So you’re here looking for men’s running watches? Good! One of the most important purchases after a pair of running shoes is a running watch for monitoring distance and pace.
Today’s watches can do more than count the miles and inform you that your last run was 30 seconds faster. In fact, they’ll now design personalized workouts, construct color maps on the go, boost your motivational Spotify training playlists, and more.
When the run is over, the functionality continues: Sleep, heart rate fluctuations, and other health indicators may all be tracked with most contemporary running watches. Runners who like a simple interface and don’t need their data supplied with the works may choose a more minimalist watch.
Check out the short evaluations below of five of our favorite running watches, ranging from basic GPS trackers to high-end versions that act as a virtual computer on your wrist, then scroll down for more information and complete reviews on those models, as well as additional top picks.
What Makes These Men’s Running Watches Any Good?
The best running watches for men have many of the same characteristics as the greatest running watches in general: They’re precise, long-lasting, dependable, easy to use, and come with a slew of extra features at a fantastic price. After you’ve checked all of those boxes, it’s generally a matter of size and style, with a dash of personal taste tossed in.
Some have characteristics that appeal to men’s health concerns: The Apple Watch Series 6 and 7 have an electrocardiogram feature that may identify potential cardiac abnormalities, which can be hazardous for males, who are more susceptible to heart disease. We collected evaluations and comments from our male colleagues to compile this list of the best running watches for their ultra-functionality and long battery life.
Here’s what we think are the best men’s running watches.
Apple Watch Series 7
Though Apple Watches aren’t always thought of as specialized running watches, the Series 7 model contains some premium fitness features that are great for any runner. If you’re looking for a running watch that also features a full range of smartwatch services, consider investing in the Apple Watch Series 7.
The Series 7 watch has features that measure your bloody oxygen level through a sensor and app. Users can also take an ECG anywhere and can check their heart rate whenever needed. These health insights are vital when keeping on track of your fitness.
You can also access a range of workouts via the Apple Watch. Whether you want fitness inspiration or a way to track your running statistics, this watch is ready to help you meet your goals. The watch also contains an activity rings feature to promote everyday movement and create motivation for running.
Find our full review of this new watch here to learn about all of the other smartwatch features on this premium watch.
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Polar Grit X
Polar’s Grit X is a more compact choice to smaller rivals like the Garmin Fenix 6 and Suunto 9 if you’re after a running watch with outstanding navigation. In normal GPS mode, you’ll get 40 hours of battery life, but you can extend that time to 100 hours by lowering tracking frequency. It pings your position every 120 seconds in this mode, and all unnecessary sensors are turned off, again much like the Fenix and Suunto 9. Though this isn’t very helpful for runners in most instances, it will get you through severe ultras and multi-day treks without the need for an additional battery pack. Hill Splitter is another useful tool for runners traversing difficult terrain. This function recognizes when you begin rising or descending and displays the length of time you’ve been running the incline or drop, as well as how steep it is.
We think this is a superb first contender in the list of the best men’s running watches.
Garmin Forerunner 945
Guys, you cannot go wrong with Garmin’s Lexus running watch that performs virtually every function a smartwatch can provide. The Garmin 945 has a small size (50g) that masks an extensive list of capabilities, including 1,000-song storage, contactless payments, and a barometric altimeter.
Plus extended battery life (14 days in wristwatch mode and 36 hours in GPS mode). As well as all key data features like heart rate, recovery time, and even more.
You may also use it to create a color map of your travels to avoid getting lost while exploring cities. This watch is an excellent way to wear a virtual training instructor on your wrist if you can afford it.
Anyone who runs often needs a food smartwatch to complement their workouts. One of the best watches on the market for the job is the Forerunner 55 from Garmin. This new and updated running watch is here to make your life easier.
To help improve your running, the watch includes built-in GPS to help you track your routes, distance, pace, and more. You can also get heart rate data and helpful alerts to let you know how your heart rate is when active or resting. These statistics are always updated in real-time to keep you in the loop.
The Forerunner 55 also features a “Garmin Coach”, this feature lets users create free training plans that are adapted to their needs. You can sync these unique workouts with the Garmin Connect app to stay on top of your fitness. The watch also provides daily recommendations based on your fitness information, perfect for dedicated runners.
With up to two weeks of battery life, this watch is always ready to go when you need to. No need to schedule your runs around charging, this watch can now last for longer even when GPS is running too.
