Gone are the days when sports watches were only used for tracking time and heart rate. In the past few years, more and more manufacturers have come up with triathlon watches incorporating a wide range of advanced features.
These watches can track cadence, speed, distance and location along with various other metrics. You can use them during swimming or cycling and when it comes to your running session, you can rely on the same watch for providing a valuable set of information.
In this article, we have curated a comprehensive review of top five triathlon watches which you can purchase. Depending on your preference, and the budget which you can afford to spend, you can purchase any one of these watches with full confidence.
Our Top Selection For Performance Watches For Your Triathlon Race
1. Garmin Forerunner 920XT
When it comes to Garmin, this brand needs no introduction in the field of quality GPS watches. Having produced a series of premium-quality products in the past, the Garmin Forerunner 920XT is considered as one of its finest productions till date.
The Garmin Forerunner 920XT is a versatile watch which, in simple words, can provide distinct set of measurements for running, cycling and swimming. First of all, it can track your cadence rate, your vertical oscillation and the time spent by your feet on the ground during every single step.
It can also determine the number of steps being taken by you to move from one point to the other. For the health-conscious customers, it can inform them about the number of calories burned during a 24 hour duration.
As per its ability to track your progress under-water, the manufacturer has designed the Garmin Forerunner 920XT in such a way that it can calculate your speed, distance covered and even your number of strokes.
In fact, it also comes with a dedicated GPS tracker along with a premium SWOLF tracker.
Then comes the length tracker that is designed in such a way that once you have reached from one point to the other, it will inform you about the number of strokes it took to cover that particular distance.
Once you are on your bike, this product can be connected with the bike’s ANT+ power meter which, in simple words, turns it into your bike computer. You can even use this watch to track your heart rate but for this purpose, you have to purchase a heart rate monitor on your own.
You can easily operate the Garmin Forerunner 920XT as the manufacturer has designed this product with six different buttons. Four of them are side buttons and the remaining two are two are designed on the front side of this watch.
Picking up your favorite sport is quite easy as you can switch from one mode to the other by pressing a single button.
Finally, this product comes with a built-in Wi-Fi and you can also use Bluetooth to send or receive data via the Garmin Forerunner 920XT.
You can even connect this watch with the Garmin Mobile app which comes handy for all those customers who want to track their progress on a consistent basis.
2. Polar V800 GPS Sports Watch
The Polar V800 GPS Sports Watch is designed for all those customers who are looking to make this purchase without spending too heavily. Available at an affordable price range, this product comes in three different designs.
It is basically a dedicated multisport watch which can provide reliable set of information during swimming, cycling and running sessions.
This product comes with a large display which ensures that regardless of the intensity of your workout, you can always enjoy precise information on the first time of asking.
Once you wear this watch on the wrist, it tracks your run cadence, distance covered and even the speed with which you travelled from one point to the other. Use it in combination with a heart rate monitor and it can track your heart’s movement in an impeccable manner.
Another thing which is quite impressive about this watch’s design is that it can even measure your heart rate deep under water.
The Polar V800 GPS Sports Watch lets you create separate profiles for different sports which is viable for all those users who want to shift from one mode to the other in the midst of their activity.
It is designed to stay waterproof for no less than 30-meters under water and if you are looking for some guidance, this watch can also provide you with valuable feedback at the end of each activity.
This product comes with a long battery life as you can use it for 14 hours on a single charge. Other useful features in this product include a built-in barometer, Bluetooth-connectivity and its USB connectivity.
You can connect the Polar V800 GPS Sports Watch with the Polar Flow app which is available on both iOS and Android. This can be done with the help of a USB cable and this application can help you synchronise this watch with your latest fitness record.
3. Garmin Fenix 5
Let’s face it: nobody purchases a triathlon watch for the sake of fashion. This is the kind of product that has to deal with a lot of abuse on a daily basis. In order to stand the test of time, it should come with a durable construction and that exactly is the case with the Garmin Fenix 5.
This watch incorporates a rugged design as the manufacturer has used a double-bevel construction to protect the face of the Garmin Fenix 5 in case of an unanticipated fall. Garmin is so sure about the quality of this watch that you’ll get a 1-year warranty on making this purchase.
It also features a large, 1.2mm display which is further powered by a strong LED backlight. Such kind of design makes it easy to read under all kinds of conditions which is viable for all those of you who are going to use this watch under direct sunlight.
The Garmin Fenix 5 is designed to accommodate a number of different activities. You can use it for swimming, cycling, running along with various other activities including skiing, parachuting and even golf.
It features different modes for each activity and depending on the sport which you want to track with this watch, it will provide you with distinct set of metrics.
Another thing which we found quite impressive in this watch’s design is the fact that it comes with a built-in wrist heart rate technology.
This feature works in such a way that as compared to other GPS watches, that requires you to purchase a separate HRM, it can track your heart rate without any such obligation.
It can use this information to track the number of calories being burned by you in a specific sporting activity which is viable for all those of you who want to stay in a perfect physical shape.
For added versatility, the Garmin Fenix 5 comes with interchangeable wristbands. Depending on your personal choice, you can choose from silicone, leather and metal wristbands which eventually allows you to match this watch with your sporting acitivity.
You can also use the Garmin Fenix 5 as a dedicated smartwatch as it can be connected to your smartphone via a certain ease. Afterward, you can receive call and message notifications on your watch and it can also provide you with your local weather forecast.
Finally, the Garmin Fenix 5 comes with a long battery life that eventually depends on the way in which you are using this product.
For example, if you are using it without GPS or even the heart rate monitor, it can stay charged for as long as 2 weeks. It can last for 1 full day when the GPS is turned on so unlike other watches, you don’t have to recharge this product every now and then.
