My Garmin Debacle

So I was running the Simsbury River Race a few weeks ago and prior to the race I was sitting in Kim’s car with her discussing my race strategy.  She asked me what my current running pace was.  I pulled out my phone and starting to look at my stats and she told me, “Girl, you need to get a Garmin!  It’s time to get away from all that phone crap.”  (Well maybe not word for word, but that’s what she was trying to say).  So I decided to use the birthday money my mom gave me towards a Garmin watch.

As soon as the race was over, I came home and pulled up the Garmin site and and did some research.  There were two specific things that I had to consider when purchasing a watch, battery life and interval training.

Well, I should have done more research because the first watch I ordered, The Garmin Forerunner 210 could only do interval training in increments of 10 seconds.  It’s a nice watch, but I wasn’t really sure if it was going to suit my training needs.


So I ordered another Garmin, the Forerunner  310XT and when it arrive it was the size of a laptop on my arm!  I wasn’t too happy about the size of that watch, but it had a lot of features I was interested in like the lap pace and other data on the larger screen while doing the interval training.  So I figured worst case, I can wear it on my fitness belt and look at the data as I am running.


The other mistake I made was testing out the watch very little prior to my marathon. I had an epic fail on race morning because I charged the Garmin Forerunner 310, but didn’t put it in power save mode overnight.  So when Gail and I got to the lobby on race morning it was dead!  So we ran upstairs, she grabbed her watch, I grabbed my Forerunner 210 and we went back downstairs.  I used it during the race with the 20/20 intervals, but when we hit 99 reps of intervals it stopped and I didn’t know what to do!  I thought I lost all of my data.  Come to find out, the data is still in the watch, but I have no idea how to restart the intervals.  I did restart the timer but I assumed I was starting at mile 0 again and starting all new stats.  We used Gail’s watch at this point in the race, but I was trying to capture as much data as I could because I like to review the numbers after my races.

My most recent purchase is the Garmin Forerunner 220 and so far I love it so much that I wore it as my every day watch.



It is simple to use, the battery life is great and I like the screen and information it provides me during my run.  I like that I can select intervals for my own specific times for run and rest, and I came across a walk/run timer built into it today.  I am still learning the watch, but it is very easy to use and some time on YouTube will really teach me a lot about it.



The watch is very light weight and is comfortable on my arm.  When I first started running with a watch I hated the feeling on my arm.  It really irritated me.  Ironically, when I was running the Providence marathon with it on, it didn’t even bother me.  I charged it when I received it last week and used it twice for running, and as a watch for time and it hasn’t required a charge yet.

The Garmin 220 is a keeper for sure.  I already returned the other two watches and have no regrets.  The Garmin Forerunner 210 is a nice watch, but when comparing the 210 to the 220 I’m all about the 220.  Easy to read screen, cute colors and very light weight.


9 thoughts on “My Garmin Debacle

  1. Thanks for your review! My Garmin 405 just died on me and I’m consideringa new one. I’m actually just considering replacing the battery myself since Garmin will charge $80 plus shipping to fix the battery. If it doesn’t work out I will check out the 220.

  2. Haha! I’m sorry but I love that you bought three watches. There are so many on the market that it’s hard to figure out which one suits your needs. I have 3 heart rate monitors that I never use.
    I’ve got the 220 at the moment too and it’s my favourite Garmin so far. I’ve also got the 910x too because my mum got it for me as a gift (I can’t see myself ever doing a tri). But you’ll love the data you get on the Garmin Connect. I got a bit addicted to mine at the start and had to actively not look at my watch during a race. I set the pace alert for my last race which drove me nuts as it kept telling me I was going too slow.
    They are lots of fun, enjoy

  3. I’m considering asking for a new Garmin for my birthday and I’d really like the 220, I’ve heard a lot of good things about it. I have the 405 now and I know a lot people hated the touch bezel, but to be honest it’s never really bothered me, it’s easy to “lock” you don’t accidentally hit anything. And I’ve never understood how people wear those big wrist laptop ones, but to each their own, right!?

    • P.S. – I think I mentioned it previously, but the videos on the Garmin website are awesome, that’s how I learned to use everything on my watch (and they do SOOO much, it’s crazy!)

  4. Funny that you went through these two watches first. I had been using a 305 until it started to fail and so I upgraded to the 310 and had nothing but trouble with it. I even had it replaced under warranty and it still failed. My wife had the 210 and it used to freeze on her all the time that she ended up using her iphone more often than not. We both just used the Garmin trade in program and both now use the 220. It’s a great watch. I hope you are very happy with it. So far we are!!

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