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Item # GRM005L

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Item # GRM005L

Overachiever.

Like an overbearing helicopter parent never content with their child's achievements, Garmin is seldom satisfied with its products for long. Continuously striving for improvement, the brand decided to add a newer, shinier member to its Forerunner family that's bound to inspire jealousy among its older, simpler siblings. With a wrist-based heart rate monitor, smart phone notifications, a host of run features, and a built-in activity tracker, the Forerunner 235 is destined to be the new favorite child — a distinction we expect it to hold onto.

We should say that if you're among the set of runners who has never seen reason to depart from a simple wristwatch with a timer, or even run with a watch at all, the Forerunner 235 is probably not for you. However, if training with data is your thing, the amount of information the Forerunner 235 is capable of delivering in a clear, navigable manner is impressive, to say the least. You'll gain access to the types of metrics you'd expect from a Garmin watch, including distance, heart rate via a strap or the optical heart rate sensor at the wrist, pace, and estimated V02 max. A built-in accelerometer guarantees the watch will have full functionality during indoor track or treadmill workouts, and if you choose to upload your workouts to Garmin Connect, you'll be able to track your progress and gain access to Garmin's detailed training plans.

Departing from the features that have become standard on fitness watches, Garmin enabled the Forerunner 235 to receive smartphone notifications directly to its full-color touchscreen. Addressing the explosive popularity of fitness trackers, Garmin also added all-day tracking capabilities to the Forerunner 235. So, in addition to tracking your run data, the watch can be set to keep track of the total steps you've traveled and calories burned throughout the day — it will even remind you to stand up if you've been sitting for more than an hour at a time. Overachiever, indeed.

  • Wrist-based heart rate monitor
  • Displays pace, time, distance, calories, and estimated V02 max
  • Smartphone notifications
  • Full-color touchscreen

Tech Specs

Heart Rate Monitor:
yes, Elevate technology
Wireless:
yes
Clock:
yes
Battery Type:
lithium ion
Recommended Use:
running
Manufacturer Warranty:
1 year

Reviews & Community

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Nice features!!

  • Familiarity: I've used it several times

The FR225 is an advance running watch. I would recommend it for runners is great to improve running abilities. this watch has all the features that I need and some more.Is extremely light weight. The band is flexible, soft and the color is pretty cool and feels good on my wrist. Also it communicates with my phone so I use it not only for running. The con the HR functions, they are not perfect , it works well-at times. HR data that is captured is not smooth; rather, it is erratic at times with "jumps" in HR values over time.

Unanswered Question

Garmin 235: Does it have the ability to show bike cadence, power? Wireless quark power meter

Never taking this off!

  • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Well unless it needs to be charged of course. I frickin love this watch! I've always just used the Forerunner 25 because I liked the simplicity and didn't think I wanted all the features of the 235 but turns out I love all the features. I also thought it was kind of big but turns out I like that too. For running I have it set to time, distance and pace which is all I really want to see. I'm sure there are a million more capabilities I could be taking advantage of but time and pace are all I really care about. I wear it all the time and outside of running I can see my daily steps which is kind of fun. I also like how much storage is has compared to the 25. I can save weeks worth of runs versus just 7 days. I'm still not very good at using the app but it I have synced it a couple of times now and it is cool to see my daily runs, daily steps and how long I slept. The battery life is great too. I charge it maybe every 3-4 days and I run 5-8 miles per day. I also NEVER take it off, like for real I wear it in the shower and the pool and I've banged it on everything and it's totally fine!

Never taking this off!

Awesome

  • Familiarity: I've used it several times

Got one of these a week ago, and have been liking it more and more. The low profile design and light weight are fantastic features for running; you put it one and hardly remember it's on your wrist. The heart rate sensor seems accurate enough for getting a basic picture of how hard you're working. Having multiple data screens that can be set up with whatever information you like is really nice for tracking your runs, and it's easy to scroll from one screen to the next while on the go. I was quite surprised at how much I like the Garmin Connect mobile app, as well. It's well done, and provides a nice simple presentation of all your metrics. Finally, the smart phone notifications are pretty nice--definitely not why I bought the watch, but I've found them to be a nice bonus!

Great for Activities

    I liked this watch so much I bought 2. I had gotten one for my fiancé which I started using, a lot, so we got a second. It is a great watch that allows you to track more activities than just running. The only downfall to the watch is the built-in wrist heart rate monitor. I don't think it reads heart rate as accurately as having the chest monitor. Very happy with it.

