Discover the Top 5 Best GPS Watches for Runners in this Roundup Review


Top 5 Best GPS Watches for Runners

Welcome to the comparison review of the top 5 best GPS watches for runners. The main benefit of the reviews below are to give you honest feedback on the top five most popular running watches. These comparison reviews address pros and cons of each running watch and a summary of the features.

Below, you'll find these running watches sections with easy to follow details about each one.

Garmin Forerunner 210

The Garmin Forerunner 210 lets you make the choice of training indoors or outdoors. This GPS sports watch keeps track of all of the prime metrics you need to be aware of, and it is one of the easiest sports watches to use that you will find. It is ready to go as soon as you take it out of the box and charge it.

It is the choice for the serious runner, with interval sessions that can be customized, yet it is also ideal for the weekend warrior runner just looking to take off a few pounds. It may be used with or without a heart rate monitor, and it even works with some indoor fitness equipment.

Garmin Forerunner 210 GPS

The Garmin Forerunner 210 makes it simple to store, research, and share your workouts with friends, and the hyper-accurate GPS function locks onto the satellite quickly, and stays locked on even when near very tall buildings or under a canopy of tall trees.

The Good Stuff:

  • This sports watch has a compact size, so it can be used as an everyday watch, and it's size make it ideal for women.
  • Easy to use interface with one button operation. When you are ready to start your workout, all you have to do is press one button. When finished, all you have to do is press the stop button
  • It has a power save mode that conserves the battery, and unlike many other GPS sports watches, the GPS connection is fast, and it stays connected even in places like close to towering buildings and tall tree canopies.
  • It covers all of the prime metrics such as pace, distance, calories burned, duration of workout and it even does intervals tracking for the more serious runner.
  • Works Indoors & Outdoors - When used outdoors, this sports watch locks onto satellites quickly for GPS functions. Indoors can track and store data from a treadmill or a cycling machine. 
  • Connects seamlessly to Garmin Connect so you can plan or share your runs.

The Bad Stuff:

  • With only 8 hours of battery life, this is not a sports watch for a long-distance runners. It takes about one to two hours to recharge the battery.
  • The menus have been criticized as being non-intuitive, and it does not have a vibration alert mode, so if you wear headphones during your workout, you could miss out on an alert.

Garmin Forerunner 220

The Garmin Forerunner 220 is a GPS performance watch for people who take their running and training seriously. It has advanced features that both professional athletes and weekend warriors are sure to love. It has a number of built-in features that help the user to keep track of their performance over time, and it can even provide motivation and feedback to help you reach your training goals. Other features monitor your vital signs to ensure your stay healthy while reaching out for new fitness goals

If you are serious about getting in shape, the Garmin Forerunner 220 is like having your own personal coach with you at all times when you work out. It will inform you when you set a personal record, and while you work out, the Garmin Forerunner 220 keeps an accurate account of pace, distance, and your heart rate. With the built-in accelerometer, there is no need for a foot pad, as you will get accurate pace and distance data no matter if you are on a track outdoors, or on a treadmill indoors.

Garmin Forerunner 220 GPS

Individual alerts can be set for heart rate, pace, and running and walking intervals so you can stay within the training range that you desire. Audible alerts, as well as vibration alerts will keep you informed of these parameters. When your workout is finished, you can have the run saved in the watch's history, and it will even give you a summary with statistics on your run so you can see just how well you did. Any personal records you set will be noted, be it for a 1-mile run, a 5k jog, or even a marathon.

The Good Stuff:

  • A very lightweight, comfortable watch that has everything an everyday watch offers
  • It has a live tracking feature so your spouse can see where you are at all times
  • Simple and clean interface makes it easy to one switch from one feature to another. 
  • Serves as a virtual coach- you can set alerts for a specific pace, heart rate, or intervals so you can stay within a training range. You receive alerts to keep you informed if you go out of the training range.
  • Similar to the Garmin Forerunner 210, it connects with GPS signal indoors and outdoors quickly after first use. 
  • Just like the Garmin 210, it  connects to Garmin Connect even without being connected to a computer. 

The Bad Stuff:

  • The GPS will initially take some time to establish contact with a satellite, but after that, it works well.
  • Not a ton of color combinations to choose from. 
  • Just like the Garmin Forerunner 210, only 8 hours of battery life and it takes about one to two hours to recharge the battery.

Garmin Forerunner 310XT

The Garmin Forerunner 310XT is waterproof to a depth of up to 50 meters, so it can be worn for a refreshing swim in the pool or the lake. Made for the serious athlete, as well as the beginner who would like to get in better shape, this GPS watch features a longer battery life so you can get more out of a workout. It is ideal for running, or training on a bike, and has a limited one-year warranty. It has a number of very useful features that will help the user get in the best shape of their life. 

One of the coolest benefits of using this GPS sports watch you can plan a route right on the watch itself, and then watch your progress as you run or bike your route. When you are done with a workout, you can easily upload the results to Garmin Connect, and share it on social media with your friends and workout partners.

