PR Hydration Belt Review

Happy Friday and welcome back to the Tale of 2 Halfs. Jen is out of town this weekend enjoying some time with one of her sisters in Nashville and I am here in New York with the kids holding down the fort. Since I had the day off, I finally had the time to do my review of the PR Hydration Belt — a 3-bottle belt by sold by SLS3.

As I have made very aware in the past, I am affiliated with SLS3 as a member of their 2016 Racing Team. As a byproduct of that partnership, I have lots of SLS3 gear in my closet and receive new gear occasionally throughout the year. I received this belt last month and have been using it since. Now, onto the legal stuff:

This post is sponsored by SLS3. We were provided the PR Hydration Belt to try for review purposes and no other compensation was received. As usual, all thoughts and opinions are our own!

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The PR Hydration belt features:

  • ✅ ZIPPERED POUCH (4″x 2.5″): removable – holds keys, money, energy gels and other essentials.
  • ✅ SIZE: Fully adjustable elastic stretch waistband and Velcro closure for a customized, comfortable no-bounce fit – waist size 32-40 inches. Not recommended for smaller athletes.
  • ✅ BOTTLE HOLDERS: New holster design provides easy, one-handed, on-the-fly access to hydration and nutrition
  • ✅ BOTTLES: Three ergonomic, leak proof, dishwasher safe and BPA-free 7 oz (200 ml) bottles included.
  • ✅ MATERIAL: Breathable backing wicks moisture away and keeps you cool.

Now on to my thoughts about the belt. I would first like to highlight one of the points above –  Not recommended for smaller athletes. The belt is designed for 32 – 40 inch waists and those right at 32″ should be aware that it could be a little loose fitting.  I have a 31 – 32 inch waist and I needed to secure the Velcro almost at the end to get a good and comfortable fit. In SLS3’s defense, they do warn buyers twice in the description as to this limitation.

The second thought I have about the belt is in regards to the size of the bottles. 7 ounces is a little smaller than some bottles currently available. I have a two bottle belt that totals 20 ounces compared to this three bottle system at 21 ounces. This is unfortunately not enough fluids for me to get through my longer runs of 16, 18 and 20 miles plus, forcing me to also bring along a hand held water bottle.

The PR Hydration belt is comfortable to wear. The quality of the materials and assembly seem very good and I think the belt will last for a long time. I would like to see SLS3 alter the size of the water bottles and the fastener in a future update to this belt. I would recommend minimum 9 ounce bottles and a plastic buckle fastener. Velcro has too much a tendency to wear out over time and when you need to know something is secure, this could become a problem.

Overall, despite my few objections, I do think this is a very good product and frankly, you can’t go wrong when right now you can purchase a PR Hydration Running Belt from Amazon for only $24.90 (reg. $44.90). I purposely kept this review short because I have done a ten minute video review linked below. Please check out the video and feel free to leave a comment or question. Thanks for stopping by and enjoy your weekend.

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Review of Garmin’s Vivoactive HR

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Garmin recently released their Vivoactive HR smart watch and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. I had been stalking online and box store retailers anxiously awaiting its release. While we were on vacation, my wife found that Best Buy had just received their stock in-store. We immediately ordered it online, with in-store pickup, and one hour later it was in my hands. The Vivoactive HR was announced in mid-February and has been on display at electronic and technology conferences all spring. Various bloggers, product reviewer’s and others close to Garmin got the product early to test, blog about and review. Just like last year, I did not! It’s quite the travesty (pun intended!) I know. However, since I paid for my Vivoactive HR I’m going to give you an honest review. Last year, I wrote a Quick Review of the Garmin Vivoactive, and although it has been the most viewed post on our site the last year, I’m going to try to do better this year and provide more insight to the newest edition.

Without further ado, here we go!

Unboxing & Setup:

Inside the package you will find the following – the Vivoactive HR, the charging cable, the quick start manual and Garmin product safety information.

The Vivoactive HR comes standard with five watch faces, rather than one on the original.