    Wrist based HR is not there yet

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    Garmin did as good as possible with what seems like a not-yet-mature technology. In my experience, measuring HR from the wrist only works in a limited range.

    You must exercise for 10-15 minutes and get warm enough to sweat before the reading is accurate
    If you change your pace, cadence, or exertion the reading is not accurate. It seems especially dependent on cadence. When I switch from uphill to downhill running the watch typically shows a higher HR, which is false.
    If your hands are above your heart (ie climbing) it is not accurate.

    I wanted to avoid a chest strap, but that seems to be the only way to get a reliable HR measurement

    Avg. ride time: 15m per week
    • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

    Great Upgrade to older Forerunners

    • Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share

    "I wanted to replace my Forerunner 205 with something that could act as both a GPS watch and a fitness tracker. I looked at several FitBit models, but after reading and watching several reviews, I decided that the Forerunner 235 had everything I was looking for and more. The GPS tracking works well and is intuitive to setup and use. The tracking for steps and heart rate also works great and gives me a good sense of if I've been active enough for the day. One of my favorite features of the watch is the smartphone notifications. I'm not interested in a full on smartwatch, so just being able to see who is calling or texting is perfect. You can't respond from the watch, but it's still nice to be able to know who is trying to reach you. I also love that I can customize it through the IQ store and have downloaded a new watch face that I liked better than the default one. Overall, this has been a great upgrade from my old GPS watch and gives me the functionality of a fitness tracker and some of the conveniences of a smartwatch."

    Fantastic watch

    • Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share

    My fiance uses this watch everyday. She loves the different modes that can be used so it is not running specific, great for biking, hiking, etc. Her two favorite features are the built-in hear rate monitor and the pedometer.

    Great for biking

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

    Although this watch is designed for running, it also works really well for biking.

    Pros:
    -Simple to use.
    -GPS enabled - includes speed (max, min, avg) and altimeter
    -Connect IQ app is really easy to use - allows smartphone notifications on your watch.
    -Pedometer
    -Built in HR monitor

    Cons - HR monitor protrudes from back of watch, can be slightly uncomfortable if watch is on tight.

    Great watch

    • Familiarity: I gave it as a gift but have feedback to share

    I got this for my fiancé. She loves it because it is able to track other activities than running. The built-in writs heart rate monitor is awesome!

    Avg. ride time: 3h 37m per week
    • Average ride time is based on Strava activity over the last 3 months. Give your reviews credibility by connecting your account.

    Just a few tweaks away from perfect!

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: One size

    I bought this watch in the USA to use in my country: Costa Rica, central America. My older watch was a Garmin FR70, so you could imagine how big the improvement was.

    The design, size and material are just right for me. Solid black and lightweight.

    From the beginning the functions, display and configuration very straight forward.

    My favorite feature is the built in HR sensor. No need for additional straps or accesories. Eventhough I not completely sure how accurate it is during my cycling training sessions. Sometimes the monitor seems to be erratic. Nothing mayor to worry about it.

    The only problems I had is sometimes the pairing with my mobile Garmin Connect have some issues, and date/time misconfigures because it lost the gps connection.

    So, if Garmin manage to update the software of the watch and Connect App I´m sure this is the perfect sport watch.

    Highly recommend it.







    Just a few tweaks away from perfect!

    The future of HRM

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times

    I've had multiple HR monitors, from Suunto, Timex, and Garmin. I'm also a personal trainer and coach for cyclists and triathletes so I have a pretty good idea what makes a good HRM. And I have small wrists, so the bulky wrist computers are out of the question. Simply put, I can't believe Garmin is able to cram this much function inside a package so small and LIGHT. It does more than I expected, it's lighter than I expected. It's as small and inconspicuous as my Suunto, but has the added benefit of NO SEPARATE CHEST STRAP, among several other things, and it works. In fact it works perfectly.

    Menus are quick to access and intuitive. No manual needed for anyone relatively tech-savvy. Elevation, speed, distance, location, maps, heart rate are all accurate. VERY accurate. I get weather forecasts and notifications from my phone (when paired and the phone is on.) Battery life appears to be more than enough for an epic event with constant GPS and HR monitoring, so ultra-distance adventure athletes will be covered. Everyone else can go several days between charges, using only certain functions when needed. "Several days" might not sound like very long battery life for those used to older models. Keep in mind those had a second battery in the strap, and you only turned on HR during workouts. This thing is constantly monitoring while on, and can be put to sleep or powered off for times you want to go longer between charges.

    My new favorite training tool and top recommended HR monitor for those who need the functions of heart rate, speed, distance, and time data, and know what to do with it.