Battery life issue/new watch recommendations?

Hi, Many thanks for any help in advance. I ran a 'personal' ie unorganised, just me doing a set route ultra distance last week- 14th July at my mum's in Spain. I ran 40.3 miles in 6 hours 46 minutes and 12 seconds. Problem was though, my garmin forerunner 410 (which is 3 years old) ran out of battery at 5 hours 30. Luckily I heard the beep and started the endomondo tracker on my phone straightaway so could combine the two 'seperate' runs on the site to show it was in fact one continuous run. Thus, I'm in the market for a watch that'll last the distance (excuse the pun). Obviously I'm looking at battery life so the two I'm looking at are the garmin fenix 3 and suunto ambit 3 run because of their battery lives. But they have lots of other functions like skiing etc so can anyone recommend a watch that is really just for running. I really liked my 410, but I need the extra hours battery life. Not too keen on huge watches. Top end range would be 300-400 quid. Any advice would be really appreciated. image


  • Fenix 3 is great. One day you might want to ski....image
  • Lol! Thanks. It's a garmin too so i suppose my ant stick for the 420 would be a back up and I've already got my computer set up for it.

    The reviews seem to suggest its a bit chunkier than usual- but then again so was my 410, so I'm wondering if this is just in relation to normal wrist watches. Plus it's under 300!

    Swaying towards it. Thanks!
  • Check out DCRainmaker for all things tecchy.

    I've got baby wrists and I don't think the watch looks too big. If you put an elegant face on it then it passes for a dress watch - a lot of running watches just shout RUNNING WAAAATCH at you.

    Nice work on the ultra btw.
  • Thanks for the tip!- just had a look. Think I'll get that next pay day, though I also need new trainers, so gonna be a pricey month for kit update!

    Thanks- I was pleasantly surprised by the time- had never ran further than a marathon before.

    Hoping I might be able you get back out and head inland later in the year!
  • Have you thought about buying a powercharger and charge your FR 410 on the run? I use this method with my Timex Runtrainer 2. It does not work with all watches though, as some resets or the screen blacks out. 

  • Hi, thanks for the response. Yeah, that was my plan. I took a powerbar as I thought it likely that the battery would run out- but forgot the charging lead!

    Thing is though, the charging lead fits on to the watch like a 'claw' So wouldn't have been very practical.

    The 410 will do me for usual distances at the moment but I'll have to update my watch.

    Thanks for your reply!
  • booktrunkbooktrunk ✭✭✭

    Fenix 3 is great, can be had quite cheaply as well if you hunt around. 

    Suunto ambit 3 should be seriously going down in price as the replacement range Suunto Spartan are out next month.

    an understated gem for up to around 9-10 hours is the Epson 810

    the older garmins like the 910xt aren't to bulky can do 18 hours and can be recharged on the go. Don't consider the x20 series from Garmin these cannot be charged on the go.

    fenix 2 can be very cheap, but it's nothing like the 3, it's display is just not as good. But it does the job. 

    Suunto Spartan Ultra out next month does 16 hours with non stop GPS signal, 26 hours with a check once a second, and 65 hours checking once a minute.


  • Nice one, thanks for the info! Will have a look at all the watches. It'll probably be in about a month's before I buy it, so price may make the difference between the suunto and fenix 3.

    Thanks again!
  • Just to add,

    I  emailed suunto about how easy it was to transfer data from their watch to the site i was (ednomodo). This is the response, My garmin, it all happens automaticaly.

    Dear Ross Cochrane,   Please accept our apologies for the late response as we strive to find the best solution to your concern.

    We have been in contact with our colleague from the higher level of support and we would like to inform you that it is possible to transfer your moves from Movescount to Endomondo and it involves 2 processes:

    1. From Movescount to Strava using Movescount’s own integration
    2. From Strava to Endomondo

    Another way to transfer the move is by manually exporting it  from Movescount and importing it to Endomondo. The FAQ for file import in Endomondo is provided below.

    Thank you and we hope that this information will help you.       Sincerely, Alessa Suunto Customer Support Team
  • HA77HA77 ✭✭✭

    I've got a Suunto Ambit 2 with which I'm very happy. Battery life seems to be holding up well after a year or so, although the longest I've used it for in one go is about 3 hours. Never had any problems with the link to Strava but it sounds like a real pain having to then transfer it again. 

  • Hi,

    Thanks for the reply.

    Yeah, I've used endomondo and garmin since I started running so I think I'm going to stuck with a similar setup.

    The suunto looked like a great watch though!
  • DazDaz ✭✭✭

    Always been a Garmin man - sitting on a 910xt at moment and happy.

    Endurance Coach @
    Elite Ironman, Ultra Trail Runner
  • Not sure if you can still get them on ebay but love my Garmin 310XT - battery life well over 12 hrs and fully waterproof.

    Heard a useful tip somewhere re portable USB charger in arm pouch - wired to wrist and recharging watch on go (when battery nearly flat) for the longer ultras. A lot of watches allow you to charge while still running, collecting data. Not tried it yet.


  • My thought process for my first Ultra has been: I'm going to want my phone with me anyway, so I can just use the Strava app on my phone and bring a small power bar too.

    Do you need it to be a watch?

  • Hi all,

    Well I decided to buy the garmin fenix 3 and it arrived today- so cant give any feedback on it yet.

    I did at 40 miler in Spain in July. My garmin 410 ran out abround 33 miles (from memorry) but the bleeping alerted me so i stopped and put on my tracker on my phone and then later combined the two. In total I did the run in 6 hours, 46 minutes and 7 seconds. However, I've had my 410 for 3 years now and noticed the battery life has been reeceding for a while. It can easily do a marathon, but I need to recharge it after every run to ensure I'm not caught out. I'm hoping to focus on increased distances, so not having to think about my watch shoud let my focus settle on other aspects more.


    Thanks for all the replies.


    Ewan- I never liked the feeling of the watch on my arm. I've got a pack now, but i find not accessing data- like miles, pace etc isn't to my personal liking. I prefer to be able to see how I'm performing during my runs, analyse areas in my training routes where i slow down and work on these. That's just my personal preference.

    Happy running image


  • Fair enough! I agree that carrying a phone on the arm can be a little uncomfortable, especially if the run is over a significant distance/time.

    I'm not particularly bothered about checking pace/distance/time with this event - a quick check at water/feed stops will suffice - so carrying my phone in my bag will be fine. It's always in one of the strap pouches on the front so is still pretty accessible on the run.

  • Yeah, I have my phone in my front pocket for listening to music, but I do like to keep an eye on my 'instant' pace when I hit an incline so I can push hard (depending on legs/mileage) etc.

    The longest I've ran is 40 miles. Maybe when I build upwards, this info will become less important, but I'm hoping to go 50, 60, 70 etc so that I can still stay within a pace that I'm happish with. I managed an average of 10:05 miles over 40 miles in 36??C heat in Spain, so was quite happy with that. Although next year I'm hoping to do the 50 mile glasgow to Edinburgh and aiming to get under 10 minute mile average pace. We'll see though image
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