The Garmin Forerunner range is one of the most acclaimed sports watch collections around. It may be intended for runners, but don’t let this detail put you off. Forerunners can track other activities too and also incorporate a wealth of additional smart features.
Here’s a quick overview of the current Garmin Forerunner watches.
The best choice for beginners
Perhaps the simplest Garmin Forerunner, the 35 is an easy-to-use GPS-enabled running watch designed to focus on your performance. It monitors the key metrics of your training, including distance, calories, pace, and more.
Useful features such as Auto Pause and run/walk mode enhance versatility, while the wrist-based heart rate makes it possible to monitor performance without a chest strap.
Though the Forerunner offers a range of sports modes, users must note that this is not a swimming-compatible watch. Though it is waterproof to 5ATM, you can’t track any swimming activity.
Pair it with a compatible smartphone to get call and text alerts on your wrist, or make automatic uploads to Garmin Connect, share your progress, join challenges, or receive insights as you meet your goals.
Simple and unpretentious, the Forerunner 35 is an excellent choice for those who want a no-frills running watch at an affordable price.
Ideal for teammates
The upgraded version of Forerunner 35, the Forerunner 45, comes with additional features, and it’s a great choice for team training.
It comes in two variants, the Forerunner 45 and the smaller 45 S that is an excellent choice for slender wrists. No matter which size you choose, you’ll get accurate tracking of your pace and distance thanks to the built-in GPS.
The integration of Garmin Coach adaptive training plans makes it excellent for newbies who want to focus on performance. Like the Forerunner 35, it also integrates wrist heart rate monitoring.
The forerunner 45 offers a range of sports modes, including the ability to track swimming and cycling too. This watch can even connect to third party apps, like Strava, so users can record their fitness data on multiple platforms.
If you like to listen to music while you run, the 45 is here to help. This wearable can connect to your smartphone and control your music whilst you’re on a run.
Customizable watch faces and a variety of bands enhance its versatility and make it a great choice for users of either sex.
Perfect for your running hobby
The Forerunner 55 offers competitive sports features and health trackers, yet sits under $200. If you’re ready to level up your running experience without spending lots on an expensive smartwatch – this is the wearable for you.
Garmin added expert features to this model, many of these were taken from some of their more advanced options. Key updated creatures include an increased battery life (approx 20 hours), virtual running, HIIT sports modes, cadence sensors, and PacePro. This watch also features classic Forerunner features such as heart rate monitoring, distance, and GPS signals too.
Compared to the Forerunner 45, the 55 comes in two different casing sizes. When you select this watch you have the choice of a 39mm or a 42mm, whereas in the past you would only find a 42mm watch. The general design is the same, but this sleek look didn’t need updating.
A premier sports watch designed for serious runners
With the Forerunner 255, tracking performance has never been easier. It’s a great choice for those who like to listen to music while running and packs loads of features in as well.
The menus might not be the easiest to navigate, but it’s easy to love once you get used to how it works. Designed with the pros in mind, it tracks and evaluates your performance stats, including aerobic and anaerobic training effects, VO2 max, training status, and more.
Some of the sports modes on this watch include hiking, skiing, and even golfing too. Users also love using the Forerunner 255 to record their pool swimming workouts – but remember to note that the watch isn’t diving compatible.
Advanced tracking includes running dynamics, such as ground contact time and stride length. On-board music storage and integrated GPS are two other awesome features for those who don’t want to carry a smartphone or other device when training.
Forerunner 645 Music
The more stylish and feature-packed version of the Forerunner 245
If you like the 245 Music and don’t mind spending more money, the Forerunner 645 Music could be a great choice. It has everything the 245 has and more.
The device can store up to 500 songs and sync your playlists from music streaming services such as Spotify or Pandora. Wrist heart rate monitoring and advanced running performance metrics don’t bring noticeable improvements compared to the 245, but it shines in the smart features department.
You’ll get Garmin Pay, so you don’t have to worry about carrying your wallet, as well as other connected features and a bunch of smart notifications on your wrist, including Live Track function.
Customizable watch faces and compatibility with apps such as AccuWeather, Uber, and SmartThings bring further value for money, making this smartwatch one of the best running watches you can find.
A top-notch triathlon smartwatch
Designed for running and packed with preloaded sports profiles. The 735XT is one of the pro watches in the Forerunner family.
It includes all the features of other models in the range. It tracks distance, pace, and lap time on all supported activities, and you can choose which metrics to view on the display while training.
An array of smart features are the cherries on top of this sumptuous cake and include Strava live segments, phone syncing, smart notifications, and compatibility with music streaming services. While all these features don’t come cheap, this is undoubtedly a very capable multi-sports watch and one that’s particularly suitable for triathlon training.
An all-round sports watch for advanced athletic training
The Forerunner 955 is la crème de la crème of the family. It’s an all-around sports watch designed for professional runners, triathlon athletes, and serious fitness lovers.
Its slim and sleek profile retains the lines of the other Forerunner watches and fits both men and women. Two band choices and customizable watch faces add versatility, while a variety of features and compatible apps make it a winner.
Bigger storage capacity compared to the 255 and 645 variants let you keep up to 1,000 songs on your wrist and sync your playlists from Spotify and other music streaming services.
An integrated GPS and VO2 max feature tracks your training and adjust the results based on heat and altitude. At the same time, the watch also monitors your overall training load and recovery time.
In smartwatch mode1, you’ll get a comprehensive picture of your health, from sleep to exercise, for up to 20 days of battery life. When using GPS in solar charging mode, you may achieve up to 49 hours of battery life.
Like the 735XT, it comes with multi-sports profiles, while pre-loaded, full-color maps keep you on track regardless of how familiar you are with the area. Other highlights include safety and tracking features, smart notifications, as well as Garmin Pay function.
