Best Garmin Watches for Female Runners

In the past, fitness watches tend to come in a particular design to accommodate the parts and pieces that they required. They used to be bulky, a bit tacky, and more often than not, targeted towards the male audience. But thanks to modern technology, fitness watches no longer have to compromise their style for function and practicality. 

As more and more women are getting into the sport of running, companies are quickly realizing the importance of making more designs for their female audience. When it comes to style, Garmin is undeniably one of the most popular brands that create beautiful watches for female runners. But don’t get us wrong – it’s not all for the sake of fashion and pleasing aesthetics. 

Garmin knows that creating watches for female runners can result in a better performance. Below is a list of watches from Garmin which are, in our opinion, the best watches for female runners. Have a look and see which ones fit your unique and personal style. 

8 Best Garmin Watches for Female Runners 

#1 Garmin Forerunner 35

If clean and simple is your style, then there’s plenty of reasons why you should get the Garmin Forerunner 35. First of all, its white and minimalistic design is perfect for those who are searching for something low-key. Mixing and matching your outfits is a breeze with this stylish watch – who says fitness watches should just look sporty? It’s not hard to fall in love with this modern masterpiece but if the design did not steal your heart away, perhaps its hardware can.

In our opinion, the best feature of the Garmin Forerunner 35 is its larger screen. We know how popular watches with larger faces are but most of them tend to be uncomfortable to wear for most women. The Forerunner 35 has a 44% larger screen than the average Garmin watch and yet it still fits users with smaller hands and wrists perfectly.

The larger screen on Forerunner 35 is also a great feature to enjoy all that the watch can offer. It measures your heart rate through a wrist-based system and displays your results on its beautiful 215 x 180-pixel display. This watch works hard 24/7 and it even keeps 200 hours of activity within your history data. And if you’re worried that it might drain your batteries – no worries, the Garmin Forerunner 35 can survive through 12 weeks in watch mode and 12 hours in training mode.

PROS

  • Sports a neat and clean design; fits perfectly for women
  • Comes with a wide and vibrant display that is easy to read
  • Uses a reliable wrist-based system to track heart rate and activities

CONS

  • Troublesome interval settings; requires careful setup
  • Relies on Bluetooth connectivity; no Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Difficult to switch between units of measurements

#2 Garmin Forerunner 235

The Garmin Forerunner 235 is eye candy with its youthful colors and modern display so it’s easy to understand why it is a popular choice among the younger crowd. But if you’re not a big fan of the pastel mint green or the bold red and black combo, then the all-black Forerunner 235 might be right up your alley. Either way, we think this watch is the best in terms of simplicity and intuitive design. All the information you need is on the watch!

Like the Forerunner 35, the Garmin Forerunner 235 is all about the screen and its super accurate heart sensor. Like most Garmin watches, the Forerunner 235 also has a wrist-based heart rate system and a beautiful vibrant display. It is compatible with your smartphone as well so you won’t miss any important notifications such as urgent calls or texts, calendar reminders, and incoming mail.

But what I love most about the Forerunner 235 is its lengthy battery life. In training mode, the Forerunner 235 can last up to 12 hours and if it’s in watch mode, it could go through 12 long weeks with no problem. In short, this is the watch to get if you’re looking for something youthful and reliable at the same time.

PROS

  • Comes in a more youthful design with beautiful color options
  • Comfortable to wear and easy to set up; has an intuitive display
  • Lengthy battery life: 12 hours in training mode and 12 weeks in watch mode

CONS

  • Difficult to navigate the brightness settings
  • Has issues connecting to the Garmin app

#3 Garmin Forerunner 645

Here’s a fitness watch that fits right in the workplace; it matches your pantsuit and pencil skirts just fine without inviting the extra attention. The Garmin Forerunner 645 may be a sports watch but without taking a second look, you could easily mistake it for a formal timepiece – perfect for the working woman!

