Garmin Forerunner 245 Review

At a Glance: Quick Ratings



Heart Rate




Ease of Use


Where To Get It

A Deep Dive Into Garmin Forerunner 245

Watches in the Garmin Forerunner series are runners’ smartwatches, but which one is right for you?

Garmin has come out with two models of its mid-range Forerunner 245 watch, a running watch; and a music and running watch in the Forerunner 245 Music.

Garmin added features to this smartwatch that one would find in more expensive, higher-end smartwatches, like the ELEVATE V3 optic sensor wrist Heart Rate Monitor.

The two smartwatches are essentially the same Garmin high quality and reliability, the 245 Music has WiFi connectivity and music storage, while the Forerunner focuses more on GPS. Both watches are loaded with tracking, heart rate monitoring, stress, and sleep tracking features you will love. 

With the Garmin forerunner 245 Music, you can download up to 500 of your favorite songs using WiFi and take your music with you. Pair your Bluetooth headphones to your watch, hit “play” and you are ready to run. You can leave your smartphone behind.

  • Who Is It For?

  • Video Review

  • Pros

  • Cons

So you are a serious runner (maybe not yet a professional athlete), who is ready for the next step up in their sports smartwatch. The Garmin Forerunner 295 watch (with or without built-in Music) can help you train for that 5K to marathon, and gets you ready for beyond.

The small difference in price seems worth it. This Forerunner has pool swimming modes, as well as other indoor fitness activities like yoga, strength training, indoor biking, treadmill, Cardio, etc. My only drawback is the Garmin Forerunner 295 and 295 Music does not come in an S version for smaller wrists.

What’s in the Box ?

Watch, Garmin four-prong charger, Quick use Manual

Main Features and Functions

  • Your battery will last generally 7 days and 24 hours in GPS mode, a nice twelve-hour upgrade from the Garmin Forerunner 45. However with the Forerunner 245 Music, that drops to 6 hours if you are using GPS and Music. Chances are you will finish your run or workout long before your battery runs out.
  • Water resistant up to 50 meters
  • Built in GPS, and to improve accuracy in tracking it receives multi-satellite networking through Galileo network support and GLONASS.
  • ELEVATE V3 wrist based Heart Rate Monitor
  • Incident Detection: Garmin added this feature to the Forerunner 245 and up models. If you have an accident such as a fall during your run, you can trigger this manually on your smartwatch to let others know you need help. It will share your location with your chosen emergency contacts. This feature requires your smartphone to connect to Garmin Connect App.
  • Body Battery: keeps you informed of your energy levels throughout the day, so you can plan your longer or more strenuous workouts.
  • Evaluates your training to help indicate if you are under or overdoing your intensity during your workout.
  • Garmin Coach helps you customize and adapt your training routine. It was developed by actual running coaches. It is a free coaching system at your fingertips. It can tweak your workouts based on your performance.
  • Advanced running information like your stride length, ground contact time, balance and vertical ratio.
  • Customized, free watch face, and more from Garmin Connect IQ store.
  • Replaceable straps, be sure you have a small Phillips head screwdriver, some straps come with one and Youtube has simple videos to help when you need to replace a strap.
  • PulseOx for Pulse oximeter measurement/tracking to help track your oxygen levels at higher altitudes.
  • Bread crumb training course navigation (For more hiking related smartwatch check out the Garmin Instinct).
  • Pool swimming including drills and workouts. Waterproof up to 50 meters so you can shower and run in the rain as well as swim but not dive with it.
  • Temperature and altitude
  • UltraTrac mode for 24 hour + GPS battery life
  • Clock face resolution 240 x 240, watch face fully customizable to make it yours.
  • Band colors are Slate and Amp Yellow for the Garmin Forerunner 245, and Red Lava and Aqua for the Garmin Forerunner 245 Music
  • Dimensions 45 x 45 x 11.7 mm. Display 31.1 mm diameter
  • It does not track stairs because it does not have a barometric altimeter but it can track almost everything else.
  • Counts your daily steps, stress levels, and sleep, with more advanced sleep tracking than the Forerunner 45.
  • It tracks total hours of sleep, deeper and more shallow sleep levels, and waking up during your sleep.
  • Notifications, messages, emails, calendar
  • No multisport mode or open water swim monitoring,  so if you need triathlon monitoring seriously consider the Garmin Forerunner 945 model.
  • You can customize data fields on your screen so you can monitor what you want to see.
  • If you plan on hiking with this smartwatch or adventuring you may want to add protective tempered glass to protect your investment.

Final Verdict

This watch is really exceptional. It can give you a holistic view of your fitness, with all its running features, heart rate monitoring, and sleep and stress tracking.

If you can forego Garmin Pay, maps, some storage space, and more battery life while keeping some extra money in your pocket then check this really smart smartwatch. 

The Garmin Forerunner 245 or the Forerunner 245 Music may become your next smartwatch. I think the added Music and WiFi ability is worth it.

How does this differ from the Garmin Forerunner 945 Triathalon Smartwatch?

For starters, the 945 has full maps available, more storage space, can hold 1000 songs, more in navigation and customization, and lets you modulate between different fitness activities with more ease. 

Andrew Wyatt

Andrew Wyatt

Andrew Wyatt has been a tech geek for as long as he can remember. Whether it's laptops, cameras, or projects, he's obsessed with it all. When he's not researching the latest tech products, he likes to go on long hikes with his dogs.

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