How To Select a Great Smartwatch For Running

How To Select a Great Smartwatch For Running?

If you want to achieve your fitness goal by getting a smartwatch for running, you are on the right path since they are already on the leading edge of fitness wearable technology. The best running watches are some of the most amazing, high-tech, and expensive wearables on the market. We’re talking about GPS, biometrics, and applications that analyze your data using artificial intelligence.

However, with so many running smartwatches available, it can be complex to make the right decision. Here is how to choose the right running watch for you.

smartwatch for runnning

How to Identify a Smartwatch For Running?

When individuals are looking to purchase smartwatches and trackers for running, they may also want them to be able to measure their activity during other activities, such as working out, swimming, cycling, and so on. However, if you want a specialized running smartwatch hrm, interval timer, and so on, you must be able to compare and contrast them:


It is an evident and simple trait to identify. Several characteristics distinguish a special smartwatch for running:

1. Material

These smartwatches are composed of hypoallergenic materials because when athletes sweat, microorganisms on their skin might trigger allergic reactions.

2. Clasp

It must be sturdy since there is a significant possibility of losing your best running smartwatch while jogging.

3. Weight

A smartwatch for running, like running shoes, must be lightweight. Running watch manufacturers realize this and strive to enhance running versions, such as the Garmin Forerunner, which weighs about 40 g. Form and weight are also crucial factors for females, so test on timepieces before purchasing.


It is essential if you are participating in sports with smartwatches in any weather. Most sporting equipment is waterproof and may utilize underwater; the only difference is the depth and duration of the dive. After swimming in the sea, you must wash your watches with running water.

Display And Control Keys

Running a smartwatch’s heart rate has numerous handy functions.

  • When you put your palm on top of the screen, it automatically turns on, as does the backlight. It is helpful if you are jogging in the evening or the sun is shining too brightly. 
  • Watches may also notify you when they need to charge. It is helpful if you are a marathon runner; this is an option you should consider when purchasing a running smartwatch.
man with a smartwatch for running

What Features Should a Smartwatch for Running Have?

When purchasing a smartwatch for running, runners often have a greater interest in understanding the product’s alternatives and functionalities, which are much more important than the design or usefulness.

1. The Running Time

Running time is one of the most fundamental functions of a smartwatch for running. This option measures the amount of time you have spent jogging; however, more professional smartwatches can also track rest time and auto-pause.

2. The Distance

One of the fundamental aspects. Simpler watches measure distance, whereas more advanced smartwatches count changes in the landscape, angle of the run, and height (pressure).

3. The Speed

A good smartwatch for running should track your average pace or speed in various portions of your journey.

4. The Pace

This indicator displays your average running speed and warns you whether to speed up or slow down when jogging.

5. The Heart Rate:

The running watch with a heart rate monitor allows you to assess your heart rate and select your heart rate zone based on your MAX heart rate index. All you have to do is use your fingertips or sophisticated equipment to measure your pulse.

6. Running Dynamics

Steps per minute are essential. In total, a smartwatch for running should display both the right and left steps.

7. Surface Height Measurement

Skyrunners and trail runners must have this feature in their running smartwatches. Similarly, Mountain runners must have a barometric altimeter. The pressure-based watches measure height independently of satellite signals.

How to Choose Your Smartwatch for Running based on your Activity Levels

Running requires a smartwatch, whether you are a novice or an expert. The choices and costs that each brand and model provide are different. There are three professional levels and characteristics that your smartwatches should have.

Occasional Runners

It would help if you used activity monitors or fitness bracelets. The following are the significant characteristics that your running watches should have:

  • Calories burned.
  • Steps taken each day.
  • Accelerometer-measured speed, pace, and distance.

Fitness bands are best used to assess your everyday activity rather than specialized running signs.

Beginners And Regular Runners

There is a broader range of requirements. You would rather have a running watch GPS to:

  • Calculate and measure the distance, speed, and pace more accurately
  • Upload your results in the app on your phone to compute your progress, build a program that includes your running regions, and share it with your friends.

Professional Runners Or Running Enthusiasts And Athletes Of Marathon

It is much superior to the smartwatch for running, available before. You’ll need a running watch interval timer. It counts your intervals and offers a recuperation counselor to assist you in making your workouts brighter, grade your physical indicators, and so on. 

Chest heart rate monitors are also convenient for experienced runners. They are the bands worn across the chest. This monitor allows you to accurately measure your heart rate, which is essential for most professional runners.

