Having used the Striiv Smart Pedometer for nearly a year, I decided that I was ready to upgrade to the Garmin Forerunner 15. Which is more on the budget-conscious low-end for Garmin’s GPS fitness watch.
The watch is available on its own or you can get it with a heart rate strap, I decided that I would get it by itself for now. The watch comes with a charger for the watch ( and a way to upload your information to Garmin’s “Garmin Express” software for Mac and PC) and various quick start manual and instructions.
The watch comes in red and black and blue and black, green and black, purple and white, aqua and white, I chose the red and black version.
According to Garmin, the watch features the following:
- Tracks distance, pace, heart rate¹ and calories
- Activity tracking² counts steps and calories and reminds you when it’s time to move
- Compatible with foot pod³ for recording distance indoors
- Up to 8 hours of battery life with GPS on or 5 weeks in watch/activity tracking mode
- Save, plan and share your activities at Garmin Connect™
For me, while the Striiv Smart Pedometer was nice for the pedometer, altimeter and games, I wanted true stats that Garmin is known for and one that would sync up easily via GPS and view them on my PC/Mac and smartphone.
My first outing with the Garmin Forerunner 15, I was able to view my steps and my calories that I burned throughout the day. I do like how the watch motivates me to move within sitting for more than an hour and I automatically get up at work and start working until it shuts off.
The watch also features an auto lap function, so with each mile completed, you will hear a beep and the backlit screen flash. Once you update your data, you can save the data and use it as a summary for your next race. I also like the fact that it keeps record when you beat your previous time for a mile accomplished or your longest run. You can also receive badges on Garmin Connect.
The Garmin Forerunner 15 also can track via foot pod which the Forerunner 10 was not able to do.
And last, the battery power is great as it can last up to five weeks in watch/tracking mode or 8 hours if utilizing GPS often. While I would not swim with the watch (I would use my G-Shocks for those), Garmin does say the Forerunner 15 has a water rating of 5 ATM (50 Meters).
You can view via pace/distance, pace/calories, distance/calories, time/distance, time/pace and time/calories. But you can also configure your run/walk time as well.
And I was able to also use my data on Strava and MyFitnessPal apps as well.
Using the device is quite easy. Hit the red button on the top right and it asks if you want to connect to GPS and then you select yes. It takes less than a minute to access the GPS but once it gives you a go ahead, your set to go. When you’re done, hit the red button again and save your results and you can upload it to Garmin Connect.
The Garmin Connect showed me the map route of my run, how many miles, how much time it took, my average pace, elevation gain, calories burned.
There is also a chart on elevation and pace and you can view via splits and also time a segment of your route.
I’m not a hardcore runner, so for those who want more details on this watch, please check out Ray’s website for even more info. on this watch.
Overall, the Garmin Forerunner 15 is a low priced GPS fitness watch. Others may prefer the Fitbit style of band, while I prefer this watch and the ability to monitor heart rate and also using Garmin functionality.
Also, you can often find this watch cheaper than its original MSRP as well.
Personally, this is a GPS fitness watch for those that want the essential data of walk/run. It doesn’t capture any other type of sport, which the more expensive Garmin watches can do and there are also watches that have optical sensors as well.
This watch is primarily the essential basics of a GPS watch but it gets the job done!