I have gotten quite a few queries asking me how I like my GPS device. For those who have asked the question, or wanted to, this post is for you.
Forerunner 201 [my 1st GPS]:
It all started with the 201. This was the first of my GPS devices. Right off, I loved the technoloty but I hated the cumbersome size of the long device. The 201 rubbed on my wrist bone for the entire run. When my wrist was nice and bruised from the device, I was forced to address the issue. I ended up cutting the top off of a pair of ankle socks to use as a wrist band underneath my GPS. I made it fun by using the tops of defeat socks (which I found to tight for running). I coined names for each of the designs. “Lady Luck” (with lady bugs) was reserved for races, and “Flower Power” was more for long runs. It worked out.
When I began exploring the tri scene, I got the quick release kit which is available for the 201. Included in the kit is a bike mount which makes viewing your speed easier than if it were on your wrist. When you transition from the bike to the run, you simply unsnap it from the bike mount and swivel it onto a wrist strap that you already have on. Also, I did swim with the 201 (in a baggie) inside my swim cap. You just have to be careful not to drop it during the swim to bike transition.
I was happy with the 201, but wished it wasn’t so big. I also wondered if I should have gotten the 205 which had the ability to track my heart rate.
Forerunner 305 [aka “Garminia”]:
When the 305 came out, I upgraded and Tom happily inherited my hand-me-down 201. He pretty much used it for his cycling and kept it mounted on his bike 100% of the time. He was happy, and I was happy too.
I liked the new design of the 305 as it didn’t bug my wrist bone as much. I dropped the wrist bands as they were too hot with this GPS device. I just pushed the watch up my wrist a bit farther to avoid the bone. I began examining the trends of my heart rate (HR), and also programed my interval workouts using the advanced workouts feature. It was pretty nice to be free to do interval workouts no matter where I was.
Then last spring, when my 305 was out for run in the rain (the first one due to limited runs during the winter of Tom’s decline) the face leaked in a bad way. I was annoyed in a HUGE way and promptly took it back to REI to exchange. The device is way too expensive to be a fair-weather friend. Shortly after the exchange, I heard about the 405’s release. I returned to REI and gave my 305 back to them since it was essentially fresh out of the box (even though I’d paid for the original long before). In my head (and probably only in mine), I justified this move as the latest 305 device was giving me different readings from the old 305. I was already questioning the accuracy; I just didn’t know which 305 was the unreliable one. The coming of the 405 was enough to push the return the 2nd 305.
I went without a GPS for more than half a year, which was tough. I came to realize just how much I rely on my GPS for motivation. It seemed like forever waiting for the 405s to arrive.