Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Techy Tuesday: Garmin Forerunner 405CX with HRM

Garmin Forerunner 405CX GPS Sport Watch with Heart Rate Monitor (Blue)If you read Saturday's post about my long run, the topic of this week's Techy Tuesday shouldn't be much of a surprise.  I have a new gadget to share!  My trip to Costco ended up with me bringing home a birthday present.  Shhhh - no one needs to know that my birthday is still 3 months away...hubs and I tend to do this. Fun things come up and they tend to become gifts for the next big occasion.

Well, this year, my birthday prezzie is a shiny new Garmin.  A Garmin Forerunner 405CX.   Costco was selling them for only $199 (a $70 savings over what the Running Room sells them for).   What was wrong with my 201, you may be asking...well, nothing really.  It has been taking a bit longer to pick up the satellites lately and I've had a couple of instances where it didn't want to sync for me (though that might have been a daily mile thing).  Ultimately, though, I probably would have been perfectly happy with it until it died had I not seen this one.

Costco used to sell the Forerunner 305 and I really hated that style.   It has a ridge on the underside that dug into my wrist and I really have no clue how people with larger wrists can even wear them if it hurt my teeny wrists!   So, I knew I would never own that model.   But I have been drooling over the 405 and the 110 for their simple style and minimal bulk.  I knew that if I were to replace my Garmin - it would be with one of these two.  It was purely serendipity that these were in the store this weekend...really.

Ok - on to the unboxing.


What's in the box:
  • Garmin 405CX
  • 2 velcro wrist straps (to fit larger and smaller wrists than the built in rubber strap)
  • Strap changing tool
  • Heart Rate Monitor strap
  • ANT+ usb thingy
  • Charging clip
  • wall adapter (including 3 different prong styles which makes it ideal for travel!)
It doesn't come with the ANT+ foot pod, but I think I may invest in that on a later date...I like the idea of having it in case I am traveling and need to use the hotel gym.

My initial thoughts:

  • It is much different to set up than the 201 was.  I fiddled with it for about a half hour before I had to concede and go online in search of training videos.  Once I watched a couple of the ones on the Garmin YouTube Channel - I went back to playing with much better luck.
  • The touch bezel is weird at first, but it starts to make better sense fairly quickly.
  • I really like that it only has 2 buttons.  I have a really bad habit of hitting the wrong button when I mean to hit STOP on my 201.  This one has a start/stop button on top and a lap button on the bottom.  Easy peasy.  I expect my race times will be far more accurate for it :)
  • While I do have teeny wrists, I found that I can probably get away with the strap that it comes with instead of swapping it out for one  of the velcro ones.  Guess we'll see how I feel after a few more runs.
  • It is definitely lighter than my 201...and since it takes up less real estate on my arm, I find it more comfortable.
  • I can't figure out how to set up the alarms like I have them on my 201.  I just want it to beep every 15 mins.  No biggie, though, since I can always set up a workout on it to time my walk breaks.  I just don't like that bossy beep that tells me to run again after a minute :P
  • First run with it, I had issues with the GPS, but it was an operator issue and it picked up within a half a block.  Much faster than my old one.   I think I have it figured out now so it won't happen again
  • It also took me a while to figure out how to sync with the ANT+ usb stick, but once I downloaded the software for it - it synced right away (to both Garmin Connect and Daily Mile) and was super speedy.  I'm impressed.   A firmware download was also super speedy.
  • It feels weird to not power this thing off after each run...instead - it just becomes a wristwatch.  It is going to take some time for me to get the hang of turning the GPS on and off before and after each run.

I have only run with it once so far (my legs (27K) and the thermometer (27*C)  did not want to cooperate with me getting in a Sunday run this week) but I really like it so far.  I am actually looking forward to wearing it for my half this coming weekend in Edmonton.


  1. I got the same one in April (from Costco) for my birthday! Love it!

  2. I'm still pretty excited :) Can't wait to take it out again tonight - I was really itching to take it out at 4am today so I could play with the backlight, but my silly kids had me up all night and 4am was not even a possibility...


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