AT A GLANCE: QUICK RATINGS
Heart Rate Functions
Fitness / Sport Features
Ease of Use
Where To Get It
A Deep Dive Into TomTom Runner
This unit was released in 2013 and has been superseded by the Runner Cardio with built-in (off the wrist) heart rate monitor and also the Runner 2 with built-in MUSIC storage and again by the Runner 3 (Spark 3) … However, If you don’t want or need activity tracking then the Runner Cardio still offers good value for money.
Who Is It For?
The TomTom Runner is for the active person who wants to monitor speed and distance when out running. The Runner has optional heart rate from a traditional HRM strap. Remember, there is also a TomTom Runner Cardio with built-in heart rate sensor, removing the need for the external HRM strap. It’s an easy to use watch with all the essential features you’d expect from a serious runners watch.
Main Features and Functions
It’s a great unit for under £100 and competes well with other products like the Forerunner 220 and Polar RC3. There are several key features that stand out on this particular model. As a runner who wears glasses in the day I am particularly fond of an extra large display. I found the high contrast display clear and easy to read in all light conditions. Another favourite feature is the one button control. Unlike other watches with buttons around the outside of the case, the TomTom Runner has a simple to use toggle switch. Moving around the functions of the watch is easy and intuitive. Simply press up-down-left-right to move through menus.
The INTERNAL accelerometer is also a great feature. When running indoors on a treadmill you still have access to speed and distance data from a built-in sensor that accurately measures your running performance when no GPS signal is available.
Quick Fix GPS Technology
No one likes hanging around in the rain waiting for your GPS to synchronize. The Runner uses QuickFix technology to ensure a quicker syncing of the GPS satellites. All you need to do is dock your watch regularly (every 3 days) and your TomTom will know where the satellites are without the need to search for them. What this means, is no need to pretend to be stretching while you wait for the GPS signal to settle…. within less than a minute your watch should be synced and ready to run.
After a run you can pop it in your RACE BANK. Next to you run the same route you can compare your current run with past performances. The TomTom will let you see in “real-time” where you are compared to your stored RACE. This is a great way to motivate yourself running the same local route.
The best way to keep motivated is to set an achievable Goal. This competent runner’s watch let’s you set a goal based on distance, time or calorie goal. While you run you can check your progress in a full screen graphics. You will get GOAL ALERTS as you run, when you’re halfway there, almost finished and when you have achieved your goal.
The Runner allows you to train at either Heart Rate Zone or a Pace Zone. Training at the correct intensity is an important part of the improvement progress. Sometimes you should be training at demanding zones, but a lot of the time you MUST train at a recovery / steady pace (or HR zone, eg zone 1-2). The TomTom Runner will let you see if you are in the right training zone.
*Heart Rate Monitor, optional accessory
The very best way to improve speed and cardio fitness is by incorporating interval training in to your sessions. The Runner has got this covered. Start with a sensible and controlled warm up, then alternate between bursts of high and low intensity exercise as many times as you like, and finish with a cool down. Each interval can be either a fixed time or distance.
Related Article: Tomtom Touch Review, is it a great activity tracker?
TomTom Runner Specification from the Manufacturer
Run with a lightweight watch designed for runners. The slim design comfortably fits all wrist sizes.
Stay focused on your run with vibration alerts. Hear beeps and feel vibrations to get milestone, lap and interval alerts, even when listening to your music.
Run with a durable, scratch-resistant display. Super-tough scratch and impact-resistant display stays easy to read, run after run.
Track your run indoors and on a treadmill. The TomTom Runner’s built-in sensors count your strides so you can monitor your pace and distance. No extra foot pod required.
Train more efficiently. A stop watch can be a useful tool to help you time various routines and improve your performance.
Waterproof up to 50 metres (165 feet) / 5ATM
Run in all kinds of weather. The TomTom Runner is waterproof up to 50 meters (165 feet) / 5ATM and as weather-ready as you are.
Get out on your run faster. QuickGPSFix helps your watch find your precise location quickly so you can start your run.
With the latest in GPS and GLONASS satellite receiver technology, you are sure to get a fast start to your run.
Up-to 10 Hour Battery Life [GPS Mode]
Run more, recharge less, with up to 10-hour battery life [GPS Mode], and up to 30 days on a single charge with normal watch use.
Sync, analyze and share your stats on popular running sites or apps. Easily upload information about your runs to track progress against your goals.
With compatibility across a broad range of online running community platforms, you can choose where you store your statistics.
TomTom MySports Mobile App
Sync your TomTom Sport Watch automatically. Use the TomTom MySports mobile app to easily upload and access your key activity information without connecting to a computer.
Charge and sync your watch. The Desk Dock connects to your PC or Mac easily, quickly and reliably. Connect to sensors using the latest wireless technology. The TomTom Runner uses Bluetooth Smart Technology to connect to the TomTom Heart Rate Monitor* and other compatible Bluetooth Smart accessories.
*Heart Rate Monitor Optional accessory
TomTom are constantly working to update and produce new software updates to make your GPS Watch better with tweaks and new features.
Next Model UP
The next model up is the Runner Cardio for those who want heart rate monitoring WITHOUT a chest strap. For the customer who may also have an interest in other sports, then we would recommend the MULTISPORT version. It’s not a true multisport GPS watch like the Polar V800 or Forerunner 920XT as you cannot change sport in the middle of ONE FILE.. however, for the person who RUNS, BIKES and SWIMS and does NOT need all the data in ONE FILE, then it’s a great option.
We do say this quite a lot, but these GPS sports watches are so well designed it is hard to level criticism at them, even if it’s constructively meant. We loved the TomTom Runner and it is refreshing to have some competent alternative to the Garmin Forerunner range. The TomTom Runner is easy to use, accurate, slim and, above all else, an effective training tool. If you like the style and design of the TomTom range, but think you are going to use Heart Rate a lot, then we would STRONGLY suggest you consider the CARDIO version with built-in HRM from the wrist. Also, it would be useful to have an Get Me Home GPS mode, something you will find in products like the Polar M400.
Related Article: Tomtom Spark 3 Review, The Best Running Watch?