5 Best GPS Running Watches: Compare, Buy & Save (2018)


GPS technology can enhance your training and performance, whether you’re getting ready for your first 5K or are aiming for a personal record in your next marathon. A GPS-enabled device can track your speed and location as you run, which can be used to provide useful feedback about your workouts. Many GPS running watches are also Bluetooth enabled so that you can instantly upload and share information, such as your favorite running routes.

In addition to GPS monitoring, many of today’s best GPS running watches come with several other training-oriented features. Some examples include built-in coaching programs to help you meet your target goals and track workouts, along with continuous heart-rate monitoring and multiple workout modes so that you can continue to accurately track your favorite activities.

What are the best GPS running watches?

1. Suunto Spartan Sport HR – $264.39

best gps running watch


Pros: Cons:
  • GPS route navigation
  • Water resistant
  • Includes a compass
  • Doesn’t offer wrist-based heart rate monitoring
  • A bit bulky
  • Heart rate monitor isn’t included

If you’re looking for the best GPS running watch for running along with general use during your favorite outdoor activities, consider the Suunto Spartan Sport HR. GPS route navigation accurately guides you along your routes. This watch also comes with a compass, and is water resistant up to 100 meters. If you’re heading out for a different activity, you can likely find the right one with the 80 pre-set sports.

Battery life is approximately 10 hours in training mode, and up to 80 hours if you’re trying to conserve power. You can use the accompanying app to keep track of your progress and compare your results to others within your age range.

Buy the Suunto Spartan Sport HR here.

Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR Baro – Unboxing, Menu, and size comparison vs fenix 5XUnboxing the NEW Suunto Spartan Sport HR Baro! This thing is a beast! Get it here: geni.us/cbylBT (Amazon) Full Review is LIVE! youtube.com/watch?v=BIQhztLltbg Photos by: instagram.com/jmvdigital_photo/ /// THE GEAR /// Favorite Wearable (fenix 5X): geni.us/tpYB4j (Amazon) Bike GPS: geni.us/IZULbM & geni.us/ys01orB (Amazon) Adventure GPS: geni.us/CuUyGeJ (Amazon) /// CONNECT & UPDATES /// Twitter: twitter.com/GetDesFit Instagram: instagram.com/getdesfit/…2017-11-10T00:15:25.000Z

2. Polar M430 – $179.00 – $278.60

gps running watch


Pros: Cons:
  • Advanced running metrics
  • Customized training plans
  • Wrist-based heart rate monitoring
  • A bit bulky
  • Some complain of syncing issues
  • Relatively small display

The Polar M430 is designed for the performance-minded runner seeking the best GPS running watch for measuring speed, distance, pace and more, both inside and outdoors. A built-in running program lets you choose from various target distances, ranging from the 5K to marathon, and receive a customized training plan.

You can make your training and racing more efficient with the built-in running index, which analyzes speed and heart rate data to predict an approximate race finish time. This watch features wrist-based heart rate monitoring, along with a heart rate algorithm for accurate results. A smart coaching tool provides the tools you need to work towards your goals.

Buy the Polar M430 here.

POLAR M430 GPS – HANDS-ON DETAILS!Full Details: dcrainmaker.com/2017/04/hands-on-polars-m430-gps-watch-with-optical-hr.html Here's a first look at the new Polar M430 GPS watch. This new unit now contains optical heart rate (HR), plus vibration alerts and tweaks like a new connector. I dive into all the details including a first run with the watch, as well as GPS and HR data accuracy analysis. DCR…2017-04-06T12:44:35.000Z

3. Lintelek Fitness Tracker – $29.58

gps fitness watch


Pros: Cons:
  • Budget-friendly
  • Available in several colors
  • 24/7 activity tracker
  • Only compatible with smartphones
  • App could be better
  • Only records workout data when walking or running

If you’re looking for the best GPS running watch on a tight budget, consider the Lintelek Fitness Tracker, which is available for just under $30. A connected GPS tracker provides information such as your average speed, distance covered and route covered. You can also use the device to get a sense of your overall wellness by tracking sleep patterns along with total steps covered and calories consumed throughout the day.

A large OLED screen makes it easy to see your stats at a glance. This fitness watch offers continuous heart rate monitoring and is compatible with Android and iOS smartphones. There are 14 available sport-specific modes. The watch also has an IP67 rating. According to DSM&T Company, products with this rating can withstand exposure to water, including powerful jets.

Buy the Lintelek Fitness Tracker here.

4. Garmin vívosmart 4 – $129.99

garmin watch


Pros: Cons:
  • Slim design
  • Stylish metal accents
  • Can be worn when swimming
  • Battery life could be better
  • Relatively limited color options
  • Some find the pulse oximeter sensor readings a bit inaccurate

The Garmin vívosmart 4 blends performance with functionality. Its slim design means you can wear the watch throughout the day, whether you’re recording a run or other workout, or you want to keep tabs on your overall health and wellness. Metal accents add a touch of style to this Garmin watch, which also monitors REM sleep for more advanced feedback. Another feature is a built-in pulse oximeter, which monitors oxygen levels as you sleep. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, pulse oximetry can be useful in certain situations, such as monitoring a person’s ability to tolerate an increase in activity levels, or to check for signs of sleep apnea.

A Garmin rating of “swim” means you can safely wear the watch while swimming, as well as in the shower or out in the rain. Bluetooth Smart and ANT+ connectivity lets you quickly and easily upload workout data.

Buy the Garmin vívosmart 4 here.

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5. Huawei Band 2 Pro – $67.93

gps watch


Pros: Cons:
  • Built-in GPS for accurate results
  • Can be worn swimming
  • Battery can last up to 21 days per charge
  • Very basic heart rate data
  • Small screen
  • Can be tough to read display in sunlight

Huawei Band 2 Pro is a comprehensive GPS tracker and fitness wristband that includes a built-in GPS to accurately track your favorite running routes. The watch is also water resistant and can be worn when swimming, showering or running in the rain. If you’re trying to improve your running performance, you can use the accompanying workout app to access information such as Vo2 max and recovery time. A single charge can yield up to five hours when using GPS and heart rate monitoring, and up to 21 days with typical use.

Buy the Huawei Band 2 Pro here.

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