Although the standard watch faces do not have as much information on the screen as some you can download from the Connect IQ Store, they are designed to limit the drain on your battery. Setup of the new watch is very straightforward and simple. I did not take pictures of this process for two reasons – one, I was on vacation and didn’t have the right equipment and, two, I was very excited to start using it. The watch simply walks you through setup screens where it will ask you your preferences and personal information.

Comparison to Original Vivoactive:

Garmin made significant changes to the style and shape in this years Vivoactive HR. I made a comparison video highlighting the differences in size, layout and feel of the watch in the video below.

Widgets & Screens:

The Vivoactive HR has several pre-loaded widgets that display on separate screens. On-device widgets/screens include: my day, intensity minutes, heart rate, last sport, smart notifications, weather, VIRB® action camera/remote, Varia remote, music player controls, calendar, steps, calories, sleep, run, bike, swim and golf.

Most of the widget screens even have additional screens you can get to in order to see even more detailed information. Below are examples of the weather widget.

One last example is the Intensity Minutes widget.

Featured Sports:

The Vivoactive HR improves on the original Vivoactive when it comes to sports that it can track. On-device sports apps now include: running, indoor running, biking, indoor biking, walking, indoor walking, rowing, indoor rowing, pool swimming, golfing, skiing/snowboarding, cross country skiing, and stand-up paddle boarding (SUP). Plus, with the addition of the ‘Add New Activity’ feature, you can customize an application for a sport/activity of your choosing – such as Ultimate Frisbee.

Setting up an new activity is very easy to do by following the on-screen instructions and options.

  1. Click ‘Add New’
  2. Select the type of activity you want to track – in our Ultimate Frisbee example, you would want to track your ‘Cardio’.
  3. Choose a color of the logo – I chose red.
  4. Choose a name – the only options are Cardio or Other. I chose Other. It would be nice if in a future software update we would be given the ability to actually type in a name of our choosing.
  5. Voila!

Steps / Activity Tracking:

The Vivoactive HR continues the tradition of the Garmin Vivo products and incorporates a daily activity tracker. It tracks your steps, distance, floors climbed as well as your calories burned throughout the day. It displays most this information on the ‘Steps’ widget screen, while the calories burned has its own widget and can also be viewed on the ‘My Day’ screen. Additionally, the Vivoactive HR has the Move Bar which will display on your main watch face after a period of inactivity – beginning at one hour and then increasing incrementally every 15 minutes up to a max period of inactivity of two hours. To reset the move bar, a short walk of a couple minutes should do the trick. If your Move Bar is fully filled you may need to walk a few hundred yards to clear the Move Bar. Finally, the Vivoactive also incorporates a Sleep Tracker that will monitor your total sleep and periods of movement during sleep.

While the step counter is still gracious in the number of steps it awards throughout the day in total, it is very accurate if you’re actually walking. If you count out 100 steps, the device is right on. One area I have seen major improvement over last years model is while driving. Last years original Vivoactive would give me a ton of steps while driving. The new watch has been very less gracious in this area. In fact, it only counted 26 steps during a period of six hours of driving. With that improvement alone, the device should be more accurate. You will still receive some steps while bathing, brushing your teeth or washing your vehicle, but unless you remove your watch while doing these activities there really is no way to avoid it.

Running:

In my opinion, the most important feature of the watch is running. While I love the other sports and like having them handy, I use my watch mostly for running. Two running modes are included – GPS enabled and indoor treadmill. To begin a run, the steps are simple:

  1. Press the Menu button (bottom right)
  2. Select ‘Run’ (GPS Enabled)
  3. Wait for the red “GPS” at the top-left to turn green. You are now connected to the satellites.
  4. Press Start (menu button, bottom right)

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The Vivoactive HR again incorporates three separate screens for your reference with each screen containing three data fields. The data fields can be customized to your liking and can be changed easily.  There are numerous options to choose from: Time, Distance, Pace, Speed, Heart Rate, Cadence, Temperature, Elevation, and other. Listed under the other field include: Calories, Heading, Laps, Sunrise and Sunset, Time of Day, Steps, and Connect IQ fields that you have downloaded from the Connect IQ store.

