Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor

The Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor is an all singing and all dancing
piece of exercise technology that can help you achieve your training goals. Heart rate monitors are very useful to track your fitness goals and many runners, joggers and tri-athletes swear by them. There are many different types of heart rate monitors available, however my heart rate monitor of choice is the Garmin forerunner 305 which has an extra feature, which is a gps receiver.

Setting up the Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor

Before you first use the Garmin forerunner 305 you need to pair the monitor to the heart rate belt, which is a simple process that is explained in the user manual. Once the heart rate belt and the monitor have been paired once, the process does not need to be repeated until the batteries are changed.

Setting up the monitor and adding your personal information is a bit more of a challenge and is going to take some time. Regardless of how clued up you think you are this process is best done with the user manual ready to hand. In fact, I would even go as far to say as to read the setting up section in the user manual first and then attempt to set up the monitor. You need to spend a bit of time and care in setting up the monitor to ensure the data it provides is correct. Simple errors such as entering your incorrect height, age or weight can seriously throw out the data, which will not help you accurately track your progress. 

Setting up the monitor does take a bit of time and care however it is not that difficult, providing you keep the manual to hand that is. Fortunately, you only need to set the monitor up once as it will store all your personal information.

Using the Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor

The Garmin forerunner 305 is used in exactly the same way as the other heart rate monitors. All you need to do is put the chest strap around your torso, ensuring you wet the back of the heart rate belt in the first instance, attach the monitor around your wrist and turn it on. Wait for the monitor and the belt to pair up and then wait for the gps receiver to get a lock on the available satellites. The gps system may take a minute or so to lock on to the satellites, depending on the weather conditions and your exact location, so you may need to be patient. It is worth noting the gps receiver will take longer to lock on to satellites if you are in a covered area, such as in a woodland or even in a city.

With the gps receiver locked on to some satellites and the heart rate belt paired up all you need to do is press the start button and get running.

Whilst running you can flick through the display settings on the monitor and see your heart rate, your speed and how many calories you are burning. You can also scroll through and see where you are running on a map, which is a pretty cool feature.

The Garmin forerunner 305 is exceptionally easy to use, once it is set up, and you will have it figured out within a couple of minutes.

So what do I do with the Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor after my run? What is it going to tell me?

Standard hear rate monitors are only concerned with letting you know what your current heart rate is so you can stay within the correct heart rate zone for the duration of your exercise. The Garmin
forerunner 305 takes this one step further and with its inbuilt gps receiver it will track every move you make for you to analyse after your run.

Garmin forerunner 305(71537)


After your run you can plug the Garmin forerunner 305 in to your computer open up the Garmin training software and upload all the information collected during your run. The gps aspect will accurately plot your route, let you know how far you have run, how long you took to run the route,
your maximum speed when running the route, your average speed for running the route, your maximum heart rate whilst running the route and the amount of calories you burned off whilst running the route. You can also view your route on Google Earth, which is another cool feature.

Once you have uploaded all your data you can share it with Garmin’s online community and add some comments about the run, such as the weather conditions, the state of the terrain and how you were feeling during the run. With the gps receiver you can share your training log with everyone so they can also track your progress. If you do not want to share your training log, and not that many people want to, you obviously have the option to opt out and hide your training log so only you can access it.

You don’t have to use Garmin’s own training log to record your data and there are now many third party software providers that provide their own version. All of these training software packages will have slight differences, such as the user interface and the menu options, but at the end of the day all of them do the same basic job, so whether you want to spend out on additional software is entirely up to you, although I have never had the need to do so.

Using the Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor for cycling

The Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor is an aid that is primarily designed for running, jogging and orienteering however it is also great for cycling.

When using the Garmin forerunner for cycling flicking through the displays on the monitor to see what your heart rate is doing, what speed you are doing etc. is a bit awkward and quite frankly
dangerous, therefore I use it in conjunction with a standard cycle computer so I can monitor my speed. To monitor my heart rate I have audible alarms on my monitor so I don’t actually need to see the display. If the audible signal indicates my heart rate is too fast and if it indicates I am going to slow I speed up and push a bit harder.

It is the post ride data the Garmin forerunner 305 provides that is of most use to me, not the information provided during the cycle ride.

The final word on the Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor 

In all honesty, the Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor is a bit too much and has too many features for those people who are simply interested in running or jogging, however the Garmin forerunner 305 is something that will appeal to runners who are also interested in gadgets and technology.

Despite the inclusion of the inbuilt GPS receiver the Garmin Forerunner 305 is not that expensive compared to other heart rate monitors so you may find the additional cost worth it just to have a look and see if the extra exercise information is going to be of any use to you. When buying a Garmin forerunner 305 the price can vary significantly so shop around to make sure you get it for the best price. There are many retailers selling the Garmin forerunner 305, so stock availability should not be an issue.

The big question is “would I recommend the Garmin forerunner and the answer is a definite yes. The Garmin is reliable and has never let me down, the monitor is well built and sturdy, I can use the Garmin for running and cycling and I think the post exercise data is simply awesome. Even if you don’t need the gps feature I would still recommend the Garmin forerunner 305 gps receiver with heart rate monitor over and above other heart rate monitors.