cases is that wrist-based monitoring ends up being less accurate. The optical heart rate measurement on this Garmin is much better than most.This Garmin watch also features an accelerometer for tracking activity throughout the day. It measures steps, distance walked and calories burned. It can also automatically measure your night’s sleep, but it doesn’t provide details about your sleep cycles or how long it takes you to fall asleepThe accelerometer can also handle indoor distance tracking when GPS is unavailable.

It works, but is not as accurate as using GPS. When compared to treadmill distance measurements, I found that indoor running distance varied by about 0.05 to 0.10 miles.The Forerunner 225 also features an inactivity alarm to remind you to get up and move around after a long period of inactivity, as well as a vibrating alarm. The Forerunner is also a great everyday watch. The only thing it’s missing are smartphone notifications, like those on the Fitbit Surge or Apple Watch.designIn the past, I have felt that most GPS running watches were not comfortable enough to be worn all day long. They are often an eyesore. Even though the Forerunner 225 is big and bulky, it’s still beautiful from a certain angle – at least on a man’s wrist, since the watch is 48mm in diameter. By comparison, the largest Apple Watch model is just 42mm.

It’s about the same size and thickness as a Casio G-Shock. It’s also only available in a single color: black with red accents.Heart rate monitor: consistently accurate during exerciseGarmin has partnered with Mio to provide an optical heart rate sensor for the Forerunner 225. It uses similar technology to that found in the Fitbit Surge and Apple Watch. A flashing green LED light is used to illuminate the capillaries, allowing a sensor on the back of the watch to measure the blood flowing through it.A little over 20 minutes using the Forerunner 225 and Polar H7 Bluetooth Chest Strap. I then compared the data recorded on both devices. Using the chest strap as a benchmark for acceptance, I found the Forerunner 225 to be incredibly accurate.Garmin Forerunner 225 watch batterylifeGarmin says the Forerunner 225 can last up to 10 hours with a GPS signal and the optical heart rate sensor turned on. Garmin claims the watch will last up to four weeks if you only use it as an activity tracker.I saw Garmin Forerunner 225 watch battery life of about a week and a half, which included five runs between 30 and 40 minutes. Your battery life will vary depending on how often you use your GPS.225 Using a proprietary dock to charge and sync data with a computer has become the norm in the wearable industry.Android and iOS supportThe Forerunner 225 includes Bluetooth for syncing data with Android and iOS devices, but it doesn’t do this automatically. To saveGarmin Forerunne Smart Watch Battery life, the phone and watch do not maintain a constant Bluetooth connection. This means that when you want to sync data, you have to press the red button on the watch and wait for it to connect. The sync process isn’t necessarily slow, but I miss the convenience of automatic uploads in the Garmin Vivoactive.

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