Having started this Hansons Marathon Method (recommended to me by the speedy and stylish Alice of Forestbound) I was really in need of something more to help me keep an eye on my pace. A lot of people I know have Garmins but it's definitely quite a commitment of a buy - especially for your first one. I wasn't too fussed about committing to a brand and storing all of my data, my main concern was starting with something that kept track of my pace and was relatively easy to use and not expensive so it was a nice coincidence when the nice people at Soleus sent me one of these Fit 1.0 GPS watches to try.
I've not completely left my iphone at home yet on my runs. I have been using my Nike+ app alongside this watch, just to log my miles as to not creep back down the leaderboard against my online running buddies. But as I've been listening to music less and less during my runs I've not had the Nike lady speaking in my ear telling me my pace per kilometre, instead I just run to the thoughts in my head and every now and then, glance down at my wrist to see my pace. (Does this mean I'm becoming a *real* runner?)
So, this watch. On first impression - I really liked the packaging! Charging it was easy, through my usb port on my mac. The first charge needed about 4 hours but after that it's only taken about an hour to charge from 0% to full. And since having it about a month I think I've only charged it once or maybe twice. Setting the time, date and other bits took a little bit of figuring out mainly because the instructions inside the box are very minimal but there are plenty of youtube instructional videos to show how to do this. Going for my first few runs as a complete newbie GPS watch wearer I didn't understand that I just had to stand outside and hold my watch still to zoom into the satellite. Once I figured this out it's easy and even some of the runs I did in France amongst farmers fields where sometimes the wi-fi and phone can be dodgy I had no problems getting signal on the watch.
It does what you need it to do - tells you your pace and mileage. I must admit I'm used to my iphone's colour screen, self explanatory instructions and moron-proof interactive touch screen user experience. Going back to using a watch with four buttons, one which says 'light/save, one which says 'start/stop', one which says 'mode/exit' and one which says 'lap/enter' - is still baffling me and I'll be honest and say I've stood on my drive before a few runs just pressing random combinations of buttons until I get to the screen where I can just press 'start' and go on my run. This could be because I've not done lots of online reading to figure it out and I've not tried any other GPS watches so I'm not sure if it's just me not being patient with the technology. Other than that though I've enjoyed taking the step up to using a GPS watch. My training plan contains some speed work and I'm already thinking it'd be cool to be able to setup specific speed sessions which I'm aware other more advanced watches do - but I think for investments like this there isn't any point in buying something until you realise what you need it for so unless you were wanting to do speed sessions, plot routes, etc this watch does everything you need it to do. (Well, within reason... I still can't even get my fiancee to make me a brew some mornings so I don't like to ask too much of an inanimate object)
What technology do you use for running? Now I am craving a cup of tea...