Posts Tagged ‘GPS watch’

Triathlon Gear List For Runners, Beginners and Beyond

Triathlon Gear List For Beginners. At the Wild Dog Triathlon

Coming out of the water at the Wild Dog Triathlon. (Phil Hospod)

As I stare down my sixth triathlon— Triathlon Valleyfield in Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Quebec on Sunday, August 24—I realize that I have fully fallen down the multi-sport rabbit hole. In that hole is an assortment of athletic equipment that I’ve accumulated to help me swim, bike and run my heart out. Before every race, I write out a triathlon gear list to be sure to pack for race day.

Triathlon Gear List For Beginners

Biking my second triathlon. (Capstone Photography)

Unlike running, triathlon is incredibly gear intensive. All that “stuff” is the main barrier to entry for runners who are interested in dabbling their toes in the open waters of the sport. Buying everything at once can be intimidating and expensive. I’ve staggered my purchases over the course of three years, reached out to sponsors, and still don’t have all the gear a truly competitive triathlete calls their own, like a tri-specific bike, areobars and the like. But that hasn’t stopped me from getting into the sport and it shouldn’t stop you either.

So here is my triathlon gear list. Some of these items are essential, some merely nice to have. But once you know that the sport of triathlon will be part of your regular racing routine, you’ll want each of these items in your gear bag.

I’ve listed the full price for each item, but in many cases I found them on sale or got them for free, and have indicated where that was the case. Where gender specificity is a factor, I’ve listed the women’s gear. But most items are available in men’s options too.

Triathlon Gear For The Entire Race

Tri Kit

Your tri kit is the outfit that takes you through all three events. Ideally, you can swim, bike and run in it. You don’t have to buy a fancy tri kit. I certainly didn’t. Here’s what I use to race and train. Both of my kits have two things in common: 1) They’re designed and tested by female triathletes for female triathletes, and 2) They’re from American companies that manufacture the majority of their products in the U.S. Read the rest of this entry →

Best Gifts For Runners 2013: Karla’s Favorite Things

best gifts for runners

A winter scene by Currier & Ives.

It was snowing just yesterday, my Christmas tree is lighting up my living room and Christmas is just two weeks away. Wondering what to get for the runner on your list? These are just a few of my favorite things: the best gifts for runners this year.

I get lots of samples from sports companies and buy plenty of gear myself. The products on this list represent my favorite clothes, gadgets and gear currently available from a range of brands. In clothing, I’ve tried the women’s versions, but many come in men’s options too. I’ve indicated which items are available for men or in unisex sizing—a full 30 of them are. And I’ve included the list prices, though you’ll find many items for less than that.

Also, if it’s been in a past gift guide of mine, I didn’t include it here. But many of the products I highlighted in the days of yore are still available. So here are my guides from 2012, 2011, and 2009.

Without further ado, it’s time to get shopping and wish-listing. Here are my favorite running jackets, layers, tights, shorts, tanks, socks, sleeves, sports bras, gadgets, books and more this year. There are nearly 50 items in all.

Best Gifts For Runners 2013

Running Jackets

Three very different options for different needs: visibility, wind and all weather. Read the rest of this entry →


12 2013

Timex Ironman Watch: Run Trainer 2.0 GPS + Sleek

Timex Ironman watch

The Timex Ironman Run Trainer 2.0 GPS (Photo: Timex)

Just in time for the holiday shopping season, I tested two Timex Ironman watches: the Timex Ironman Run Trainer 2.0 GPS and Timex Ironman Sleek 50-Lap. These reviews come after wearing the watches for more than four months while running, swimming, racing and more. Here’s how they stacked up. The full Timex Ironman watch reviews are available on my column at The Washington Times Communities.

Timex Ironman Watch

Timex Ironman Run Trainer 2.0 GPS (Photo: Timex)

Timex Ironman Watch Run Trainer 2.0 GPS

Getting started with the Timex Ironman Run Trainer 2.0 GPS really is as easy as 1-2-3.

The watch is comfortable to wear with a nicely slim profile. Its light weight of 58 grams, compared to 65.7 for its predecessor, makes it easy to wear for long runs and workouts, even for small-wristed women.

It is not the most stylish watch, but it gets points for offering an option in matte grey with bright yellow accents in addition to the basic black with orange.