4. TomTom Spark 3 Cardio
For customers on a limited budget, the TomTom Spark 3 Cardio is one of the least expensive products in this list. Despite of its inexpensive price tag, this product is still callable of tracking a handful of activities with impeccable precision. It comes in two different designs as apart from the stylish white color scheme, you can also purchase in a traditional black design.
Starting with the standout feature of the TomTom Spark 3 Cardio, this is one of the few triathlon watches available in the market that come with a built-in heart rate monitor.
This is a viable feature for all those of you who don’t want to spend additional money on a separate heart rate monitor. Basically, it works in such a way that as you are moving from one place to the other, it will keep on providing precise readings about your heart rate on its large display.
This watch is designed to accommodate all three activities of a triathlon race as it can provide you with distinct set of measurements for running, cycling and swimming.
Just like the aforementioned item, the TomTom Spark 3 Cardio comes with different modes for each activity as it can track a handful of metrics including time, pace and distance.
It can even determine the number of calories burned during some sort of physical exertion and for your convenience, this product can also track the quality of your sleep.
Its GPS tracking feature lets you explore new routes on a daily basis and when you can also connect the TomTom Spark 3 Cardio with your smartphone, it lets you receive your phone messages and calls on its display.
For all those of you who want to keep themselves motivated, the TomTom Spark 3 Cardio gives you the luxury of comparing your personal fitness levels with users from around the globe. It will compare your information with users belonging to the same age group so you can determine whether or not to work harder in your next workout session.
5. Garmin Forerunner 310XT
The Garmin Forerunner 310XT has struck a perfect balance between a solid looking design and an affordable price tag. This product comes with a durable design and when it also incorporates a waterproof construction, you can easily use it for a number of different activities.
The Garmin Forerunner 310XT comes with a large display that is capable of tracking your cadence, calories burned, distance and pace along with various other metrics.
If you already own a heart rate monitor, you can pair it up with this gadget in order to get flawless information about how your heart is working in the midst of your workout sessions.
It also boasts of a USB stick which makes it easy to connect this device with your PC.
Basically, you just have to create a Garmin connect account and afterward, it will automatically upload your workout information on the web. This is made possible by the premium ANT+ technology which comes integrated in this wearable.
If you are looking for some competition, the Garmin Forerunner 310XT can set you up against a virtual opponent thanks to its precise GPS technology. This is an ideal feature for all those of you who tends to perform to their fullest when competing against another individual.
This triathlon watch comes with a long battery life as you can use it – on a single charge – for no less than 20 hours.
It also comes with a sleek-looking design so even if you are going to wear this watch for a good amount of time every day, you won’t be suffering from any sort of fatigue.
Finally, you will get a 1-year warranty on purchasing the Garmin Forerunner 310XT which is quite impressive when you compare it with similar-priced gadgets in the market.
Advantages of Triathlon Watches
Triathlon watches come handy in a number of useful ways. Unlike the old-age sports watches, which were designed just for the sake of time-keeping, these models incorporate a wide range of hi-tech features.
They can tell you about distance and the speed in which you are moving from one place to the other. Some of these watches incorporate three different modes for swimming, bicycling and running which ensures that having them on your wrist can help you make the most of your triathlon race
How to Purchase the Best Performance Watch for your Triathlon Race
When it comes to purchasing a performance watch from today’s market, it is imperative to consider different features. These features will help you differentiate a high-quality product from a faulty one and they can also make the most of your investment.
This is one of the most important things to consider when purchasing a performance watch. When a triathlon race is a combination of three different activities, it is imperative that your watch can cope will all of them in a separate manner.
In simple words, this watch should come with three different modes for cycling, swimming and running. It should also be designed in such a way that you can easily move from one mode the other by pressing a single button.
This feature comes handy when you are participating in a triathlon race where you just cannot afford to spend a handful of time while switching from the swimming mode to the cycling mode.Not only it isn’t feasible in the midst of your race, but at the same time, it can also affect your performance in a negative manner.
Similarly, the multi-sport feature displays useful information about every single activity instead of displaying data about the whole race. For example, it tells you about your speed in miles per hour when you are on your bicycle. But as soon as you start running, it changes its units to miles/minute.
Such kind of information will also help you work on your weaknesses as it will make it easy to narrow down those areas in your game where you need to improve on a consistent basis.
It goes without saying that every triathlon watch should come with a waterproof construction. You are going to use it during swimming and as long as you don’t intend to use three different watches for swimming, cycling and running, it is imperative to go with the one that comes with a waterproof construction.
Another thing which customers have to take care of is to make sure that a waterproof watch can do a number of useful things under water.
It should calculate your distance, display useful information about all the swimming metrics and it should also be able to analyze your stroke count. Some watches can even monitor the pool laps but they also come at a higher price tag.
Long Battery Life
Nobody wants to use a watch that tends to die in the middle of their workout sessions. Not only it can affect their overall performance, but at the same time, any such product can also ruin their mood.
In order to save yourself from any such situation, make sure that the watch – in which you are going to invest – incorporates a long battery life. Basically, it should come with such a battery timing which can outlive your training schedule quite easily.
If you are looking to purchase the best performance watch for your triathlon race, you can invest in any one of the aforementioned watches.
All five of them incorporate the multi-sport feature and every one of these models come from trusted manufacturers.
However, when it comes to the standout performer, it has got to be the Garmin Forerunner 920XT. Despite the fact that this product features a decent price tag, it still comes with all the hi-tech features that can give you a good value for your money.
This watch incorporates built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth and it also comes with dedicated modes for different sporting activities.