Garmin Forerunner 405 Has Workout Staying Power

January 27, 2009 | Erik Miller | Comments 0

By Erik Miller

Automatic sync, wireless data sharing, and who doesn’t want a high sensitivity receiver? If you’re looking for a hotter training partner, you won’t get any better that the Garmin Forerunner 405.

forerunner405-lfThe Forerunner 405 is a GPS-enabled sport watch that’s designed for training. It shares your stats with your PC for analysis . . . and let’s face it, for personal gratification, too.

So why this watch, right now? First announced about a year ago, it turns out the Forerunner 405 has staying power, and more importantly, Garmin says it will release fully Mac-compatible software for it sometime between now and the end of March. Yeah, it’s taken a while, but back when Garmin was developing the Forerunner 405, Apple wasn’t kicking butt and taking names like the company is now.

Besides, it’s got a touch bezel for slide and tap operation — hard not to like that.

More Than GPS, More Than Heart Rate

What if you’ve already got a watch that tells your heart rate? Well, that’s a good start, but if you want to move to the wicked cool level you require a bit more. For personal stats, the Forerunner 405 monitors your time, distance, pace, calories, and heart rate. Not bad. The real power of this life-enhancing tool is when you pair it with your PC (Mac owners have been using Parallels Desktop for Mac and VMware Fusion) and a couple of accessories. You do want that six pack, right?

forerunner405-rfIn addition to the sleeker overall design, what separates the Garmin Forerunner 405 from others, like the Timex IRONMAN Triathlon Bodylink Trail Runner, are the accessories and software features that go with the training-focused Forerunner 405. For instance, for the truly competitive, you can record courses and then compete against your previous times or even race against a virtual partner and then share it on Garmin’s online community for bragging rights.

Garmin has incorporated ANT+ Sport wireless technology, which automatically transfers data to your computer when the Forerunner is in range. Not stopping there, the Forerunner 405 can also transfer data with other Forerunners. The good thing about this is that you can share courses and workouts with your friends. The bad? The GPS might reveal to your buddies that your four mile route is closer to 3.5.

For inside training, you can use the optional Garmin Foot Pod. The Foot Pod will track your cadence, as well as speed and distance when a GPS signal is not available. And yes, there is also a speed/cadence bike sensor. Good thing the Forerunner 405 is water resistant. Just putting this on makes you want to work harder.

How-To Videos

Plus, most compact gadgets like the Forerunner 405 can be a pain to learn how to use — Garmin, though, has stepped up and posted 18 videos online that show how to use the Forerunner 405. Nice.

There are multiple geographic versions but the entry level runs $299.00 and the fully tricked out version (includes the heart rate monitor) is $349.00. Comes in two colors — black or light green.

Filed Under: Gear


About the Author: Erik Miller is a contributing writer for, as well as an IT project manager for a Fortune 500 tech company. A former Marine, Erik once had to navigate across a desert at night with a broken flashlight. A glowing watch face provided just enough illumination to get the job done -- it's the kind of experience that makes a guy appreciate technology. To contact him, try firstname.lastname@ . . . etc.

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