For serious runners, GPS running watches have become an integral and useful part of the daily workout. Something that should be considered, as well, is the usefulness of using these watches to monitor cycling sessions as well.
While not all athletes are equally serious about running and cycling, the combination of the two is still quite popular. This is especially true of those training for a duathlon, or just looking to add variety to their daily exercise routine.
Some of the watches leading in the market come with attachments and accessories to make them versatile enough for bicycle use. For instance, the foot pod feature for running to measure stride length can be adapted for cycling use to measure pedal cadence. Having a digitally recorded and mapped report of the whole ride’s cadence provides essential information for competitive cyclers looking to improve their performance.
Other information recorded by some GPS running watches that is easily adapted to a cycling regimen is heart rate monitoring. Most high end watches come with (or are compatible with) a heart rate monitor in the form of a belt.
These belts are specifically designed to be comfortable enough to wear while running and cycling. They wirelessly transmit the pulse information to the wrist (or handlebar) display for instant feedback on how your body is responding.
This information is also recorded and included in the post-ride report that’s automatically analyzed when you plug the display into your computer at home. In fact, everything from distance, time, speed, heart rate, cadence (or stride length) is all analyzed together.
This means that GPS running watches don’t just help you see where you’ve been and how fast you’ve gone. They can show you how your heart rate and cycling cadence responded to changes in your route. Because the GPS signal (in some watches, not all) also records changes in altitude, you can see exactly how going up a hill impacts the way you ride and the way your body responds.
While these watches are more popular for runners, there is a strong segment of cycling use. Stationary bikes have long recorded this type of information, and those who enjoy riding outdoors and covering actual distance should be able to take advantage of technological development, and this type of watch certainly helps them do so.