Saturday, February 6, 2010

Garmin 310XT Review

Holy crap where the heck have I been? I can't believe that my last post was all the way back in December!
So what's new you say? Well, besides a new hunky partner in crime (wink, wink, nudge, nudge) to run, hike, and adventure with, I have just been trying to focus on getting over this case of bronchitis (YET AGAIN!) that is trying to claim my lungs.
The weather has picked up with 40+ degree weather so I have managed to battle this bronchitis with some really great trail runs with the dog. The pup keeps licking his food bowl and staring at me confused like, "why the hell am I hungry again"? Running, my little man, welcome to the life of trail running.

All I have to say about 2010 is LIFE COULDN'T BE BETTER!

I ended up returning my Garmin 405HRM after frustration after frustration. The touch bezel refused to work with any amount of moisture on your fingertips and, as we all know, I am a sweaty girl. The gps satellites would flicker on and off throughout my runs and the ant+agent had issues downloading my runs. Some runs would just suddenly disappear off my log and others wouldn't even download. I ran my first trail marathon last year (a great notch marked in my life of running) and the stupid thing lost my data!!! What a bummer. So off it went back to REI.
In place, I purchased the Garmin Forerunner 310XT

Touted for its waterproofness for triathlons, ease of simple pushbuttons to switch between sports, a new and improved HR chest strap, and super fast satellite locating I was eager to test this bad boy out. Although I haven't yet tried it on the bike (I have a cadence gadget from my 405) or the water, I have tried it running on the trail and with my foot pod on the treadmill. So far, I am impressed. Locating satellites is indeed super fast and accurate. Downloading it to Garmin connect via ant+ agent works like a charm and it even has a little map on the watch. The buttons are super user friendly and much easier to navigate than the 405's touch bezel.

Gripes: there are really only two.
#1. the watch is quite large on my female wrist. It isn't really that burdensome at all but it took a little getting used to after wearing the 405.
#2. My biggest complaint- You can't tell time on it. No "clock" function. This would be nice because often I am off on a trail run in the middle of nowhere and, unless I remember to look at the car clock before I head off on my run then add the time I've been running (as long as I don't have it on auto-pause function), I have no idea what time it is. Obviously I'm not going to wear a watch AND Garmin on my wrist....

***Update: There IS a watch function, it just took me awhile to locate it. So ignore gripe #2 and increase my satisfaction tenfold. As I am writing this, it is 02/2011 and I am STILL highly satisfied with the Garmin 310XT***

I'm excited to test it's battery life especially with my 50miler and the TransAlpine runs this year. I need a workhorse of a watch and I'm hoping the 310XT will deliver!

That is my preliminary report as I see I have a lot more testing to do including the bike rides and swims. So far, so good. I definitely like it more than the 405. The touch bezel function was a great idea but one that didn't really pan out to it's hype.

Oh, and for something totally irrelevant- I just found a new addiction that I think will have to smuggle at the bottom of my pack for my upcoming long runs:

Mo's Dark Bacon Bar- Applewood smoked bacon in 62% cacao bar. OMG it is unbelievable! Check it out. Seriously.