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Garmin Forerunner 620 - Black/Blue Bundle (Includes Heart Rate Monitor)
|Price:||$299.99 + $5.49 shipping|
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- Advanced GPS running watch with a high-resolution color display and comfortable, lightweight design
- Built-in accelerometer tracks distance and pace when indoors
- Connected features2 include automatic uploads to Garmin Connect, live tracking and social media sharing so you can promote your achievements to your friends
- When paired with a heart rate monitor, Forerunner 620 can help gauge your fitness level through advanced features like recovery advisor, race predictor and VO2 max estimate
- When paired with the HRM-Run monitor1, the Forerunner 620 provides feedback on running form by measuring cadence, vertical oscillation and ground contact time.
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Advanced Running Watch with Recovery Advisor
- Touchscreen GPS running watch with high-resolution color display that tracks distance, pace and heart rate¹
- Calculates your recovery time and VO2 max estimate when used with heart rate
- HRM-Run™ monitor¹ adds data for cadence, ground contact time and vertical oscillation
- Connected features²: automatic uploads to Garmin Connect, live tracking, social media sharing
- Compatible with free training plans from Garmin Connect
It’s the next best thing to having your own personal running coach. Forerunner 620 features recovery advisor, race predictor and VO2 max estimate so you can train smarter. When used with the HRM-Run monitor¹, the 620 also gives you feedback on your running form by showing your cadence, ground contact time and vertical oscillation. For indoor training, the built-in accelerometer tracks distance, so you don’t need a separate foot pod.
It Knows Your Potential
Forerunner 620 can estimate your VO2 max, your body’s maximal oxygen consumption. Knowing your VO2 max is a great way to measure your physical fitness and improve your performance. When used with a heart rate monitor, the 620 crunches data, including your running speed, beats per minute and heart rate variability to estimate your VO2 max. The number itself indicates the maximum volume of oxygen you can consume per minute, per kilogram of body weight at your max performance.
A color gauge on the watch shows how your VO2 max data compares to other runners of your gender and age range. Based on your VO2 max estimate, the 620 can predict your race times for several distances. This can give you a time target for your next race, assuming you’ve completed proper training.
Rest Day or Run Day
With Forerunner 620, you don’t have to guess how much recovery time you need between workouts. It knows your physiology based on your heart rate data, so it factors this against your last workout and then shows how much time before you are fully recovered and ready for your next hard running workout.
When wearing HRM-Run, the 620 provides a recovery check, which is a real-time indication of your state of recovery within the first several minutes of your run. When you’ve completed a run, the recovery time shows how long before you should attempt another hard workout. Color coding on the gauge makes it easy to interpret — green means you’re good to go. When you see red and a recovery time of more than 3 days, you might consider taking a rest day or just doing a light recovery run.
Following Your Form
The 620 is the first GPS running watch that provides feedback on your running form by reporting multiple metrics. When used with the HRM-Run monitor¹, the 620 reports your cadence, vertical oscillation and ground contact time. These metrics are called running dynamics, and they effect your running economy.
The HRM-Run has an accelerometer, which measures your torso movement as you run to compute these metrics. Cadence is the total number of steps you take per minute, left and right foot combined. Vertical oscillation is the degree of “bounce” in your running motion, measured in centimeters. Ground contact time is just like it sounds — the amount of time your foot spends on the ground during each running step, measured in milliseconds. A color gauge makes it easy to see how your running dynamics compare to other runners.
Forerunner 620 can send your data wirelessly to Garmin Connect. It can transfer the data through the Garmin Connect Mobile app on your smartphone. You can also set up one or more Wi-Fi hot spots, and the 620 will automatically sync with Garmin Connect when in range.
It also features live tracking, which allows your friends and fans to follow along and see your stats in real time. Pair your phone with the 620 throughout your run to use LiveTrack. You can also share your victories by posting updates through social media with the Garmin Connect Mobile app. And, for real-time coaching as you run, the 620 is compatible with free training plans at Garmin Connect. By regularly connecting your watch to Garmin Connect, you'll also benefit from a faster GPS fix due to satellite data that will be sent to your device automatically.
¹Included with some models, sold separately on others.
²When paired with a compatible smartphone.
Top customer reviews
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Bottom line if you are a runner and want a serious HRM with GPS that can provide you with a significant amount of accurate data look no further.
I love this watch! This watch doesn't have a beautiful display like an iPhone, but it works. I don't have any issues with the display or the touchscreen. Garmin is using a resistive touchscreen which is different than the capacitive touchscreen used on modern day smartphones. Again, this hasn't been an issue for me. I use the watch for tracking runs. I don't use the watch for reading text messages, browsing the web, or watching videos. This is a utility item first and foremost.
I run four days a week for approximately 3.5 to 4 hours. I used up 53% battery life in my first week of use. This watch may not have the best color display and/or touchscreen experience but I don't have to charge it very often either. This is a huge bonus for me.
The bluetooth connectivity works as expected. You have to open the app and unlock the watch before activities upload, but I don't find that to be an issue.
I use the watch to upload activities to Strava, RunKeeper, and MapMyFitness as well. Strava is the only site that doesn't like the Forerunner 620. I have to manually select the .fit file for upload. The other services recognize the watch and upload the activity through the Garmin Communicator plugin. However, Strava displays the cadence information. RunKeeper does not.
