Tuesday, January 23, 2007

HRM advice?

got one? Like it? Hate it? have one to recommend for me?

I have a bare-bones Nike model that displays HR, stopwatch and current time, but not much else. No memory, no alarms, no zones. Plus the chest strap is tricky -- when it works its way up out from under the bottom of my sportsbra, I get random readings, like 87 in the middle of a 10-miler. Um, not really. And then of course there was the time that I forgot to switch the reading from stopwatch to HR, and I looked down a few minutes into my run and saw 240! Dumbas$ here thought I was having a stroke!

So it's time for a new one. I don't need GPS or distance functions -- I can get that with the Garmin and NanoMark. I'd like to be able to wear the watch as a regular wristwatch as well, seeing as my Disney watch from the cruise in '05 bit the dust before Christmas. If I'm going to buy a new watch, I'd rather have it be useful and not just pretty to look at. That's the one thing keeping me from biting the bullet and getting a new Garmin 305. One that I could wear whilst swimming might be a good choice, seeing as I've got to get some of that in sooner than later.* I've not really set a budget for it - I don't think I can spend $200 or so, though.

So, bring it on. I've done a little bit o' research, but all the choices are a bit overwhelming. Help a girl out here, plz! Muchas grassy-ass, as my dad likes to say.

*speaking of the swim -- I called the aquatics coordinator at the university where i work today to arrange for private lessons. I am going to split with another woman in my area, so 5 half-hour lessons will cost us each $75 instead of $100. The lessons will be at the pool in the campus gym/fitness center, so we can do it over lunchtime. It should be enough to get me going on lap swimming by early February so I can start the Sprint plan full-force at the end of March. Eeep!


From Here to There said...

I had the Timex Bodylink - it used to bounce around with odd numbers like you experience. But sometimes it really WAS my heart!

I now have the Garmin 301, and it's fantastic since I flashed the software. It was great before, but again, used to jump around sometimes. But you don't need a Garmin.

Oh ya! My first heart rate monitor was a Polar. I guess they are the true pros where heart rates are concerned. You may want to try that route?

triathlonmom said...

i don't know anything about hr monitors but was a Champion watch (no chest strap)one today at Target for $44 or something on sale. What do you think about that? For $44 I'm almost thinking of getting myself one...but only if it actually works. Have you heard?

Brian said...

I've got a Suunto, and wrote about it on my site.

Right now, I run with it (always) but turn off the interval timer since I'm just trying to rack up some miles w/o worrying about my pace.

I do use the high/low warning to let me know when my heart rate gets outta whack.

I like it.

I don't think it's extra fancy, and my next one will let me upload data to my computer so I can look at it in other ways (instead of just posting my average / max for each run)

IM Able said...

I just started using a hrm in the form of my lovely garmin. so far, i'm just in awe of it mainly because i don't really yet know how to make us of all of this knowledge yet and i don't think i will until i have a good group of runs and bikes in the history.

but...so the weird advice. do you actually put the strap under the elastic of your bra? i tried that for the first little while and it didn't work all that well. i don't think the bra's like playing with others very much. i found that if i strapped it immediately below the lower elastic (i.e., not under) it was fine.

and, by the way, i do (cough) *not* have a flat tummy and i thought that would be a problem. but it never turned out to be.