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After your run you simply hit the stop button (menu button, bottom right). The watch will ask you if you want to save your run or discard it. The save screen has been changed from last years watch for the better. It incorporates larger “Save” and “Discard” buttons and uses color as well. They are also slightly separated on the Vivoactive HR which is great and should prevent the accidental deletes that occurred on last years original Vivoactive. Additionally, Garmin included a verification screen should you decide you want to discard an activity. This was not standard on last years watch and didn’t arrive for a few months into the products life – after I had already deleted many runs last year.

Reviewing a run on your watch is very easy under the ‘Last Sport’ screen and contains detailed information, lap times and time spent in heart rate zones. You can also delete your activity from this screen, should you choose so.

GPS Accuracy:

So Garmin is know for GPS – it’s what they built their company on. In fact, they are highly regarded as the best in the business. With that said, there’s still some things we can discuss. For starters, it was originally announced that the new Vivoactive HR would have 1 sec. recording for a more accurate picture of where you went. However, when the watch was released it is only using smart recording. What’s the difference?

The primary benefit with smart recording is that you can record more, or longer events, before your memory gets full. A secondary benefit is that the time it takes to transfer your activity will also be shorter. This disadvantage to this is that you don’t get as good as resolution.

The primary benefit with 1 sec. recording is the detail of your activity, especially any activity where you have frequent turns. By recording a data point every second, you have a very accurate picture of where you traveled which translates into very accurate distance traveled and shows up very well on your activity map in Garmin Connect. The biggest disadvantage to this is the file size is very large on your watch and takes up a lot of storage. It will also take much longer to sync and transfer the information.

While I have been using the watch, I have only had one issue where the GPS was not accurate.

As you can see from the images above, the Vivoactive HR was acting a little goofy on this run. This was only the second run I did with the new watch and this issue has not happened since. I have been running routes that I am very familiar with, down to the exact location of where each mile is, and the Vivoactive HR has been hitting all the marks lately. If I run into future issues, I will be sure to update this post.

Smartwatch Features:

The Vivoactive HR pairs with your smartphone to gently vibrate and display alerts for incoming calls, texts, emails and calendar items plus notifications from social media – such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – and other mobile apps you allow like CNN or Yahoo! News.

You are also supposed to be able to receive turn-by-turn directions on your watch when you have a map software, such as Google Maps, running on your smartphone. While I was able to set it up and receive some information, it is far from turn-by-turn directions.  It does not provide the direction of your next turn, the name of the street you will be turning onto or the street you are currently on. Instead, all that is displayed is simply a dot with the distance till the next turn (or destination). I have not yet figured out if it is the map software I am using or if that is all you get. I will be sure to update this post once I find out.

All of these connected features require that you have a compatible device and that the Bluetooth is turned on and connected.

Connect IQ:

The Vivoactive HR supports Garmin’s Connect IQ store. What is Connect IQ?

Connect IQ allows developers to create custom apps that individuals can install and use on Garmin devices. Apps take many forms, like custom watch faces for wearable devices, widgets that provide quick information at a glance, personalized data fields for built-in activities, or complete apps that add entirely new features.

Connect IQ ImageThe Connect IQ store has come a long way since it was unveiled in 2015 and developers have been working hard to test the limits of the watches and push the boundaries on what is useful and personalized.

Battery/Charging:

The battery life on the new Vivoactive is good. Garmin has advertised up to 13 hours in GPS mode and up to 8 days in smartwatch mode with 24/7 heart rate monitoring. While I have yet to achieve 8 days on a full charge, I am getting 6+ days. I use my watch for a run daily, although not all the runs use the GPS and therefore do not add substantially to the battery drain. Of particular note for those interested in longer events and worried about battery life, I have completed a 20-mile run on a fresh battery and used 15% of the battery over two and half hours. Garmin’s estimates of 13 hours in GPS mode equates to a battery drain of approximately 7.7% per hour. I have been seeing a battery drain between 6 – 7% drain, so slightly better than advertised in that aspect.