Alerts are another area where the Garmin shines. I have used the pace, heart rate, cadence alerts recently. The pace and cadence alerts allowed me to stay on target for a recent race. The heart rate alerts helped me pace out a slow and long run. The alerts are easy to setup and very helpful. If you trigger an alert the watch will vibrate to get your attention. This will occur every few seconds until you are back in compliance with the threshold.
The 620 can use the power cord as a connection to upload your data. It can also use your wireless network and I believe it can use wifi and connect via your smartphone, though I haven't tried through the smartphone yet. It may be that they have fixed some of the issues that people had when they initially released this watch, but so far (knocking on wood!) I've had no issues at all. After a run I usually come in through my basement, clean all my equipment and then head upstairs where the computer/router are located. More often than not, the data is uploaded before I get upstairs. When it isn't, all I've had to do was press the connect button on my watch and it goes to work.
I received the watch a day before a race. My first run with the watch was 2 miles easy just as a warmup for the race the next day. In that first run, using my age, height, weight and the heart rate and pace that I was running the watch extrapolated my VO2max and gave me prediction times for 5k, 10k, half marathon and marathon. After that first run it predicted a 20:19 for me for 5k. I had run a 5k about two weeks previous with a finishing time of 20:22. It had me at 1:34:30 for half marathon, I ran a half marathon about a month earlier in 1:37:30, but I went out way too fast and lost about 3 minutes in the last two miles. (I guess the watch can't factor in stupidity!!) I was pretty impressed with this aspect of the watch. In the month or so since I got it my VO2max has gone up about 4 points and now the predictions are probably a bit out of my range for right now, but to me it's very interesting to see.
This watch also measures cadence, vertical oscillation and ground contact time by means of a sensor in the heart rate monitor. (You do have to have the sensor that is black with a white stick figure runner on it. My 310 has the old sensor that is just solid black and it doesn't measure these things.) Cadence is essentially how many steps you are taking, vertical oscillation is how high you are bouncing and ground contact time is how long your feet are on the ground while you are running. I categorize these in the "interesting to see, but don't get too hung up on them" area as well. Garmin connect evaluates you in these areas and in my case, for instance, you would think that cadence is my "problem" area. However, it even states that taller runners often have lower cadences. I average between 150 and 160 strides per minute typically which is "average". It's something to think about, but I'm not going to start chop stepping just to raise that number. I have looked at my faster runs and those do tend to be my higher cadences, but not by a great amount. It seems that in my case I tend to lengthen my stride more than speed it up. You also get an average stride length on Garmin connect.
The 620 measures distance and heart rate just like the previous 310xt (and most of their other models as well). I'd say in those cases it works about the same. I was curious as to whether a 5 mile run on my 310xt was going to be 4.9 or 5.1 on the 620 and for the most part it hasn't been. There is always a little bit of variation, but nothing major. As an example, I have an 8 mile run that I do fairly frequently that is out and back. I run out 4 miles and come right back to the place I started on the same road. I always turn around at the same place regardless of what the watch says. Usually it clicks 4 miles in a stretch of give or take 20 or 30 yards. Sometimes a little short, sometimes a little long and it works the same way at the finish. I usually run until it clicks 8 miles and that varies by give or take 20 or 30 yards. I've never hit 8 miles a half mile short or gotten to where I started and had the watch show 7.5... How accurate is it?? Would I bet my life on it being down to the yard? Not a chance, but I'd say it is every bit as accurate as driving the course in my car and way more accurate than my old "guesstimations".
I still have some issues with garmin connect. It gives you mile splits, but doesn't give you cumulative times. Meaning, if you do a 4 mile run it might say you went 1 mile 8:20, 2nd mile 8:30, 3rd mile 8:30 and 4th mile 8:20 and give you a total time of 33:40, however it won't tell you that you hit 2 miles at 16:50, and 3 miles at 25:20. Why not? After years of running, I can add that stuff up in my head, but why should I have to? Also, it tracks your PR's. (Personal Records) However, it only allows PR's for 1k, 1 mile, 5k, 10k, half marathon and marathon. First of all I like to keep track of everything. I have 2 or 3 different 5 mile courses that I run frequently and I not only like to keep track of my best 5 mile time, I'd like to be able to keep track of my best 5 mile on each course! There are also other distances for racing. I ran a 5 mile race this year and it should have been a PR... but garmin doesn't allow it. I also recently ran a mile PR on the track. However, the watch only registered 0.95 miles for my 4 laps. (1600 meters is actually about 6 meters short of a mile, but running around in circles is not optimal for the GPS in the watch.) That was too far off and I wasn't given the record. I can "force" it, but I'd like for them to consider allowing me to determine what is a PR and what isn't including distances.
On the whole, the 620 is for me right now the watch I thought the 310xt should have been, but never really was. I criticized Garmin a fair amount in this review, but I promise you I do believe that they are moving in the right direction even if they haven't gotten to where I'd like them to be now. I am very happy with the 620 at this point in time. As time progresses I will revisit this review and update it. If you buy the 620 I hope it works as well for you as it has for me and thanks for taking the time to read my review!