Wednesday, July 13, 2011

My Forerunner And Me

I've been like a kid just given a new toy since this afternoon. I couldn't wait to get home today cos I got myself a new Garmin Forerunner 610 and was eager to mess around with it. Though I'm going to be eating the grass off my backyard for the rest of the month, I'm totally delighted with my new toy :D


I've been running with a Nike+ Sports band for quite a while and though it served me pretty well, it can dish out some atrocious distance readings when a race route has some serious hills in them. I was actually waiting for the Nike+ GPS sports watch to reach our shores but they're taking a heck of a long time and after some inquiries with Nike Malaysia and finding out that it's tentatively going to be released here somewhere in October, I decided that I can't wait any longer.

I went out and did some research and came across the Forerunner 210 and the 610. I did some serious research for both the models and was set to buy the 210 cos that came complete with the foot pod but wifey thought otherwise and told me why not get the 610 since it was way newer.

But it doesn't have a foot pod, I said and it's a 100 ringgit more expensive. What do you even need a foot pod, was her reply. Urmmm, what if I run in a tunnel and loose GPS connection, I said. Hey idiot, how many times are you going to run in a tunnel, was her reply. And she does have a point :D

So, it was the Forerunner 610 that comes complete with the heart rate monitor that won out. Even then, the bloody entire country was out of stock. A check with Frank Chong and he gave me the Garmin official distributors contact and after making a call to them only to confirm that they really don't have stock and would take two weeks for it to arrive. With no choice, I made a pre-order with them and was pleasantly surprised to receive an email from them today that the stock has arrived, a whole week earlier ... woohoo!

So, after an early morning appointment, I was off to collect my Forerunner 610 and came home a heck of a lot poorer, hence the grass eating for the rest of the month ... LOL!

Well, this is my first Garmin so I don't know much about it except that it was pretty awesome. Almost my entire 10K run today I kept looking at it and messing around with the touch screen every half kilometer or so that I'm surprised I didn't fall into some manhole or get run over by a car ... hahaha ... I'm still tweaking it to make it more attuned to my preference and it should stop being a novelty for me in a week or so.

In the short span of time I used it, it worked pretty well. The unit picked up the satellite on its first try in about 20 seconds (the people at Garmin said that it would take 5 minutes for the first time) so I was good to run almost immediately. I did have some issues about setting up the wireless data transfer which almost had me pulling out what little hair I had left. After some cussing and swearing, I finally got it to 'talk' to each other.

Then I had more problems getting it to upload my run data onto Garmin Connect. Apparently my Firefox is too high a version and it didn't want to install the plugin. A change of browser to Chrome fixed that but I'm a Firefox user so having to use Chrome to upload the data can be pretty annoying but what to do, until they have an upgrade or something, it'll just have to be Chrome when it comes to Garmin.

With all that said and done, I'm pretty happy with it, though it took some getting use to running with the heart rate monitor strapped around my chest. I just might ditch that if it becomes a bother. I'll come back with a little better review of the unit once I put it through its paces a little more. Ok, now let me go back to admiring my new toy ... LOL!

14 comments:

  1. Congrats on your new toy. Though LOL on your wifey comment about you running in tunnels. She is wise. ;)

    Now that you have that new toy, how's about donating your Nike Sportband to me? XD

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  2. Congrats on your new toy! Yay, I so love this post hehehe. Excited. Oh, for firefox, need to update the plugin. Coz just so that I've updated my firefox and the garmin plugin went not working on me and got me pissed that one time. LOL!

    But still I love how it shows u splits and stuff. I though, seldom run with a heart rate monitor since I don't have good posture it gets on my nerves when I run lol. I'm trying to get used to having the heart rate monitor though coz I'm starting to do some Tempo Runs. Need to calibrate it. LOL I can't relax to get a proper reading of my heart rate.

    On another note, everyone should have one of these neat gadgets. ;D

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  3. Nothing beats a neat gear that will push you to go further..I am using Forerunner 405 (courtesy of a kind friend who doesn't need it anymore, bless him) and had also experienced the initial "hair-pulling" moments too..LOL! However I am happy to say, Mr. G and I are now happily acquainted. This one is for the keeps man. Enjoy your run!

    p/s: How's the grass? :b

    Santacruz.

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  4. woooo... the latest model.
    For RM100 extra, me too will opts for the new model and HRM instead of foot pod. Food pod will be useful only in indoor environment like gym.

    Enjoy!

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  5. My Garmin 110, runs out of battery pretty fast. How's the 610's battery? Mine takes a few minutes to locate the Satelite, and sometimes fail to locate it. Seems 610 is a good buy.....

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  6. Lina - Yes, wifey can be wise and darned sarcastic at times ... LOL! But she does have a point though.

    Hahaha ... wifey has already snapped it off my hands!

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  7. Mas - It was driving me nuts but I just managed to get the latest plugin for it this morning so hopefully it works properly now :D

    I'm really happy with it :D Yes, I like the display info on the splits and the elevation too. The splits really helps to control my running and not let me speed too fast at the start (like I always do) and end up deflated by the finish.

    Here's to many miles of happy running :D

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  8. Anonymous (Santa Cruz) - First of all, welcome to my blog and secondly, the grass tastes bloody yummy though it could use some extra ketchup on it ... LOL!

    I'm hoping this will help improve my run to some semblance of decency, not forgetting the fact that it's an awesome gadget :D

    You have a friend who gives away Garmin's? You should have informed me before I bought this la. At least them I wouldn't have to resort to eating grass ... LOL!

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  9. Neoh - I thought it was a better buy than the 210 too :D For an additional 100 or so, getting the latest model cannot be bad, right :D

    Though I still have my eye on the foot pod which cost a whopping RM200! Maybe when I strike it rich, I just might consider that :D

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  10. Francis - Welcome to my humble running blog :D

    I'm not really sure yet how long the battery last cos I only used it yesterday. I'll let you know in a few weeks time :D

    As for the satellite, it really got a signal in less than 30 seconds. I was pleasantly surprised :D Maybe I was standing right under a satellite la ... LOL!

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  11. May I recommend a better Garmin compatible app IMHO? Google SportTracks 3 and download the free app. My regret is that it's only Windows compatible. The website is something like zonefivesoftware.com

    If you're using Buckeyeoutdoors to log ur workouts, they have a nice plugin to download directly from ur Garmin. Either of these are still better thanthe generic Garmin website in my opinion

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  12. Jamie - Thanks, I didn't know that :D I'll definitely check it out. I'm still new to this Garmin thing so any tips is very welcome :D

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  13. by the way
    it's a very comfortable thing:)

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  14. Intellectual Games - I take it you're referring to the watch :D

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