Garmin Forerunner 310XT

 The Garmin Forerunner 310XT can also be paired with an optional heart rate monitor that is wireless. With this extra accessory, heart beats per minute can be tracked and this data can also be used to computer advanced calorie consumption, ideal for those looking to drop a few extra pounds.

The Good Stuff:

  • This GPS sports watch does a much a better job of quickly locking onto a satellite feed than other similar models on the market today. It has vibrate and audible alerts when you have reached your target in pace and other metrics. It can chart speed, altitude, and heart rate. It can even chart laps if you wish.
  • This model has one of the most accurate GPS systems to be found anywhere.
  • While this is a rather large watch, it is relatively lightweight and very comfortable, so it can be worn every day. It does a good job of staying in place, and the large display makes it easy to read.
  • This has the best battery life of all of the Garmin Running Watches as it has 20 hours of battery life and it takes about one and half to two hours to charge. 
  • Simple and clean interface makes it easy to one switch from feature to another.
  • Connects to Garmin Connect even without being connected to a computer.

The Bad Stuff:

  • If you are a person who sweats a great deal, the screen can become foggy.
  • Big screen which can be cumbersome to some people

Garmin Forerunner 610

The Garmin Forerunner 610 ups the ante on modern GPS sports watches, with this model that has touchscreen technology. It gives you a variety of ways to keep in touch with your training information at all times.

This GPS sports watch tracks all of the key metrics accurately, and one tap of the touchscreen gives you more information. It is rugged and functional, and it is designed to stand up to rain, sweat, and the occasional splash of water.

Ideal for the serious runner, and those looking to lose a few extra pounds with a weekend workout, the Garmin Forerunner 610 helps you to explore new routes, while helping you get back to your starting point with state-of-the-art GPS technology.

Garmin Forerunner 610

The Training Effect mode of this sports watch is unique. It helps you to train smarter, without working you too hard. It takes a close measure of the activity you are doing on your aerobic fitness. With the Garmin Forerunner 610 as your workout partner, you can easily store, analyze, and share your workout data with friends through Garmin Connect, and get the encouragement you need to reach your goals.

The Good Stuff:

  • This is also a lightweight and comfortable watch that can be worn daily.
  • The touchscreen feature works very well, and the interface is designed smartly. One of the very best features is four optional data fields on one screen, so you can monitor multiple metrics simultaneously
  • Vibrate and audio alerts are there for you to use.
  • When switched on, it locates the satellite quickly and accurately, and stays in contact no matter where you are.
  • Connects to Garmin Connect even without being connected to a computer.

The Bad Stuff:

  • Similar to other Garmin Forerunners , only 8 hours of battery life and it takes about one to two hours to recharge the battery.
  • This unit has had some charging issues in the past but it seems Garmin has has worked through it.

Nike Sportwatch

Available in a variety of eye-pleasing colors, this Nike+ SportsWatch GPS is made for those who want to stay motivated to reach their fitness goals, and do it in classy style. It keeps track of all of the important metrics crucial to success, and looks good enough for the weekend warrior to use daily as a conventional watch.

Armed with the TomTom GPS technology, this sports watch can document every step you take, and allow you to map out your route in advance.

While you are running, it will keep close tabs on your pace, calories burned, where you are in your planned run, number of laps, and distance​.

Nike Sportwatch GPS

The Nike+ SportsWatch GPS keeps track of all of your personal records, and it acts as your very own virtual coach, complete with tips and rewards when you reach your goals. Once you have finished your run, you can share your accomplishments with friends with, and they can see what you have done through Facebook and Twitter​

The Good Stuff:

  • The Nike+ SportsWatch GPS stores up to 15 hours of runs, so you can see how you are progressing
  • Some of the unique features of this watch include an average walk/run timer, better mapping capabilities, integration with Facebook.
  • It's comfortable and it is stylish enough that women love it, yet has enough of a coolness factor that men love it as well.
  • Connects to Nike Running via usb built into the watch to upload your runs.
  • Nike has really great customer service especially on Twitter, so if the watch has a tracking malfunction, they can can adjust your run with a simple tweet. 

The Bad Stuff:

  • The battery lasts 8 hours at best but 7 hours is more realistic. Charging only takes an hour or so. 
  • Connectivity to the GPS has really been a down fall of this running watch. It takes up to 10 minutes to connect. Many runners start the connectivity process before the put on their shoes.

And The Winner Is..?

These running watches are the ones that most runners use, the one that stands out as the best among the runners polled and has the best overall review is the Garmin Forerunner 310XT

From overall functions that running watches offer; battery life and easy to use functions and comfort level, the Garmin Forerunner 310XT has the best marks. In addition the larger screen adds an additional benefit for runners who look down for a quick glance while running.

Garmin Forerunner 310XT


 Best GPS Watches for Runners - the verdict is in Garmin makes the best product

Why wait? Get the Garmin Forerunner 310XT now!