As typical with Garmin devices, they have developed their own proprietary charging cable to accommodate their devices. I like the new charging cable ten fold over last years model. The device is secure and creates a great connection every time.

Heart Rate:

By far the biggest addition to this years watch is the addition of Garmin’s Elevate Heart Rate sensor. The Elevate sensor is the same that is used in other Garmin devices. The watch uses 24/7 heart rate monitoring in the form of heart rate samples every ten minutes. These samples are transferred to your heart rate graph on the screen below showing the last 4 hours. Your current heart rate is displayed in the upper left corner (next to the heart icon) when you are on this screen. Your Resting Heart Rate (RHR) is displayed in the upper right of the screen.

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To few more detailed information regarding your heart rate, you can go to Garmin Connect on your computer or mobile device.

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I have found that the Elevate heart rate sensor is very accurate throughout the day and while running. I wish I had some comparison graphs for you, but that will have to wait for now. Some users (not me) are reporting issues with the heart rate sensor while doing cross-training or strength training activities. The Vivoactive HR can also pair with an external heart rate chest strap if you would prefer for activities. Lastly, it should be noted that while swimming, the heart rate sensor is turned off. At this time, the Vivoactive HR is also NOT compatible with the Garmin Swim / Tri heart rate straps.

Bugs & Early Issues:

One of the biggest early issues I have been experiencing is related to the Bluetooth connectivity. I have been having a difficult time getting the watch to connect to my phone. The process typically involves turning off the Bluetooth on both devices, restarting both devices, and then activating the Bluetooth on my phone first and then turning it on again on the Vivoactive HR. While this seems to solve the problem most of the time, the process sometimes takes multiple tries and this whole thing is cumbersome and a pain. I remember having some Bluetooth issues after the release of the last years model and they were eventually solved with a software update. Hopefully that can solve the issue.

Others have been reporting random crashes, the watch freezing or not responding to touch, calorie burn calculations being extremely high, issues with sleep tracking, and issues with the floor count. The only one I can attest to is the problem with floor counts. If I climb up three flights of stairs, I often only receive credit for two floors. Additionally, my flight of stairs for my basement has not been counting.  They may not be steep enough or long enough to count.

Specifications:

For more specific information regarding the Vivoactive HR, please visit Garmin and click on the ‘Specs’ tab.

 

I hope you have enjoyed this review and if you’ve made it this far, congratulations for not giving up! I would really appreciate some comments regarding your thoughts on this review and what questions you have. You can also check out my other Garmin Vivoactive videos on YouTube below. 

 

SLS3 Plantar Fasciitis Compression Sleeves Review

This post is sponsored by SLS3. We were provided with compression sleeves to try for review purposes and no other compensation was received. As usual, all thoughts and opinions are our own!

Welcome back to Tale of 2 Halfs today for a review of the SLS3 Plantar Fasciitis Compression Sleeves.

SLS3 is a wonderful company founded in 2004 by two former German Triathletes. SLS3 believes in products made in the USA, creating and sustaining jobs, keeping their carbon footprint small, and supporting other small businesses and events (such as our Piece by Piece 5K) through partnerships. Each item they produce is carefully developed from scratch, tested by them as well as some our their brand ambassadors and SLS3 Racing Team members, and as they say “if deemed awesome,” put into production.

I was given another opportunity to try out and review for you the newest compression sleeves from SLS3. This review has been a long time in the making and I’m very happy with the extensive use I have put these through. I hope that you will be able to take my insight and put these sleeves to good use for you.71FduliIrNL._SX425_

The SLS3 Plantar Fasciitis Compression Sleeves are designed to relieve the pain and discomfort caused by Plantar Fasciitis. However, these compression sleeves are not only for those suffering from plantar pain (I do not currently suffer) and are beneficial to those looking to speed up their recovery from activities by increasing blood flow and reducing swelling. First, here are some specifics regarding these sleeves straight from SLS3:

GRADUATED COMPRESSION
The sleeves are designed to provide targeted compression to relieve the pain and discomfort related to plantar fasciitis, achilles tendon and stress fractures, while offering support and improved circulation.

