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Have a wearable device but don’t know how to get the most of it, or considering trying one of these gadgets to fine tune your training? Running enthusiast and member of the Garmin fitness team, Richard Robinson, outlines some of the features of a variety of wearable devices and how they can support you to become a better runner.

1. Keep the pace

By having your distance travelled and time elapsed displayed on your wrist, you can easily keep track of your running pace. By starting off too fast you might exert yourself too much, leaving you unable to reach your intended distance; so it’s important to keep an eye on your speed. Garmin’s range of Forerunner watches allow you to set alerts to help you stay at your desired speed. It also gives you the motivation to push yourself that little bit further for longer by helping you to visualise where you are, instead of just seeing the time tick by on your watch.

2. Get your own personal interval training coach

Wearable devices can act as your own personal trainer – beeping and vibrating to tell you what to do and when – e.g. when to sprint, when to reduce your pace, etc. This takes away the calculations and clock watching, leaving you to focus on your running, technique and looking where you’re going!

3. See your progression and achieve your target

Having a goal is a great way to stay motivated. A wearable device can help you set and monitor your progress towards short and long-term goals. Through access to an app or a website portal like Garmin Connect, you can review the data your device collects to identify areas for improvement or set new targets and challenges.

4. See your calorie analysis for the day

Using either integrated or third-party apps, such as Myfitnesspal, you can track your calories in as a food log and subtract the calories that you’ve burnt through exercise. You’ll know exactly how many calories you’ve burned, and therefore need to replace. Alternatively, if you are tracking your calories for weight loss or weight management, then it also works as motivation – showing how many calories you need to burn for the rest of the day.

5. Know how much you are exerting yourself

Some models come with heart rate monitors or wrist based heart rate such as the Garmin Forerunner 225. A huge benefit of monitoring your heart rate is that you will know exactly how hard you’re pushing yourself, rather than relying on feel. By looking at your heart rate and slowing your pace down to remain below 90% of your maximum capacity, you will be able to run further and for longer.

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