Read our in-depth review of the Forerunner 55 here.
Garmin Forerunner 45
Do you want the bulk of the information provided by the Garmin 945 but without the hefty price tag? The 45 is a compact, stylish watch that has all of the functions that runners need. Training zone data, run tracking, heart rate graphs, and more are available for much less than the 945 prices.
The major drawbacks are the somewhat disappointing 13-hour GPS battery life, the absence of music streaming, and on-the-go mapping. However, for what it does do, such as smartphone notifications and GPS accuracy, it still has value for money.
Garmin Fenix 6
Looking for a Garmin running watch? The Fenix 6 range might be the perfect watch for you. While you can buy a Fenix 6, 6S, and 6X we’re going to focus on the Garmin Fenix 6. The Fenix 6 sits between the two alternative options, giving users the best of both worlds.
This watch is a medium-size smartwatch with a humble diameter of 42mm. This is ideal if you want a sleek running companion that isn’t too clunky on your wrist. The aesthetics and band of this watch were updated from the Fenix 5, making sure the watch is comfortable and lightweight.
When it comes to running, the Garmin Fenix 6 is well suited to the job. With accurate GPS tracking, adventure sports tracking, and high-performance trackers, this watch is here to help you get fitter. Whether you’re starting on your running journey or perhaps you are an advanced runner, either way, this watch will help you improve.
Other key features of the Fenix 6 watch include:
- Cycling and running modes.
- You can pair the watch with your smartphone for on-wrist messages and notifications.
- Uses pulse Ox and various heart rate monitors for accurate health data.
- Compatible with Garmin Pay.
- Can go up to 14 days without a charge (if GPS mode is off).
Interested in the Garmin Fenix 6? If you want to wait a little longer, the Fenix 7 will be released in 2022.
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Suunto 9 Peak
Suunto recently released a new professional sports watch, the Suunto 9 Peak, which is the company’s smallest and lightest device yet.
Although this steps away from what is a traditional design for a man, it’s what the people want. Similar brands like Polar and Garmin have also followed suit. This trend continues with the Suunto 9 Peak, which is around 36% thinner and lighter than the Suunto 9 Baro.
Suunto’s superior materials include less plastic and more metal than Polar’s watch, making it much slimmer but also heavier than the Ignite 2.
The Suunto 9 Peak is a high-end watch with a high price tag, available in titanium or stainless steel.
Garmin Forerunner 245 Music
Because it has Bluetooth streaming capability from Spotify (and others), the Forerunner 245 is a significant step forward over its predecessors for runners who want music or podcasts and don’t want to bring their smartphone.
The device has an improved heart rate monitor and map capabilities, such as the option to follow a pre-loaded route or go back to where you started.
All the features that were popular in the predecessors, the 230 and 235 remain. Such as smartphone notifications, step count, and sleep monitoring. Plus customized workouts and alarms, precise GPS, and more. The upgraded model’s main drawback is a reduced battery life of just six hours while utilizing GPS and audio streaming.
Coros Pace 2
The Coros Pace 2 is a fantastic mid-level sport watch with comparable specifications to the Garmin Forerunner 245. It’s a good improvement from a Fitbit to something a little more competent. Its lightweight and thin form, along with carefully crafted controls, make it ideal for smaller men’s wrists or activities that need flexibility.
With GPS backed by two additional satellite positioning systems, it also offers excellent location-tracking capabilities for runners, cyclists, and swimmers. While dedicated athletes may choose the higher-end Coros Apex, it is a great option for anybody looking for a reliable device to help them stay on track with their training.
Also a fashionable competitor to the Forerunner 245, with the added advantage of triathlon tracking and a little cheaper price tag. It also has excellent GPS accuracy. It can even compute your stride length so you can keep track of your cadence when running through a tunnel. And the ‘AI trainer’ will help you keep track of your training load. The screen might be brighter, but the Pace 2 is generally hard to criticize for the price.
Not many brands cater to tracking requirements like Suunto if you’re into running and endurance. Suunto watches are tough, durable, and multi-sport capable, making them ideal for taking on the great outdoors.
The Suunto 9 has one key feature that runners of all abilities pay attention to. And that’s a battery life that just goes on and on.
