Garmin's Forerunner 620 and 220 Watches Replace a Running Coach

Have you been putting off getting into running? Garmin's new running watches may inspire you to start. The Forerunner 620 and Forerunner 220, available for $399 and $249, respectively, provide users with advanced features that Garmin says can all but replace your running coach. The standout of the two watches is the 620, which sports a Chroma color touch screen display and features including a recovery advisor, race predictor and VO2 max estimator.

When used in conjunction with the optional $89 HRM-Run monitor, the 620 can be used to advise users of how long they should take off between heavy workouts in order to full recover. The VO2 max estimator, which is the maximum volume of oxygen that can be used per minute, per kilogram of body weight, gauges your performance against other runners of your gender and age range. The VO2 max estimator can also be used to determine how a runner would perform in their next race.

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The HRM-Run Monitor, which wraps around your chest, can be used to determine your cadence, vertical oscillation and ground contact time. The cadence metric helps provide you with your total number of steps per minute, while vertical oscillation informs you of the bounce in your run motion. Ground contact time tells you how many milliseconds your feet spend on the ground with each step you take. Less time on the ground, means a faster run time.

Users can connect both the Forerunner 620 and 220 directly to their iPhone or Android smartphones to upload their running data to the Garmin Connect Web page through the Garmin Connect Mobile app. From there, you can see how you stack up against other runners, as well as view your friends' real-time running performance. Plus, both smartwatches tell the time. Both Forerunners are water-resistant up to 50 meters. The 620's touch screen can also be used with gloves, while the 220 uses physical buttons.

If you're looking to grab the Forerunner 620 with the available HRM-Run monitor, you can pick them up as a bundle for $449. The Forerunner 220, meanwhile, can be had with a premium heart rate monitor for $299.

Daniel P. Howley
LAPTOP Senior Writer
A newspaper man at heart, Dan Howley wrote for Greater Media Newspapers before joining He also served as a news editor with ALM Media’s Law Technology News, and he holds a B.A. in English from The Richard Stockton College of New Jersey.