I Got A Garmin Watch

I had originally bought a fitbit quite a while ago to encourage the grand kids to move since they got them for Christmas. It turned out I found the insights if not useful at least they were interesting and helped me push more out of my comfort zone with different types of activities.

The band that it came with broke so I ordered a new one on Amazon lover the summer but that one broke a few months later. It wasn’t that big of a deal the first time since it was cheap enough to replace and if one part of it could be reasonably expected to wear out it’s the band itself. The second band breaking was my fault. It was a cheap one and the metal part snapped when the sandbag pulled on it so that’s fair.

Also around this time the battery life had become quite inconsistent and seemed to be declining so I decided to look into a new watch. The fit bits seemed pretty poor per the reviews and customer service as abysmal from what I read. It was also announced the Google was buying the company and we all know how they tend to buy stuff then stop supporting it altogether and let it die more often than not. The other thing is I had patches of dead pixels on the screen. They weren’t effecting the ability to use it but that was another factor that drove me away from fit bits.

I found the garmins and my experience with anything Garmin has been pretty excellent at least with the GPSrs we use for geocaching. The garmins are more expensive but that seems like a fair trade off as the garmins seem to do a lot more and even their older models are still getting updates and supported reasonably well. Still getting firmware updates and bug fixes at least.

The wrist heart rate sensor seems to track reasonably well enough for the convenience of it. Wrist flexing activities seem to throw it off but that can be expected, it’s a weakness of these sensors. You can connect a blue tooth chest strap to it and that’s what I do when doing WODs or things like that. This has been flawless so far for my use cases.

It has a built in GPS that can be used with outside activities like walking or running and it’s been great for those. It’s really nice to have it measure the distance of a run for me if I have a certain distance planned or to confirm my previous thoughts. Turns our our 400 meter spot to turn around in runs was just a little bit longer than that. Due to weather and other non controllable things in life I haven’t been able to try it out on a nice good hike yet. Hopefully once things settle down some we can do that.

The stress tracking and body battery are certainly interesting statistics to keep an eye on. I do think at times my body battery gets lower than it should be since I still feel fine but it’s surely a useful metric to give me an idea when I do need to rest so I don’t get too disappointed if I have an off day and my performance drops significant in a WOD that though I should’ve performed better at than I did. It’s really interesting how much drinking alcohol effects the stress. I mean I know alcohol is technically a poison and stressor but the watch really hammers that home.

The sleep tracking, at least for me, is pretty good now. It’s not as detailed as the fitbit was but it’s just fine for my curiosity. It seems to fit pretty well wit reality for me.

The only thing I wish now is that maybe I wish I would have gotten one of the more advanced models than the vivoactive. Maybe I’ll see a good deal one one at some point and pick it up. For one thing they seem to have better battery life but for my needs the battery in my vivoactive 4 is just fine so far. I just charge it when I get a shower.

The build quality so far seems really good for it. I have no reason to doubt that it should be pretty durable for my intentions. The screen isn’t visibly scratched yet and I have scraped it across things. As a matter of fact I just did that the other day carrying the box back into the garage. It’s a tight fit through the sliding glass door so the watch when across the door frame, oops! The screen is nice for sure. Unlike the old fitbit, The Garmin’s screen is pretty visible even outside in the sunlight. No doubt for someone with normal vision it would be even better without the back light but for me I have to bring it so close to my face it goes into my shadow but that will be an issue with any device for me, hell it’s even a problem reading a label or something.