We know battery life is at the top of every runner’s priority list when it comes to running watches. While some devices, such as the Garmin Fenix 6 claim extended battery life (36 hours in GPS mode), this is usually accomplished by lowering the power settings and compromising GPS accuracy.
With Suunto, however, this is not the case. The Finnish brand says they have solved the issue, providing a watch with 120 hours of sports monitoring and sensor-assisted GPS tracking that is as precise as many complete GPS watches. That is, at least, the allegation.
This is a substantial timepiece. Large battery, big tough aesthetics, and a lengthy list of multi-sport capabilities that will outperform virtually any other watch on the run, bike, swim, or SUP. It’s pricey, and the software and design should be improved, but the Suunto 9’s incredible longevity outweighs all of those flaws.
Polar Vantage V2
One of the best multi-sport choices was Polar’s Vantage V. A lightweight and attractive watch introduced in 2018. And it was capable of tracking a range of activities and providing a variety of training load and recuperation information to help you plan your workouts.
The Vantage V range now has a new leader: more evolutionary than revolutionary, the Vantage V2 keeps the original’s recognizable appearance while enhancing many important elements of the multi-sport abilities.
This second-generation has been redesigned in aluminum to reduce the weight by 14g. Additionally, its waterproof rating is also better than the first. It has many new faces and can manage music on your phone.
It also has a larger battery and Komoot route assistance, hill splits, and smart fueling suggestions. Importantly, this comes at a much lower price than the Garmin Fenix 6. In reality, the Polar Grit X, which is comparably equipped but less expensive, is expected to be the Vantage V2’s fiercest competitor.
The Vantage V2 is obviously focused on sporting performance above smartwatch features, with only a few smart capabilities and a somewhat sluggish touchscreen experience.
The V2 can follow you through most sports, as with the Vantage V that was intended to go the distance in every discipline. The Polar Flow app may be used to load any 20 of the 130 specialized profiles onto the watch. Each mode includes data specific to the activity you’re performing, including running.
It contains some extensive tracking and training capabilities, as well as route assistance. You’ll also receive heart-rate data for each activity, as well as GPS route tracking if it’s an outside activity. As men’s running watches go, this one is a king.
Amazfit Bip S
The lightweight and compact Bip S offers value for money compared to the other men’s running watches here. Including a battery that lasts around 30 days on a full charge.
Also, it will capture multi-sport statistics and deliver basic notifications from your smartphone. Included too are basic stats regarding steps, heart rate, and sleep. It’s simple and straightforward to use, and despite being a fraction of the price. From a distance, it’s highly likely people will think you’re wearing an Apple Watch.
Speaking of which. You didn’t think we’d let a list go by without mentioning it, did you?
Apple Watch Series 6
The new Apple Watch 7 and Apple Watch Series 6 retain the design of the Apple Watch Series 4 and 5, which have been discontinued. In comparison to earlier models, it has a bigger display, smaller bezels, and rounder edges. A blood oxygen sensor and quicker charging are new this year. It also has the same standout features as before, such as an always-on display that is now brighter and a built-in compass.
The Apple Watch Series 6 is 20% quicker than the Series 5, thanks to its S6 64-bit dual-core processor. The Series 6 comes in 3 different finishes: aluminum, stainless steel, and titanium.
This Apple Watch model also has an electrocardiogram (ECG) sensor that may detect heart problems, including atrial fibrillation. There’s also built-in fall detection that alerts emergency contacts and services if you fall. Plus, there’s also a mic and speaker, which are excellent for taking calls.
It comes in 44mm and 40mm sizes, with GPS alone and GPS + Cellular options. The size of the display, the material of the case, and the kind of watch band all affect the price, which is arguably the only drawback.
The Series 6 new blue and red options are intriguing. In particular, the aluminum casing combines well with the brighter hues. Series 7 offers a bigger screen which is more edge-to-edge and 1mm bigger than its predecessor.
Garmin Instinct 2 Solar
This multisport smartwatch is gaining hype over the immense variety which it gives wearers. The Instinct 2 alone is available in several editions and two sizes, and you can get a Solar version of either their Instinct 2 Surf, Standard, or Tactical editions.
The Instinct 2 uses GPS, Galileo, and GLONASS to allow users to stay in range even in remote environments – perfect for any adventurous runners. This GPS data is paired with an ABC sensor to give weather, elevation, and compass data too. It is also paired with Garmin’s Safety Features, which can notify emergency contacts if you suffer a bad fall or need emergency assistance. This is especially helpful for men who like to run or hike alone!