The Sleeves are available in 3 different sizes for a non-slip, comfortable fit, offering excellent heel and arch support.

BENEFITS OF COMPRESSION FOOT SLEEVES
✔ Gives you more relaxed feet and a painless day
✔ Helps you recover quickly after an excessive exertion
✔ Helps relieve pain from heel spurs and plantar fasciitis
✔ Helps maintain balance by adjusting your feet on uneven surfaces
✔ Interchangeable – wear it on left or right foot
✔ Affordable solution to strengthen and support the arch

Now, my opinion of the sleeves. Overall, the socks truly are extremely comfortable to wear all day long. The material is light, moisture wicking, and breathable. It allows you to easily wear normal socks over-top all day long without noticing and without discomfort. As with all compression sleeves/socks, sizing is important and for myself (8.5 street shoe/9.5 running shoe) I choose a medium size. I found the size advertised by SLS3 is accurate and fit comfortably. The sleeves offer graduated compression with more support over the arch and heel and less compression around the toes and ankles – another reason their very comfortable all day long.

I used the sleeves almost entirely for recovery purposes. After 8 – 12 hours (often overnight) of wearing the sleeves after long runs varying between 12 – 20 miles my feet felt relaxed, were less swollen, and I had less residual pain from the demands of running in my arches and heels the following day(s). I also wore them regularly with my work boots as they do not provide the best support during my long 10-hour shifts. I did not like wearing the Plantar Fasciitis Compression Sleeves during my runs. From my knowledge these are not designed for that purpose, but I thought I would still test it out. During a run, your feet swell substantially and this caused the sleeves to become tight and uncomfortable.

I own many SLS3 compression products that I use regularly, but found that these Plantar Fasciitis Compression Sleeves used in conjunction with the FXC Compression Sleeves were the perfect combination for my recovery – of course, your individual preferences may vary.

Currently, SLS3 is running a special on Amazon for only $19.90 (Reg. $39.90) for a pair. If you are training hard and your feet are sore, if you are struggling with injuries to your Achilles or have developed stress fractures – I would recommend that you give a pair a try.

*Note: I do not now nor have I ever possessed a medical degree. By evaluating and recommending this product, I do not claim that it will solve your medical problem/condition. I would advise you consult with your doctor or physical therapist if you are suffering and in pain.*

 

 

SLS3 Dual Pocket Running Belt + Giveaway!

Usually when we’re out on long runs there is always some extra gear that needs to be carried along- phone, fuel, ID, keys etc. The question is how to carry everything with while not feeling like a pack mule at the same time. We’ve both tried several belts in the past and while they’ve worked for us there’s usually something we’d like to change about them be it pocket size or fit.

We were recently sent a Dual Pocket Run Belt from SLS3 to give a try. So far, we’re pretty impressed! We haven’t had the opportunity to use it at a race yet but here’s what we love so far:

-There are two pockets on this belt making it easy to organize your stuff. Things like your phone, ID, and cash can go in one pocket while the other pocket can be used for the things you’ll actually need during your run or race like fuel or chapstick. This way you don’t risk losing important items while pulling out fuel during a run.

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-Though they look small, the pockets are really good sized! My main issue with the belt I was using previously was that after upgrading to an iPhone 6 from the iPhone 5 my phone would no longer fit leaving me nowhere to carry it. Travis’ Samsung Galaxy S6 fits as well while still leaving plenty of room for other items.

-The pockets are polyurethane lined meaning you don’t have to worry about your items getting damaged from sweat or rain. Not only are the pockets water resistant but the zipper is as well so there won’t be any moisture coming in through the zipper.

 -The elastic on the back of this belt measures 1.5 inches and is adjustable to fit waists/hips 24″ to 38″

-It stays put! I like to wear it on my hips rather than my waist and I haven’t noticed any bouncing or wiggling so far. I do like to rotate it a bit so that my phone sits more on the side of my hip and the second pocket is in the front center rather than both pockets in the front but that’s personal preference. The fit is comfortable- it’s tight enough to where it stays put but doesn’t feel too tight. There’s nothing more irritating when you’re running than having to constantly adjust where a belt is sitting so I was really pleased that this one doesn’t budge.

