GPS Watches for Dummies – A Short Buying Guide

gps watches

GPS watches are all the rage right now, and it’s easy to see why.

Unlike traditional fitness trackers that were used to monitor a handful of details, GPS trackers handle everything that those outdated options used to while at the same time providing you with detailed information about your exact location, speed, and so much more.

With so many different GPS watch options available today, however, it can be a bit of a headache trying to find the right one. This short buying guide is going to give you the inside information you need to purchase the best GPS watch for you!

GPS watches blow fitness trackers out of the water

Fitness tracking devices have become almost ubiquitous today, but they are absolutely nothing compared to GPS watches that come with fitness tracking technology or GPS watches that pair with smart mobile devices.

Not only are you going to be able to track all of the essential fitness information you need to know about (we’re talking about calories burned, overall speed, and the time that you have spent exercising or training), but you’re also going to receive detailed information about every single movement you make.

GPS technology will track your position on the planet and allow you to overlay your movements on a real-time map so that you can lay out smart training routes, but it’s also going to tell you about any and all changes in elevation, changes in speed, and a lot of other information that you simply wouldn’t have had access to otherwise.

GPS watches are head and shoulders above traditional fitness tracking solutions, so much so that it isn’t even a competition between these two any longer. You’d have to be at least a little bit crazy not to want to get your hands on one of these amazing devices.

GPS watches are almost always built with heart rate monitor tracking technology

Another big benefit that GPS watches enjoying over traditional fitness tracking solutions is that they are almost always bundled with heart rate monitor (HRM) technology built right into the same device.

Because GPS watches have a large and easy to read screen, you’re going to be able to get on-the-fly information regarding your heart rate whenever you need it. This means that you’ll always be in the “fat burning zone” if that’s what you’re training protocol calls for, and you’ll be able to either shift up your intensity or shift down to something more relaxing depending upon where your heart rate falls along that spectrum.

But that doesn’t mean that you’re only going to be able to use the HRM technology when you are active. You can also use this technology on your GPS watch throughout the day to know when you are stressed out and need to calm down for a little while. The benefits that this technology (bundled with GPS) offers are absolutely unparalleled.

Pretty much every GPS watch is manufactured with water and weather resistance

Because even the least expensive GPS watches going to send you back at least $100 or so (and sometimes considerably more than that when you approach the higher end of the market), you’re going to want to know that your watch isn’t going to fail you in inclement weather.

The overwhelming majority of GPS watches on the planet today are built with water and weather resistance that you are going to be able to count on in most situations you’ll ever find yourself in. Many of these watches are designed as triathlon ready pieces of technology, meaning that you’ll be able to have them on your wrist whether you are running, biking, or swimming. This is a major advantage over more traditional devices that aren’t going to be able to be used in wet situations.

On top of that, the bulk of the solutions out there are also going to be protected against damage. Because these watches are so regularly worn during training, the manufacturers behind the solutions understand that they are going to deal with a lot rougher life than most traditional watches. They are designed to resist dents, dings, and damage!

Check to see if your GPS watch comes with an altimeter

Some of the highest and GPS watches are going to include a built-in barometric altimeter that provides you with even more accuracy than a traditional GPS unit could.

These are especially useful for those that are anticipating doing a lot of off-road running or bicycling, as well as those that want to be able to measure just how high they are able to climb during each and every training session. The built-in altimeter is going to give you detailed information about elevation changes, critical details that may help you better understand your athletic performance when the elevation changes.

If you have ever spent any amount of time in a “mile high” area like Denver, Colorado (for example), you know just how much rising above sea level can have on your athletic performance, your endurance, and your ability to push through challenges.

An altimeter is definitely a special feature you’ll want to look for in your new GPS watch. That’s for sure!

Bluetooth connectivity is a must

Though there are going to be a lot of different special features that you’ll want to be on the lookout for when it comes time to purchase a new GPS watch, one of the most important special features is the latest Bluetooth connectivity technology.

You are going to want to be able to wirelessly communicate between your GPS watch and your smart phone or mobile device, giving you instant access to the data that you are collecting with your watch but also giving you the ability to use that data to inform your training on the fly.

You’re also going to want to be able to pull off historical GPS watch information to track and chart your progress. There’s nothing like training with this kind of information on hand – you’ll shortcut your progress dramatically and speed up your results!

What would you choose?

When it comes time to purchase a new GPS watch, you’re definitely going to have a lot of different options to pick and choose from.

Really think about how you anticipate using this new watch, what you hope to get out of it, and how much you’re willing to spend and you won’t have any trouble at all walking away with the best choice for your needs.

Hopefully we have been able to help!