Use the new touchscreen to navigate stats and maps.
Full-color maps and multi-band GPS let you run any route with confidence.
When it comes to training preparedness, you’ll know when you’re ready for a successful session.
To help you prepare, the race widget includes a schedule of suggested exercises, maps of the course, and more.
What Is The Best Garmin Forerunner?
When it comes to choosing the best Forerunner watch, you often have to consider what your needs are. For example, the best budget forerunner is the 55. This is because the Forerunner 55 model is affordable and entry-level, yet its features are still competitive. With a range of GPS, health, and sports tracking elements, you can bang for your buck when you purchase this product.
On the other hand, if you are looking for an advanced running watch, you might be better suited to the Forerunner 245 Music. This popular watch is ideal for any intermediate runners. With training feedback, recovery time, and health metrics, this companion improves your training and your health. Also, it has wireless music syncing, making sure you never run without your tunes.
Which Is The Newest Forerunner Model?
The latest forerunner release is the Forerunner 955. This smartwatch is perfect for any serious runners, plus, it also offers extra features to compliment your everyday lifestyle. This is an ideal watch for those that run daily or to a high level, so if you’re a beginner you might want to try a different watch.
Key Forerunner 955 benefits include:
- Accurate fitness metrics
- Heart rate and other health features
- GPS service
- Maps are presented in color
- Long battery life and solar options
Is The Garmin 255 Worth it?
There’s a lot of hype surrounding the Forerunner 255, but is it worth it?
Yes, this watch is absolutely worth the hype! When you invest in a Forerunner 255 you won’t be disappointed. This watch is great for anyone dedicated to running and fitness, plus Garmin is a reliable brand. The 255 model mixes high-quality materials and advanced technology to make sure you have the best smartwatch experience.
Each day, your morning report will provide you with a summary of your sleep, HRV, and workouts for the previous day.
Up to 14 days of smartwatch mode battery life and 30 hours of GPS mode battery life.
An integrated triathlon feature and over 30 activity profiles allow you to push your limits.
On the race widget, you may plan your strategy with daily exercises, route details, and more.
To achieve your fitness objectives, make use of a comprehensive set of sophisticated metrics and training tools.
Garmin Pay contactless payments can be used too!
Want to know more about the Forerunner 255 watch? Explore our full review here.
Where to buy Garmin Forerunners (US)?
Interested in owning a Garmin Forerunner? There are a range of different outlets to buy your next wearable from. Popular options include the Garmin website, Amazon, Walmart, and more. You can also find second hand wearables on resale sites like eBay, perfect for those who don’t want to pay a premium for a brand new watch.
Check out the most common questions about the Forerunner range here.
Which Garmin Forerunner has a touch screen?
Touchscreens are a popular smartwatch feature, but which Forerunner actually offers this service? Many of the watches in question operate via buttons, so if you want a touchscreen try the Garmin Forerunner 620. This version offers a color touchscreen, plus GPS, running metrics, and a sleek design.
Which Garmin Forerunner has music?
If music is a key smartwatch element for you, make sure you purchase the “music” version of the 245 watch. The Garmin Forerunner 245 allows music playback and you can download up to 500 tracks (or 3.5GB worth of music). If you can’t run without music, this is the Forerunner for you.
Which Garmin Forerunner has an altimeter?
Want to track your elevation as you run? The Garmin Forerunner 645 should be your next companion. This watch offers a barometric altimeter that keeps count of your elevation whilst you’re on the move. Perfect for anyone going on hikes too.
Which Garmin Forerunner has maps?
Are you interested in mapping your running routes out? GPS and map settings are key features for you. Within the Forerunner range, you should explore the Garmin Forerunner 945 as this model offers the most sophisticated mapping services. On this watch you access quick routes, previous maps, and you can sync your favorite routes via Garmin Connect. This also makes it a great garmin forerunner for hiking.
Which Garmin Forerunner can be used without a phone?
Running with a smartwatch and phone isn’t ideal, especially if you have to hold your phone whilst active. If you want to venture out with just a smartwatch, try the Forerunner 945 LTE. This option can connect to wireless networks and cellular data without the need of a smartphone. With this watch you’ll be able to make calls and receive messages even when your phone isn’t present.
Which Garmin Forerunners are waterproof?
When it comes to waterproofing, all Garmin Forerunner models are waterproof to 5ATM (or can be submerged up to 50 meters deep). While not all of the watches offer swimming tracking, they can join you in the pool for a quick dip. It’s advised that you don’t keep these watches wet for over 30 minutes as they can become damaged after long periods underwater. Find out more about smartwatch waterproofing here.
Which is the best Garmin Forerunner for ladies?
Though all Forerunners are great for ladies, the Forerunner 245 is a popular choice for women. This watch offers the usual high-quality health and fitness feature, plus additional menstrual health tracking too. This additional feature allows women to gain a clear snapshot of their health, showing how exercise can affect their menstrual cycle.
Which is the best Garmin Forerunner for small wrists?
All of the Forerunner watches provide flexible straps that can adjust to different wrist sizes. However, if you want a Forerunner that will compliment your smaller arms, then you might want to opt for a Forerunner 55 as this comes in two size options. If you want a smaller watch, opt for the 39mm size and this will keep the wearable in proportion with your body. Learn more about choosing the right watch size here.
Whether you’re an enthusiastic beginner or a professional athlete, finding the right smartwatch for you in the Garmin Forerunner family is easy.
So, what do you say? Which one would you pick? Tell me in a comment below; I’d love to hear from you.
And if you know other runners or athletes looking for the perfect Garmin wearable, don’t forget to share this article with them too.
Last Updated on July 19, 2022