This year saw Polar launch their highly anticipated Grit X multisport watch. Boasting a whole host of functions you would expect for a multisport watch, there are some additions that watch tech competitors don’t have that make this device interesting.
Polar have been around since 1977, born out of a necessity for measuring heart rate in Cross Country skiing, they developed and patented the first wireless heart rate monitor, developing into bikes and watch technology afterwards. This makes them the longest wearable tech company in the game.
The Grit X is their top model. It has all the usual things you would expect from a GPS mulisports watch: accurate GPS recording, mapping and compass, a hefty battery life (extendable by reducing some of the many functions).
It is lightweight and extremely robust, without looking unnecessarily big and chunky. Perfectly wearable outside of sporting activities. It also has an hourly weather forecast, handy for planning that run to avoid the rain.
The key thing that makes the watch alluring is the price point. It comes in over £100 cheaper than other brand alternatives. Here are my top 5 features:
1. Battery life
As you would expect with a watch targeted at Ultra running, the battery life is strong. It’s automatically set up for around 50 hours of activity tracking. Heavy users of sports watches will know that things like continual heart rate tracking, and synced notifications can affect battery life.
The Grit X has an ultra function that can track up to 100 hours of activity. It does this by reducing the tracking points, thus extending the watches recordable like. Handy for those 100 milers!
2. Smart Coach
The watch can be used to inform your training, and this feature had some interesting aspects. If hill training is your thing, the “Hill Splitter” automatically detects all uphills and downhills. It shows you detailed insights into your performance by using information gathered from your speed, heart races and ascent/ decent and speed you are running.
Another handy tool for ultra runners. You can set your watch to remind you when to take on some nutrition. It will notify you that you need to take on calories, and more than that, after each run, breaks down the energy burned into fats/carbs/ and proteins for you.
4. Daily Workouts “Fit Spark”
If you are anything like me, the cross training is something done better with direction and instruction. The Grit X has built in exercises, so you can set the device to give yourself a workout.
The watch then demonstrates the exercise (by way of an animated stick man doing the exercise) and counting you down the intervals and rest periods. There are different ones to choose from, and they will be catered for you based on fitness & training history.
5. Accompanying App
Sure the watch can be great, but if the App that goes with it is not good, then it can be detrimental to the watch. I have in the past have used some apps which just have not been up to scratch, including had activities that have taken forever to upload to Strava. However the Polar App is excellent.
Want to delve in deeper to your sleep patterns? Want a more detailed heart rate history? Need to tweak the widgets to your exact preference? Re-select the top types of exercises on the watch? Switch watch face? Its all there on the app. Really straightforward and intuitive to use and super quick and easy.
There are lots of other features to explore on the device, such as Live Strava Segments, and even a breathing/meditation setting called “Serene” and built in fitness tests, the Polar Grit X is great value for money and a super smart watch.