Interestingly, we also recommend Garmin Forerunner 645 for female runners who love to enjoy a bit of music while working out. This watch can carry up to 500 of your favorite workout tunes. With its Bluetooth connectivity, users can easily enjoy their music through Bluetooth-ready headphones – say hello to phone-free listening!

And that’s not all, this watch was made specifically for runners as well. It features advanced running dynamics such as ground contact time balance, vertical ratio, stride length, and many more! Plus, it even has a GPS system built-in so you can also track your location.

PROS

  • Elegant and sophisticated; perfect for the office
  • Can hold up to 500 songs and can be used with Bluetooth headphones
  • Made for runners; tracks and records advanced running dynamics

CONS

  • Shorter battery life – 7 days in smartwatch mode and 5 hours in GPS mode with music
  • The initial setup is a bit difficult to get through
  • Bluetooth connectivity is quite low

#4 Garmin vívosmart HR+

The Garmin Vivosmart HR+ is the watch to get for those who love a slimmer design. It’s sophisticated and elegant at the same time. But it is also low-key, comfortable to wear all day, and it doesn’t get in the way of your workout.

Although this watch isn’t made specifically for running, it accommodates a variety of sports which is perfect for users with an active lifestyle – particularly for the swimmers! The Garmin Vivosmart HR+ isn’t just swim-friendly, it also measures your steps, calories, heart rate, and the intensity of your activities for the day. And with the watch’s built-in GPS system, users can also track their distance and pace which is perfect for runners who like to plan their run or walk. In short, it packs everything you need and more from a fitness watch.

We also love the Garmin Connect Mobile connectivity. With this system, you can participate in fitness challenges, review the data of your progress, and also receive coaching tips at the same time. Users can also receive notifications whether it’s a call, a text message, or an update from a social media platform.

PROS

  • Simple, straight-forward, and requires little maintenance for upkeep
  • Accommodates a wide variety of sports, most especially swimming
  • Has the ability to receive important notifications from your phone

CONS

  • Not as durable as other options in this list
  • Frequent inaccuracies with “stairs climbed” data
  • Does not have the longest battery life

#5 Garmin vívomove Sport

If you’re looking for a fitness watch that looks nothing like all the other smartwatches out there, then we think you might love the Garmin Vivomove Sport. Without taking a closer look, it is impossible to tell that it is a fitness watch. Its face resembles a traditional timepiece and its design complements its elegance and sophistication. It is basically the best watch to get if you would like to wear your fitness watch to a formal event.

But don’t get us wrong – its appearance is just one of the reasons why you should consider getting the watch. What we loved most about it is its super-long battery life. The Garmin Vivomotive sport can live up to 1 whole year without having to recharge! That’s a lot of power considering it tracks all your steps and the distances you’ve traveled. We also like how users can personalize their step goals every day which is a great way to boost fitness motivation.

PROS

  • Sports a clean and classic design; does not look like a smartwatch
  • Has 1 whole year of batter life – not re-charging required
  • Features accurate step tracking and the ability to personalize step goals daily

CONS

  • Lacks plenty of advanced fitness trackers
  • Gets scratched easily
  • May not be the best option for users with very small hands or wrists

#6 Garmin Fēnix 5s

Watches with bigger faces are very trendy nowadays. So if you’re on the lookout for a watch that can measure up to today’s fashion standards, then you might want to check out the Garmin Fenix 5s. This sleek and elegant watch is more than what it seems. We love how simplistic and modern the design is, but don’t be fooled by its minimalist appearances. The Garmin Fenix 5s has a lot to offer on its plate.

First, this watch comes with the Garmin Elevate wrist-based heart rate technology which promises accurate tracking and reading of all your physical activities. Although the Garmin Fenix 5s was not made specifically for running, users can use its preloaded activity profiles to match their type of sport. The built-in GPS system with GLONASS satellite reception is a great addition to track not only the distances you’ve covered but also your current location.

