PROS / Since the battery isn’t rechargeable, this watch’s coin cell battery lasts up to two years before needing to be replaced.
CONS / This watch doesn’t have Bluetooth capabilities or an app for storing and checking on your data.
VERDICT / If you’re only interested in real-time heart rate results, the Timex Ironman Road Trainer is a good option for long-term wear.
The Timex Ironman Road Trainer is a traditional heart rate monitor watch, with a chest strap and a watch to display your heart rate. Since it doesn’t track your heart rate directly from the watch wristband, it’s both more accurate and less comfortable.
This heart rate monitor uses a chest strap to accurately track your heart rate, average heart rate and percent of maximum heart rate, which are displayed on a watch you wear on your wrist. While most heart rate watches these days have technology to detect your heart rate built in to the watch itself, the Ironman Road Trainer does not. However, the chest strap is better equipped to give you an accurate reading, and we found its accuracy level to be above 95 percent during testing.
The large traditional watch face screen is a bit bulky and weighs in as the heaviest on our lineup at 54 grams. This watch is hard plastic and doesn’t conform to the shape of your wrist like silicone straps do. We found it jostled up and down during runs on both small and large wrists during testing. Buttons on the sides help you navigate menu items, but we found them a bit confusing to learn to navigate. Still, it’s nice to have so much information all in one place. When in workout mode, the watch keeps your heart rate front and center on the display, and it is very easy to read. The workout summary is great as well, displaying information like active minutes, average heart rate, peak heart rate, calories and more.
While this watch’s best quality is its 24-month battery, its worst quality is that it doesn’t have built-in Bluetooth. The battery lasts so long because it doesn’t relay information back and forth with your phone. Because it doesn’t have an app, you give up data history, easy access, custom features and more when you purchase this heart rate monitor. When the battery dies, you replace it with a coin cell that can last for another two years.
This watch would be better if it was Bluetooth ready and was compatible with fitness apps, but it’s still an accurate way to track your heart rate during exercise. Neither the strap nor the wrist watch are especially comfortable, but exercise isn’t always comfortable either, and both are designed to be worn during short-term activities, not all day.