 -My belt is all black but it also comes in other colors: blue, purple and lime green

SLS3 has offered our readers a chance to win one of the Dual Pocket Run Belts! Click on the Rafflecopter link to enter!

If you don’t want to wait for the giveaway to end, you can also check out SLS3 on Amazon! For a limited time the belt is on sale of $12.90 (57%off of the retail price of $29.90)

What items do you have to carry with you on a run?

The Benefits Of Compression + Giveaway!

This post is sponsored by SLS3. We were provided with compression sleeves to try for review purposes and no other compensation was received. As usual, all thoughts and opinions are our own!

Anybody that has trained for an endurance event such as a marathon or half-marathon knows how essential muscle recovery is for performance. Proper recovery allows muscle tissue to rebuild following tough workouts.

Compression can help your legs in several ways by increasing blood flow. When you’re wearing compression on your legs your muscles are squeezed which increases blood flow to your heart. The blood flow away from the legs also helps to remove waste and toxins from your legs.

SLS3 is a company owned by two German pro triathletes. They produce triathlon gear such as wet suits, shorts and tops as well as compression socks, sleeves and shorts. From their website:
SLS3 FXC compression sleeves boost bloodflow by about 34%. This increases oxygen delivery to the working muscles to enhance their performance. The circulation improvements also help the body eliminate metabolic waste products like lactic acid more easily.

The combination of these effects allows you to work longer and harder, delaying the onset of fatigue.

Features:
• 20-30 mmHG of graduated compression
• Seamless TekWeb technology
• Muscle Stability
• Increased Bloodflow
• Cooling effect and UV protection

We were given an opportunity to try out their compression sleeves and are totally in love. We’ve had the compression sleeves for close to a month now which has given us ample time to test them out and shape our opinions.

First impression after trying these on were how tight they were. The difference between SLS3 and other brands we own was drastic. Many brands advertise compression products such as socks, that when tried on, feel no different than a knee-high pair of tube socks. With SLS3, we truly loved how snug they were. The sleeves were comfortable, did not cause itching or irritation and stayed in place through difficult workouts.

Travis did a ton of running in his pair of sleeves during the final weeks of training for the Chicago Marathon. He had only used compression in the past for strictly recovery after a run, but he instantly felt a difference. He was so impressed with how his calves felt while running that he decided he was going to wear them during the Chicago Marathon. He suffered major cramping in his legs during the race from miles 22-26. The only muscle in his legs that did not cramp – his calves. He plans to continue to use them on any run stretching more than an hour.
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While I haven’t been running nearly as much or as long as Travis has been, I’ve still been managing to sneak in some runs when time allows. I’ve been wearing the sleeves for recovery purposes. After a run I put the sleeves on before I go to sleep and wear them overnight. I wake up in the morning and my calves feel great! My calves are always the first place I feel tightness after a workout so I love having the ability to take away that soreness easily. Now that Travis is just about done with his racing season my runs will ramp back up again and I plan on using the SLS3 sleeves frequently!

We opted to try their sleeves versus the full sock. This was done for a specific reason. We are both very particular with what we wear on our feet while training and racing. With Chicago being so close we did not want to risk un-necessary blisters, hot spots, etc. I state this fact to highlight no fault to SLS3 but rather to be clear with our readers our personal views on equipment.

Using the sleeves rather than the socks allowed us to continue training close to a big race while introducing a new product and reaping a benefit from the product.

There are a wide variety of color options for both the socks and sleeves as well as a patterned version as well! Be sure to check them out!

The folks at SLS3 are allowing us to give away a pair of compression socks or sleeves to one lucky reader. For entry, please click here. SLS3 has also given us a code to share that will get you 40% off of your purchase! To take advantage please visit their website at SLSTri.com and at checkout, enter MRTT40.

