Forerunner 110 is the easiest way to track your training. It’s GPS-enabled so it knows how far and how fast — with no extra bells and whistles. There’s virtually no setup required, so you can just press start and run or walk with it.
- Dimensions – 4.5 cm wide x 6.9 cm high x 1.4 cm deep (1.8 in x 2.7 in x 0.6 in)
- Display Size – 2.5 cm diameter (1 in)
- Display resolution – 52 x 30 pixels
- Rechargeable lithium-ion battery
- Water resistant (IPX7)
- 1000 lap history
- Heart Rate Monitor compatible
- Garmin Connect Compatible
- Garmin Training Center software compatible
- Auto Lap
- Heart Rate based calorie computation
- Sport Watch mode
- Weight – 52g (1.8 oz)
- Retail – $230 (with Heart Rate Monitor), $180 without
I initially had one of the Garmin Forerunner 305 watches that I used for some time. After about four years of use it finally died on me. When that happened, I looked for a watch that was not only smaller but easier to use for Melissa. Enter the Garmin Forerunner 110 watch. An easy to use GPS watch with paired down features.
Melissa and I both tested this watch over the last six months. We walked, ran, and even used it for snowsports all around the Northwest. We did not put it through too much rain, but it did get tested in thick canopy, cloudy days, and clear unobstructed views of the sky.
The Garmin Forerunner 101 watch is part of the highly successful Forerunner line of running watches. The 110 is made to be a stripped-down version of the other Forerunner watches for runners who want to keep it simple. It is made ready to go with virtually no setup required.
The Forerunner 110 is smaller that some of the other options in the line. The main display is circular shaped and has a diameter of 2.5 cm (1 inch). There are four buttons around the outside, 2 on each side. They are the light button, start/stop button, page/menu button, and lap/reset button. The main button is the page/menu button, and it is a different color than the rest. This button brings up the menus and activates the GPS when changing screens. The watch has three screens to scroll through, and two of them are used during workouts. The main screen is the sport watch. It displays time and date. The second screen displays distance on top, workout time in the middle, and average pace at the bottom. The third the screen is the same as the second except the workout time is replaced with your current heart rate. Furthermore, on these screens is a couple of other symbols: a battery life indicator, a satellite indicator, and a heart-rate monitor indicator. The battery life symbol does exactly what you think, it shows how much battery life is left. The satellite symbol appears when satellites are fixed and receiving signals. The heart-rate monitor symbol shows up when the heart-rate monitor is active. There is also an icon for the alarm when it is turned on.
The straps are made of the same material as the rest of the watch body. They are permanent attached but seem rather durable. One side of the straps features a broad metal clip to attach to the other strap. The strap has many holes to optimize the fit. This is best depicted in the picture. The Forerunner 110 is rechargeable so you never need batteries, you just need to remember to plug it in. The watch comes with a USM cord with a charging clip at the end. To charge you just need to clip it to the watch making sure to line up the appropriate pins. This seems easy but proves more difficult than it should be. Transferring data is also done through this same process. When fully charged the watch is supposed to have a battery life of three weeks in sport watch mode and eight hours in workout mode.
The Garmin Forerunner is made for primarily running. The Ant+ monitor is made to pick up the signal form a heart-rate monitor but no other accessories. This means it will not pick up the signal from the cadence monitor or a foot pod. The watch can be used indoors for timing purposes. When you first change the screen initially from the main screens the watch will ask you if you want to train indoors. If you choose “no”, the GPS will not try and acquire a signal. When you initially switch the screen off the main screen the 110 will begin to acquire satellite signals. There is a progress bar that appears to show its progress.
If you hold down the menu button for three seconds, the menu pops up with a list of options. They are: history, alarm, auto lap, user profile, setup, HR monitor, and about. Under the history menu, you can bring up and look at past activities. The alarm and auto lap set up each of these features if you wish to use them. With the user profile, you can set up your age, weight, height, gender, and activity class so the watch can calculate your calories effectively. The setup option allows the user to adjust the way time is set and displayed, toggle tones on and off, change the language (there are many), change the units between miles and kilometers, and change the pace setting to speed. The heart rate option sets up the heart-rate monitor if you plan on using one. Finally, the about option displays the technical information of the watch.