How To Choose The Best Running Watch For You?

When selecting the best running smartwatch for you, there are a few crucial factors to consider. Let’s take a closer look at each of these:

Current Goals

When selecting a smartwatch for running, your current aim is one of the first things to consider. Every runner can benefit from a GPS watch, but your needs may change depending on whether you’re running your first 5K or attempting a new PR in your next marathon.

For new runners, a watch that can help you construct a simple training regimen and give variety to your runs is beneficial. Consider how much you run each week and how dedicated you are to tracking your improvement.

Beginners may want simple features like GPS and heart rate monitoring. However, other factors such as stride length or water resistance may be essential if you’re training for a triathlon or an ultramarathon.

Even if you don’t have a set training plan, watches like the Garmin Forerunner 55 provide exercise tips to keep you from becoming bored with the same routine.

It also indicates how long you should rest and recuperate after each workout to get the most out of your training. On the other hand, Polar Grit X tracks your feeding strategy for long-distance races and training sessions, notifying you when it’s time to drink more carbohydrates and water.

Functions And Features of a Smartwatch for Running

Determine what you want in a smartwatch for running while keeping your budget in mind to limit your alternatives.

Hikers and trail runners who wish to monitor altitude and air pressure while exploring new paths may appreciate GPS watches with altimeters, barometers, and gyroscopes. However, they are more expensive, so you should consider where to perform most of your training.

If you want to run on roads, search for watches that have built-in visual maps to help you navigate new areas, as well as those that monitor your specific running stats and design unique programs for you.

Consider what kind of cross-training you’ll perform in addition to jogging. Surfing, snowboarding, cycling, and badminton are among the more than 80 sports activities available in some premium alternatives.

Although runners may use a smartwatch to monitor their runs, a smartwatch for running that is expressly intended for the purpose and includes physical buttons is always the superior alternative.

It allows you to operate the watch without glancing at the screen, access its menus, and stop and restart exercises even if your hands are sweaty.

woman checking her smartwatch for running

Battery Life

Another critical factor to think about is the device’s battery life. The last thing you want to see when you press the start button on your running watch is a low battery warning.

A running watch’s typical battery life is five days. However, specialized smartwatches, such as certain Garmin watches, are engineered to last far longer. Garmin Enduro, for example, has a battery that can last up to 50 days!

Remembering how long your battery lasts is directly linked to how often you use your running watch and which functions you utilize the most. For example, the battery will deplete quicker if you are a regular long-distance runner or if you want to get frequent GPS tracking and data such as VO2 max values.

Other Lifestyle Features

Consider specific lifestyle and habit-related qualities you may want once you’ve narrowed down your alternatives even more. For example, music and contactless payments may be helpful to particular runners. It enables you to keep yourself entertained with music or a podcast while running and stop purchasing a bottle of water or a fast snack if you don’t have your credit card.

These capabilities also make your running watch more usable for regular activities, saving you money on a second wristwatch after you finish training.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):

What Features Should A Running Smartwatch Have?

At the very least, you’ll want a watch that reliably records your heart rate and GPS location and provides feedback on your workouts to improve your performance.

What Is The Best Running Watch For A Beginner?

If you want to test out a smartwatch for running but aren’t ready to spend hundreds of dollars on features you may not need, the Garmin Forerunner 45 is a good option. It’s simple, but it provides the essentials: heart rate, GPS tracking, access to Garmin Coach, smart alerts, event detection, help, and up to seven days of battery life for a little over $100.

What Good Is A Running Smartwatch?

It’s just as helpful as you make it. I’ve discovered that collecting workout statistics pushes me to exercise more regularly and for extended periods. Better data means better training.

What Is The Difference Between A Running Watch And A Fitness Tracker?

Get a GPS running watch if you want to correctly measure your exercise distance and pace while leaving your phone at home. Get a fitness tracker if you’re going to monitor your walking or stair climbing but don’t care about accuracy.

What Should You Pay For A Fitness Smartwatch?

A basic smartwatch costs about $120. Suppose you want some premium features. Budget $250. If you want the finest, expect to pay $550 or more.

Is A Smartwatch for Running Necessary?

No. You can get up, put on your running shoes, and go for a run — but you won’t receive any exercise data and may get lost since you don’t have GPS and failed land navigation class. After all, not every runner is training with a smartwatch for running.

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