Having used other GPS manufacturers in the past she often struggled with their, at times, complex use - top right button for this, then top left button for the next stage, then bottom right button to proceed... Oops, no that should've been the bottom left button...! TomTom's watches have an interactive square with the relatively simple idea of pressing Right to select and Left to deselect, then up or down within selected menus.
The previous generation TomTom watches she used as well. They've made some notable improvements, one we especially like is the Indoor function so you can use the wrist-based heart function indoors for spin, bodypump, etc classes. Previously the only way around using the heart rate indoors was to put the watch into Treadmill mode - the other Sports all wanted to search for a GPS. Subsequently the Training Diary that the watch uploads to on TomTom's MySports Connect website showed an almost endless number of Treadmill runs of random short distances the watch thought she'd run, when we only wanted to heart rate information from the workout!
Now the online Training Diary separates the indoor Gym workouts from any (actual) treadmill run, or outdoor run. The outdoor runs in the list of activities have a small map next to them displaying your route. This may assist with differentiation of activities if more than one person is using the watch in a household. The website doesn't (yet) allow you to put your own text into individual activities.
Typical use of the watch could be - Right to go into the Activities menu. Run is the first option, so pressing right again selects this activity. Or you would scroll down to Cycle, next Swim (measures your strokes and lengths in a pool or distance swimming outdoors), Treadmill (built-in Accelerometer measures distance which can be calibrated after each run for better accuracy), Gym (for indoor workouts, ideal for heart rate), Indoor Bike (Speed/Cadence sensor required), Freestyle (requires GPS - for any other activity: walking, skiing, etc), Stopwatch.
Once in Run mode the QuickGPS typically finds satellites within seconds. Before hitting GO you can press down for numerous Training options, such as running a Goal - e.g. 5k in 30mins: displays these parameters in a chart counting down; Intervals – e.g. 400m reps, 1 min rest, the watch will bleep at you between each of these parameters; Laps – e.g. you want the watch to bleep every 500 meters, just set it; Zones - to buzz when outside a heart rate zone or pace zone you've set; Race - program your favourite loop and race it with this function, it will show (and buzz) if you're ahead or behind of the run you initially saved on the watch.
Now you're running, you have two smaller display fields of your choice always present, plus you can scroll to a larger field, so you can see up to three fields at once, usually with your most important field as the larger one. You can then scroll Up or Down to view other fields and press Right to view information on any goals, laps, intervals or race you’ve started. To pause the workout it's one press to the Left. To end the workout press Left again (the pressing twice to end is to avoid accidental stopping of workout).
The other activities work in very similar ways.
In this Runner 2 watch, TomTom have improved the Optical connection to the wrist for an improved heart rate reading. My wife’s readings appear to be as accurate as we’d expect them to be during a number of different activities she’s undertaken. Plus she prefers the non-chest strap heart rate recording.
When plugging the watch into the PC, information downloads to the MySports Connect program (download free onto your PC) from where you can add other training diary sites such as Strava, MapMyFitness, etc… and your activities will appear there too. The watch can also wirelessly upload to an app on Apple or Android (no other platforms at present).
Took a little while to work out the Music feature and how to put music on - create a playlist on iTunes first (or other similar platforms), then move the playlist onto the watch’s memory via the online MySports Connect program. When the watch is plugged into the PC and connected to the MySports Connect program, it will search for playlists and list them.
The watch pairs with wireless headphones and works fantastically well. The lack of wires is a feature as is not having to carry an additional music device. The playlist can be put in a random order on the watch or played in the order of the playlist. On the headphones you can increase/decrease volume, skip tracks and pause the music. The watch can store up to 500 songs (3 GB).
The watch can last up to 5 hours with GPS, Cardio and Music all simultaneous, up to 11 hours just GPS and up to 3 weeks in Watch and Activity Tracking mode. The watch can keep count of your steps daily and weekly, plus record your movements during sleep to inform you of how well (or not) you slept.
A good, versatile watch for
many sporting activities. From a running perspective it’s easy to use, no chest
strap, carries your music and has many additional complementary functions. Much
to like about it. All of these watches are MultiSport so you can run, swim and bike with the same watch.
Available in Running, Running with Cardio, Running with Cardio + Music