When speaking about a watch, there is not too much detail to go into about fit. The straps are nice and long but have a lot of adjustments. I think that these straps should fit about 99% of the population, I would only worry if you have really large wrists. One of the best aspects of the Garmin Forerunner 110 is the size of the watch. It is much smaller than some of the first GPS watches were. I have smaller wrists, and those watches were giant on me. While I still think this watch is bigger than what I wear everyday, it is not so big that I do not like to wear it. That was the case with the 305, I wore it because of the data it gave me, if there was a better option, I took it.
The underside of the watch and the straps are both comfortable against the skin. I have not had any issues with comfort with this watch. Everything on it is rounded so I don’t expect to have any issues.
Ease of Use (30%)
Water Resistance (10%)
Data Presentation (30%)
The Garmin Forerunner 110 has been a good watch thus far. There is a couple features I wish it had that has been updated in models higher up the Forerunner food chain. Fist off the watch is really easy to use. If you want accurate data for calories, or you need to change the display at all you will need to go through the setup menus but once that is done you are ready to go. All you need to do to start a workout is change the screen to one of the two workout screens, wait for the GPS to get fixed, and hit the start button. When you are finished with you workout you can hit the stop button. From there you can look at your data on the history page or transfer your data to one of many computer programs now available. I personally came into this test with a lot of experience with another Garmin watch so the transition was really easy for me. Melissa, on the other hand, had much less knowledge but found this watch easy to use after playing around with it once or twice.
The Forerunner 110 can be used for a variety of activities, but it definitely will not track all the information some of the other models do for those activities. Two main things missing are being able to connect to a foot pod or cadence sensor. With the foot pod, it means that the watch cannot track pace if you are running on a treadmill. All you will get is time. With the cadence sensor, you cannot track your cadence while cycling; you can, however, track your route and speed, which makes it still a fairly solid option for cycling. Melissa and I have also used the watch when hiking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing, and it has been good at tracking those activities as well. With a pared down option like this as long as you know what you are getting you can use the watch accordingly.
The watch has a water resistance rating of IPX7. An IPX7 rating means the watch is protected against water immersion for 30 minutes at a depth of 1 meter. Essentially this means the watch can withstand rain and splashes of water. It is not meant for swimming, and I would be careful if it was to be used for sailing and activities like that. Melissa and I used it in dry and wet conditions and never had any issues whatsoever.
For data presentation, the watch does a descent job. In order to make the watch smaller Garmin had to shrink the screen a little as well. The main metric of pace/speed or heart rate is really easy to read on the run and the upper and lower metrics are slightly smaller and slightly more difficult to read while moving. The light was effective at night; I almost felt like the numbers are easier to read at night as it was more obvious where to look since everything else is dark. What I did like with the 305 was you can change how much data is presented on the screen. I would gladly drop one of the three metrics to make the other two more readable if I could. The other feature which is missing that I wish I had was a current pace metric. I bought this watch knowing that this was not on it, but I do still miss it.
The Forerunner 110 has been a good watch. The batteries do live up to their estimated life. When fully charged I got around eight hours of life out of the watch. A nice feature is the watch will turn itself off workout mode if it is not collecting data for an extended period of time. This help you not burn out your battery life by accident. I have done this one too many times on my 305. I almost forgot to cover the accuracy of the GPS. I have worn this on the track and found the GPS to be really close. I don’t think there are any perfect solutions, and this GPS is among the more accurate. Accuracy will be affected by the strength of signal, which will be affected by buildings and trees but the watch performs rather well after the GPS satellites are fixed.
Overall, I would definitely recommend this watch, but I do have some reservations. Just know that it does not interface with many of the add-ons that Garmin has. Furthermore, the watch does not have many of the features of the higher up models and does not show current pace/speed. If those are not important to you, this is a great watch. It is easy to use and not nearly as big as some of the other running watches available. The GPS is accurate and acquires a signal fairly quickly. I think this is a good running watch that can be used for other activities as well with the mentioned limitations. It is a bit on the expensive side at $230 for the watch and heart-rate monitor. For a point of reference, I got 5+ years of life out of my last Forerunner, but I may or may not be the exception. As always, your mileage may vary.
Pros [field name=iFrame]
- Smaller size
- Ease setup and use
- Comfortable around wrist
- Fits many sizes of wrists
- Does not connect to other ANT+ add ons
- No current pace/speed