Published on September 27, 2013
Timex Ironman Global Trainer
Timex can be incredibly variable – in more ways than one – when it comes to their GPS offerings and despite being highly anticipated when it launch (particularly by triathletes) the Timex Ironman Global Trainer is one that RunningMonkey certainly found rather lacking…
At £300 it’s tipping the top end of cost for a GPS, but on paper at least it does offer an impressive array of features. There are five workout screens (run, bike, swim, plus 2 customizable) and the Timex has the ability to handle transition times between disciplines. Each screen can be customised to display up to four separate sets of data – for example pace, heart rate, elapsed time, etc. The device is also water resistant up to a depth of 50m and although this seems impressive, here’s the rub: it loses all satellite connection and heart rate monitoring once submerged. They seems odd enough for a GPS designed not just for running, but specifically for triathlon, where (correct us if we’re wrong) there’s water involved. It gets odder: Timex suggest that you hit any of the 1million buttons – might be less, but feels like 1million – at your peril. We didn’t dare try for fear of unspecified peril.
How about as a straight run GPS? Acquiring a satellite connection proved a tedious affair, with long waits and a couple of reboots required to pick up anything at all. Testing it against a pretty antiquated Garmin Forerunner 205 the Timex took, on average, four times longer to pick up a signal. Once acquired though the Timex seems to hold signal well but struggles in both built-up and heavily wooed areas – on one test run we recorded an impressive sounding 7500foot of elevation gain, around ten times what we know to be accurate.
Timex, here you have disappointed us. The Timex Ironman Global Trainer promises so much and delivers (poorly) so little. Such a substantial GPS, like strapping a breezeblock to your arm, that you really want it to man-up and be as tough as the Ironman tag. It just doesn’t and isn’t.