The high-resolution display screen truly is crisp and as easy to use as advertised. Menu setup and navigation is straightforward and intuitive. However, the font sizes are a bit on the small side, making reading splits mid-run challenging at times. Read the rest of this entry →


11 2013

Running News: Garmin, Duck Dynasty, runDisney, MCM

In addition to this blog, I write a column at The Washington Times Communities, also called “Run, Karla, Run!” The articles there are completely different than my posts here. The column is more focused on running news, with travel and features too.

So here’s a quick look at the last few running news articles that appeared on my column:

Garmin Forerunner 620, Garmin Foreruner 220, GPS watch

Forerunner 620 and 220 (Photo: Garmin)

Garmin Debuts Two New Forerunner Watches

Garmin today announced the debut of the new Forerunner 620 and 220 GPS watches meant to help runners train to their bodies’ potential.

The Forerunner 620 will estimate a runner’s VO2 maximum, predict race finish times, dish on running form, and offer advice about when to take recovery days based on heart rate data when paired with a heart-rate monitor.

Perhaps the most exciting new feature is the 620 watch’s ability to estimate VO2 max, a rate that measures just how much oxygen an athlete can take in during a workout.


09 2013

Race Report: NYC Half Marathon 2012

nyc half, running, half marathon

The NYC Half took runners on a tour of Manhattan from Central Park through Times Square. (Photo: NYRR)

The 2012 NYC Half Marathon on Sunday, March 18 featured a new course and the largest field in the race’s history with 15,336 finishers. I was among them, trying to accomplish a personal feat: tackle two half-marathons in three weeks and three half-marathons in three months without getting injured.

To accomplish this task, I turned to a new gadget to help me train: the new MOTOACTV GPS and MP3 all in one. I served as a MOTOACTV NYC Half Marathon Ambassador, training and running the race with the device.

The Course

The NYC Half Marathon gave runners a challenging, but scenic tour of Manhattan. Even as a New Yorker who knows the course well, I thoroughly enjoyed running from Central Park through Times Square and down to the historic South Street Seaport.

The first six miles comprised one full loop of Central Park with its grueling rolling hills. Runners exited the park just after the 10K mark, racing down Seventh Avenue through the heart of Times Square before turning right onto 42nd Street for the next two miles. Miles 8 through 12 carried runners along the West Side Highway into New York’s Chelsea, West Village and Tribeca neighborhoods before rounding the southern tip of Manhattan into the Seaport for the finish. Read the rest of this entry →


03 2012

Giving MOTOACTV a Test Run at the NYC Half Marathon

NYC Half Marathon, MOTOACTV

MOTOACTV by Motorola is a GPS watch and MP3 player all in one. (Photo: MOTOACTV)

On March 18, I’ll be running the NYC Half, a 13.1-mile tour of Manhattan from Central Park through Times Square that finishes at South Street Seaport. Not only am I running the race, but I am also one of four MOTOACTV NYC Half Marathon Ambassadors.

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be training with MOTOACTV, the official entertainment partner of the NYC Half, a race organized by New York Road Runners. MOTOACTV is a new dual GPS fitness tracker and MP3 player all-in-one made by Motorola. I’ll be giving the device some test runs and running the race with it.

MOTOACTV, provided to me by Motorola, is the first GPS device I’ve ever owned. I’ve been a GPS holdout for a few years for three main reasons. Read the rest of this entry →


03 2012

Product Watch: Nike+ SportWatch GPS with TomTom

nike+ sportwatch gpsIt’s what Nike+ users have been waiting for—a Nike+ watch with GPS. Powered by TomTom, the new Nike+ SportWatch GPS is sure to give Garmin and the other wrist bots an, ahem, run for their money.

Nike is rolling out the red carpet for their newest Nike+ product. The watch uses both the familiar Nike+ shoe sensor and TomTom’s GPS technology to track runs. Users can then upload their runs to via a built-in USB connector in the watch’s strap. New features on will map and track runs, including time, pace, distance, calories burned, heart rate and elevation.

The watch will even serve as your Jiminy Cricket if you need one; automatic reminders magically appear when you haven’t logged a run for five days. Read the rest of this entry →


01 2011

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