I’ve been researching possible GPS watch replacements for my Garmin 405 for quite some time. The 405 has treated me quite well, and was the first GPS watch I ever owned. Hanging out in the memory of my 405 is over 5,000 miles of running memory, and by association, the history of my evolution as a runner. However, as my running distances have increased, the battery in the 405 just hasn’t been able to keep up like it once did, and it was time for a change.
For quite a while, I had been dead set on changing directions and going with the Suunto Ambit. The battery life, along with the open-source software made it an exciting choice for this tech junkie. However, the more I read reviews and analyzed the performance data, the more I realized that the Garmin 910xt was a better choice for me. I’m a huge fan of the wireless syncing capabilities of the 405 (via ANT +), and the 910xt shares this feature. The Ambit requires use of the USB cable, which is also used for charging and would have been logistically annoying. The 910xt also syncs seamlessly with my Strava and Dailymile accounts, whereas the Ambit would have required downloading the .gpx file and then re-uploading it into the applications. These little differences make all the difference for me!
I now have a solid 20 hrs of battery life on my wrist, which should get me through most runs I’ll be doing in the near future, and I can extend it even further if I turn off the GPS and pair it with a foot pod, which is great. I was never a huge fan of the touch bezel on the 405 (neither were others, hence the quick change by Garmin), so I’m quite pleased with the ease-of-use buttons on the 910xt. In addition, the display is nice and big, without seeming like I’m wearing a computer on my wrist, and they kept the profile slim enough that it isn’t out of the question to wear it for everyday use as well.
I’ve squeezed in two runs this weekend, and I’m excited for the miles this watch has ahead of it. I’m fairly certain that the beautiful epicurean, a budding runner herself, is excited by the fact that she is inheriting the 405 as well. Needless to say, we are now a happy GPS-enabled running household!