I am looking at buying an Athletic watch and after some review, I am considering the Polar V800. I do Not want a Fitbit. But I have considered the Garmin ForeRunner 920XT. The main reason I am not particularly fond of the Garmin, is because of the constant software bugs. But I am curious about what everyone else is using or your thoughts.
So far this is what I found:
The Polar V800 is a GPS watch that tracks a wide variety of sports, from running and swimming to yoga, dance, cycling, and CrossFit. The watch also tracks daily activity, including steps taken, calories burned, and quality of sleep. The heart rate straps includes the H7- Bluetooth smart + Analog transformation for on land (outdoor or gym equipment like treadmills) and underwater usage.
What drew me to this watch:
I am a multi sport athlete. Although I am training for a half marathon, I believe cross training (especially low impact) helps in the success of your overall health and running. Besides running, I also indoor swim and bike weekly. I want a watch I can into my cycling class or in the pool that can tell me how what my heart rate is, how many calories I burned, and how far I went.
Downsides of the watch:
- Money, Money, Money! Yes, this watch is expensive and that just really sucks!
- For people with small wrists (that would be me) it isn’t very comfortable. One reviewer stated that when he worked out, he had to fasten the band tightly on his writs so that it wouldn’t slide around his arm.
- The charging clip takes some practice to get used to. And sometimes with an accidental nudge, it occasionally moved off the charger.
- One reviewer of the watch stated the difference between suburban and Urban areas in regards to the watches ability to connect with the GPS signal. He stated while the watched was able to acquire a satellite lock within seconds in a suburban area, in an urban environment around tall buildings (he was in Manhattan), the watch is a bit slow at picking up the GPS signal. I live in the Minneapolis area but I will be using the watch 99% of my time in the suburbs.
- The watches ability to measure your current/instantaneous pace with GPS signal alone is not very accurate at all. This was quoted as more a limitation of GPS technology than the watch itself. To mitigate this, the V800 is able to pair with the Polar Stride Sensor to give more accurate pace data.
- You are not able to set the watch to keep track of cadence. If you want to monitor cadence (footfall) to let you know how much work your legs are doing over a given distance, you have to buy the Stride Sensor with is an extra $65+. This device is also needed to measure pace/distance on a treadmill.
- Again, for cycling to measure cadence and speed sensor, you will need to buy a separate device to attach to your bike.
- While swimming, the watch isn’t always accurate at counting laps, especially when using open turns instead of doing flip turns.
- Some reviewers thought wearing the watch to bed felt too large and cumbersome.
- There is no wi-fi option when uploading data from your watch to your computer. The watch can wirelessly sync data from the watch to your mobile device with then updates your flow account with your most recent efforts.
- Before you initially use, this watch requires plenty of preparation via software rather than via the watch interface itself.
Upsides to this watch:
- The watch isn’t in your face with crazy color combinations. I feel like I could wear this watch throughout my everyday life without worrying about it being out of place. It also has an average weight of 82g, comparable to other athletic watches.
- The watch is made out of stainless steel and the face of the watch is made out of Gorilla Glass. These are premium materials, giving the watch a high-quality look.
- The battery is great: you can use the watch for 13 hours in normal GPS mode before needing charged. Or if you want the battery to last longer, switching it to Power-Save mode (the watch will update GPS data less frequently) and it will give you up to 50 hours before the battery needs charged. If you turn the watch to time mode with daily activity monitoring, you are able to use the watch for 30 days before needing to charge it.
- Waterproof up to 30m
- You can add custom activity pages to tact multiple sports areas, which is more complicated on the Forerunner 920XT and not an option on the Tomtom multi sport cardio.
- The Polar Flow app that accompanies the watch does a nice job of laying out your data in an easy-to-read format. If using the watch as a daily activity tracker, you will be able to see how you were throughout the day, being able to set goals and provides ways for you to reach your goals based on the data it has gathered.
- The Polar Flow also allows you to create a workout with sections- like sprints, rest, cadence goals- and then repeat them for an interval workout.
- The Polar Flow website seconds as a social network. On this network, you can chose to follow other athletes in your area, it provides recent workout summaries for Polar customers all over the world, and you can add comments to others workouts.
- Through the Polar Flow, you are able to download the Race Pace Target- this allows you to enter the distance and time you want it will automatically assist in keeping you at the correct pace.
- You can upload your workout to MyFitnessPal, Strava, and TrainingPeaks.
- The heart-rate sensor strap can be used to train in certain zones for specific desired results. For example, if you want to burn fat you can set the watch to assist keeping you in that zone: a chirp and vibration will alert you when you’ve slipped outside the desired zone, allowing you to work harder to step off the gas to stay within your workout zone.
- The watch measures your recovery status after a workout.
- Easy to use- hit the red button, pick a sport, wait for the GPS to lock on and Heart rate strap to sync, ten one more press and you are off.
- While swimming, the watch measures time, heart rate, distance and analyze strokes in the the pool using the SWOLF score.
There are mixed reviews. Some say its a good watch for runners and triathlons but thats it. While others say it is THE best watch on the market, engineered to not only tracks your workouts but takes your fitness training to a whole new level.
What are your thoughts on this watch or any fitness watch you have used?