What color socks/sleeves would you choose?

Soleus GPS Turbo Running Watch Review

This post is sponsored by Soleus Running. We received a Soleus GPS Turbo for review purposes and no further compensation was received. Though this is a sponsored post, all thoughts and ideas are our own.

Good morning everyone!!

Recently, we were given an amazing opportunity for our blog to try out and review the new Soleus GPS Turbo running watch. This is our first review and we wanted to make sure we did it justice. We have taken our time, with the company’s permission, to really test out the watch and all of it’s features.

Soleus is a company based in Austin, Texas and is made up of a team of passionate athletes looking to put out quality products that will enhance workouts with important features. A few of their elite athletes include Kara Goucher,  Nick Symmonds, and Alysia Montano.

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Here’s the description of the GPS Turbo straight from Soleus

Every Day is a New Run.

Every day is a new run with GPS Turbo. Meet your training goals with the features packed GPS Turbo – 8 hours of GPS battery life, 6 interval training sessions, auto pause detection, Pace Partner, vibration alerts, 3 lines of customizable data, 5 programmable alarms, automatic lap splits, and 100-lap memory (just to name a few).

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Let’s take a look at some of the features the Turbo offers, shall we?

GPS: As this is a GPS watch, how’s the GPS? This is the only part of this review where we’ll compare to other products on the market.
I personally appreciated how quickly the GPS signal was found. It takes roughly 20 seconds and I can be on my way. I can’t stand having to sit around waiting for a GPS signal to appear!

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After tracking a month’s worth of runs, the GPS is accurate. We wore three GPS watches during this timeframe, and all three watches were within .01 – .03 miles of each other. I consider this discrepancy to be very minimal in the grand scheme of a watches usefulness.

Interval Training: You can program 6 different time intervals into the Turbo. When each timer reaches zero the watch will chime and the next segment begins. There is a 50 loop cycle for all intervals. This is a great feature for speed work or for those who use walk/run intervals!

Auto Pause: The watch is equipped with this optional feature that will automatically pause your workout if it senses that you stopped moving. No more forgetting to hit pause and throwing off your data! This is especially helpful when running in areas that require frequent stops. Once the GPS alerts that you’ve resumed forward motion your run is automatically started again not requiring the runner to touch any buttons.

Pace Partner/Alerts: Probably my favorite feature on the watch, Pace Partner allows you to set a pace range that you would like to maintain during your run. During the run if you go outside of the pre-set pace then pace alerts will give you a chime to let you know. I can’t tell you how many times I look down at my watch during a run to make sure I’m staying on pace. This completely eliminates that!

Customizable Data Fields: You are able to choose what you want to see on your display. Options include: pace, distance, total time or lap time.

Some of the watches other features include:

-Calories burned

-Indoor chronograph

-Backlight with night mode

-8 hour GPS battery life

-Rechargeable battery

-30M water resistant

-Includes data cable for syncing

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We’ve been wearing the Turbo on our runs for a month, and overall we’re really happy with it. Initially, I’ll admit that we had some difficulties setting up the watch. The full instructional manual is available online, while the package only includes a quick start guide which could be a bit more detailed. There are setup videos online, which were very helpful!

The band on this watch is AWESOME. It’s soft, flexible and comfortable – by far my favorite band out of any wearable device that I’ve owned. It is lightweight and sits comfortably on the wrist. The notch on the end of the strap prevents the clasp from coming undone.

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Soleus GPS watches sync with Strava through a downloadable sync manager. In the Strava dashboard you can see all of the data from your runs including elevation and pace charts. You can also connect with other users to view their workouts as well. Once your workouts are uploaded they can also be viewed via the Strava app. There is the option to purchase a premium membership to access more data as well. Its worth noting that runs done using the indoor chronograph will not upload via the sync manager – only runs with GPS enabled upload.

At a price point of $129 the Soleus GPS Turbo is an great example showing that you can get quality features without a high price point.

What is one feature that’s a must have in a running watch for you? Do you prefer all the bells and whistles or just the basics?

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