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Why you should buy the Garmin Forerunner 920XT

If you are a multisport athlete with the Garmin 910XT, it’s debatable whether you really need to spend the money for an upgrade. However, if you own any other Garmin (like the 310xt) or similar device from another company, this is the device to get to satisfy your every possible need or desire.

I can run through all the specs, but you can get all of that on the Garmin website. Instead, I’ll point out the major features that made me decide to make the upgrade from the 910XT, and after a whole spring, summer and fall of using the Garmin Forerunner 920XT, it was money well spent.

1. WiFi Upload

This time saver was a huge reason why I went for the upgrade. Once your workout is completed, the data is uploaded to Garmin Connect, and if you have it set up, right into Training Peaks as well. If you are out of reach of a WiFi signal, you can connect to the Garmin Connect Mobile App and upload your data via Bluetooth. You can also manage your device with that connection as well without having to connect to a computer. All are great time saving features and that was well worth it for me. But the more I used the 920XT, I loved a lot more things that made me not regret my purchase.

2. I use it 24 hours a day.

Unlike the 910 or 310 XT, the 920XT can is made to be used all the time. You’ve got the simple watch feature of course (and you can change the watchface display with Apps on Connect IQ), but the 920XT has Activity tracking . It provides a running tally of your steps, calories burned, and your sleep. That was bonus I was not interested in, but find I use it daily and it was quite interesting to analyze my sleeping patterns. Also, if sitting inactive for too long, I appreciate the 920’s reminder to get up and moving. On occasion I make use of the Smart notifications option to receive quick views of emails and texts that could be important to respond to while in meetings, family gatherings, or working out in your pain cave.

3. HRM-Run

I suggest that you get the version with the HRM-Run strap (there is also a new version that includes the HRM-TRi and HRM-Swim that provides HR data while swimming if you need that data) because it has an accelerometer in the module that provides 3 running metrics: Cadence (# of steps per minute),
Vertical Oscillation (your “bounce” or  the vertical motion of your torso measured), and Ground contact time (amount of time in each step that your foot spends on the ground).

4. Swim training

When I actually did some swimming this year, the 920XT made it much more pleasurable. Outdoors, the GPS tracking works quite well, and indoors quite spectacularly. At the pool, all you have to do is set up the length of the pool and start swimming. The 920XT senses as you reach the end of the pool and counts all of the laps and distance. Having that backup is so valuable because I lose track of distances, sets, and laps all the time. The interval features blew me away too and worked to be a nice motivator to maintain pace for those multiple intervals.

5. Miscellaneous

Some other things I like are:

  • The ability to set up and connect to a variety of sensors (ie: Ant+ powermeters) fairly quickly and easily
  • Keeping track of PR’s, tracking treadmill running distance without a footpod (Not 100% accurate/in sync with the treadmill but it comes fairly close – good to have that distance in there for when I don’t have time to go into Garmin Connect or Training Peaks to enter that distance. I can always go in to correct it later).
  • Creating my own Activity Profiles (ie: Swim/Bike, Run/Bike/Run for races).
  • Battery life (unless I am utilizing a lot of Ant+ or power data, I can go a 2 weeks or more before needing to charge the 920XT).

Here are some other features that you might find of interest:

VO2 Max estimator, Recovery advisor, Colour Screen, built in metronome, a Race Predictor, controlling a Garmin VIRB camera and so much more.

There is a lot to like with the Garmin 920XT. Before I got it, I questioned whether it had enough bells and whistles to make the upgrade from the 910XT. I did have some technical issues where the wifi stopped working and I cursed the watch after thinking it was perfect. However, Running Free worked with Garmin to get me a replacement device and it was back to bliss once again. For me, it’s the perfect multisport watch as it satisfies every need I can possibly think of.

If you decide to get one at Running Free, make use of the code 11296 to save a few bucks.

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