The watch’s outdoor sensors come with a gyroscope and barometric altimeter which can be beneficial for runners who are concerned about the weather and their running environment. We also love how the watch displays everything you need intuitively – no need to push extra buttons or toggle settings to see the data you need. If you ask us, the Garmin Fenix 5s is the best option if you’re looking for something that looks simple but has everything you need.

PROS

  • Has longer battery life than most: 9 days in smartwatch mode and 14 hours with GPS
  • Comes with the signature Garmin Elevate wrist-based heart rate technology
  • Features a built-in GPS system with GLONASS satellite reception

CONS

  • The bands are not the most durable ones on a watch
  • The display is not very bright; reliable on the watch’s auto-backlit function

#7 Garmin vívosmart 3

Did you know that the Garmin Vivosmart 3 is the thinnest HR-equipped fitness tracker in the Garmin catalog? It is said to be 4mm thinner than most watches in the Vivosmart line. A thinner watch such as the Vivosmart 3 is perfect for runners who do not want to feel as if they were wearing a watch. We understand that not a lot of people enjoy wearing watches while they work out, and if you’re one of them, perhaps this watch is the best option for you.

One might think that there aren’t a lot of features on this watch simply because of how thin it looks. But as they say, never judge anything by its appearances alone. This slim timepiece measures VO2 Max which is said to be a reliable and accurate measure of one’s aerobic fitness.

Interestingly, this watch also monitors your stress levels so you’d know when it’s time to take it easy and rest from working out. Additionally, the Garmin Vivosmart 3 also tracks your strength training activities, from counting sets and reps to determining rest times – all you need from a personal coach, the Garmin Vivosmart 3 can offer.

PROS

  • Sports a simple and thin design – perfect for users with smaller hands and wrists
  • Measures VO2 Max, a super reliable measure for aerobic fitness
  • Tracks not only strength training but also manages stress levels

CONS

  • The material is not very durable
  • The display is unreadable under direct sunlight

Buyer’s Guide

On the surface, one might think that buying a watch for female runners is a simple task; that all you have to do is to pick out a design that tracks physical activity. But as you know, the wide variety of watches available makes the shopping process a little more than just a simple stroll in the mall. There’s more to watches than just its appearances and features. Below is a simple buying guide to help you find the best Garmin watch for female runners. 

Find the Right Size 

Watches for female runners weren’t created just to add more feminine designs to a shop’s inventory. Female hands and wrists tend to be smaller so one design definitely does not fit all. Although there are plenty of unisex watches that offer a lot of room for adjustments and customization, it is still best to choose a design that fits perfectly. 

That being said, choosing a watch for women is more than just finding a ladylike design, it’s about sizing. Watches with bigger faces are trendy nowadays but the size can often get in the way, making them uncomfortable to wear. The good news is, finding a perfect-sized watch isn’t that difficult. Just try them on, make sure that it’s tight enough so that it is kept in place 

Determine Its Purpose 

As a female runner, it’s not enough to have a watch that looks good – it should also do the job it set out to do. But how can you tell whether it’s doing a good job or not if you aren’t sure what it is for? When buying a watch, remember to keep a list of features you want the watch to have. 

Perhaps you’re looking for something simple and straightforward? Or maybe you’d like to connect your watch to your smartphone to keep yourself notified with calls and messages? Most watches don’t come cheap so you’d want to get the best value for your money. Knowing what your needs are is the first step to finding your perfect watch. 

Aim for Versatility 

If your goal is to live a more active lifestyle, then a fitness watch may be a great source of motivation. But if you’re not wearing your watch very often, then it defeats its purpose so why not get a watch that looks great no matter what the occasion is?

A simple yet elegant design, for example, is great for those who work in an office. On the other hand, those who are looking for a more youthful look can opt for something that’s minimalistic and modern instead. 

At the end of the day, the most important thing to remember is to find a watch that stays with you through all your adventures. As a female runner, your style may change and so will your lifestyle but if you choose a watch that can be worn at any time, you can continue to stay on top of your fitness goals.