Garmin Instinct 2 Solar also features Trackback Routing to enable safe return journeys, thus less stress while running. This takes you back to your starting point without any hesitation or interruptions.
For specific running features, the Instinct 2 offers a comprehensive list which can help amateur and professional runners alike in improving their distance, endurance, or stride.
If you’re looking for a more affordable smartwatch option, try the Polar M430. This is a perfect smartwatch for runners as it contains heart rate monitors, running features, and a sleek design.
The running program on the Polar M430 allows users to train for certain events with a unique training program in the Polar Flow. Four targets are available, including a 5K run, a 10K run, a half-marathon, and a marathon. Users can also use GPS systems to track their pace, altitude, distance, and route.
The watch also contains a running index to showcase your performance over time. Users can also use the built-in activity guide to see their activity over the day. This also gives guidance for reaching daily activity goals based on your personal data.
Other smart coaching features of the Polar M430 include continuous heart rate monitoring, smart calories, activity benefits, fitness tests, and recovery status. You can even track your sleep to make sure you’re getting enough rest for your running style.
While the Coros Apex is an award-winning multi-sports watch, it’s perfect for any avid runner too.
This sophisticated sports watch gives users a complete training guide formulated by an algorithm. This guide is unique to every wearer and is perfect for meeting any personal fitness goals. The guide uses your pace, distance, activity, and heart rate to give you the best running data.
The Coros Apex can also give specific data including stride ratio, L/R balance, cadence, stride height, form power, stride length, and ground time. If you want the best running data available, the Coros Apex could be the watch for you.
If you want to avoid injuries, you need to ensure you’re training safely. With the help f the Coros Apex you can get personalized data to help you know when to rest up and when to train hard. This is calculated through your stamina levels and training effort via watch data.
This watch also features extra-long battery life to ensure the watch stays alive while you’re out and about. Charge less and run more with the Coros Apex athletic battery life.
Explore more features of the Coros Apex watch here.
Mi Band 6
Many of the running watch options on this list come with a hefty price tag. While they offer premium features, you can opt for a budget option that will also suit your running lifestyle. The Mi Band 6 from Xiaomi is a great example of a sports tracker that can do it all for a budget fee.
With lots of high-tech services that measure up to other leading brands, this watch deserves more recognition. This is a good first running watch option if you’ve never worked with a sports watch before as you don’t need to spend a lot of money upfront.
The Mi band 6 offers over 30 sports modes, which include running, walking, cycling, and even treadmilling. You can also use a heart rate sensor, a blood pressure monitor, SpO2 sensors, and sleep tracking too. This sleek option offers optimized fitness trackers to make sure you can take charge of your health. Users can even access female health-tracking, stress monitors, and meditation breathing too.
If you’re a beginner in the running world, or want t start your running watch journey with an affordable option, the Mi Band 6 might be the watch for you. Read our full review here.
Do Running Watches Include Incident Detection?
One of the most in-demand smartwatch features at the moment is incident detection, but how does this help improve the running experience?
Well, incident detection (sometimes referred to as fall detection) can recognize when the user has fallen, and if needed the watch will send your location to emergency contacts or make an SOS call. This is very handy if you’re a fan of running far from home, hiking, or if you take part in any solo adventure sports. It gives runners a backup safety plan and makes sure they can be found if injured. This feature is also popular with senior citizens who need assistance after falls too.
Interested in learning more about incident detection? Explore the feature here.
Which Running Watches Offer Incident Detection?
If you’re interested in this popular feature, you may want to select a watch with incident detection built-in. Unfortunately, this software isn’t a standard requirement for all watches yet. It is present on Apple Watches from the Series 4 model to the Series 7 release (and it’s found on the SE watch too). Garmin also uses this technology, you can find it on the Forerunner series, the Fenix 6 series, and the Vivoactive 3 Music. You can also find incident detection software on the Samsung Galaxy Watch range, but these aren’t the best options for running.
Many watch fans are waiting for incident detection to be implemented into the Fitbit range. Sadly, these watches are still missing this safety feature, however, some expect it to be added to their new releases in 2022. No features have been confirmed yet though, so keep an eye out to see if Fitbit will use incident detection in the future.
That’s it for our top fifteen. Do you know what else you should wear running?
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