The Timex Ironman Road Trainer heart rate monitor offers the complete package for improving your overall fitness level. In my review I talk about what features stand out.
I’ve always liked Timex watches. Ever since they decided to enter the sports watch and heart rate monitor category I’ve been keeping an eye out for what they can bring to the table. Well, from what I’ve seen so far the Timex quality and workmanship that they apply to their standard watches has carried over into the sports watch category as well. Timex has a wide variety of different models of sports watches on the market. Probably the one that offers the best-rounded features and can be used by a wide range of different athletes with different ability levels is the Timex Ironman Road Trainer. I took a look at this monitor and here’s what I found out.
Not all cardiovascular exercises are created equal, and neither is all sports equipment. Some tools can help you reach your fitness goals and add benefits to your workout better than others. When determining the efficiency of your exercise, you need to be able to calculate, with the greatest specificity possible, your heart rate while you are training at different intensity levels. Your heart rate determines how many calories you are burning off as you exercise, making it integral to how much you need to push yourself and how intense your exercise needs to be. If you are interested in measuring your heart rate during a workout, Timex has created a product right up your alley – the Timex Ironman Road Trainer heart rate monitor watch.
Go Hard or Go Home
The handy rule of thumb for heart rate is that any person’s maximum heart rate is approximately 220 minus their age. As such, an intense training session could result in a heart rate that is two or even three times as strong as your resting heart rate. But this maximum figure is not easy to attain, and the Timex Ironman helps you get up to the desired number by using a number of critical zone charting mechanics. These critical zones emphasize how long you have spent with your heart rate in the moderate to very high ranges. Whether you want to know how much of your run was spent in peak efficiency or you are looking to chart the duration of your maximum heart rate while you biked up a steep hill, the Timex Ironman Road Trainer Heart Rate Monitor Watch critical zones offer great information on your workout.
There are six target training zones based on your maximum heart rate. Five of these are set automatically by the Timex Ironman, the other can be manually programmed by you. These zones are the basis of your training. More intense workouts will be in a higher zone whereas lighter recovery workouts will be in a lower zone. If your heart rate strays above or below the training zone, the watch will beep and let you know. You can then adjust your workout intensity level up or down to get back in the zone.
Rest and Recover and Get Back Out There
How quickly you get to the top is important, but how quickly you come down is just as important. If you have ever watched a pro basketball, football, or ice hockey game, you know that a timeout lasts only thirty or sixty seconds. That is because professional athletes have the cardiovascular endurance needed to get their heart rate down to resting speed in under a minute. While you probably are not ready to compare yourself to pro athletes, you can nevertheless monitor how fast your heartbeat returns to a normal resting level. This allows you to reduce the time you spend resting during your exercise and spend more time training. Chart your average rise and fall and watch the overall figure drop during the course of a few weeks.
Heart rate recovery tracking is a feature that is not found on many heart rate monitors and I consider it very important. Knowing how quickly your heart rate returns to a normal level after intense exercise is an excellent measure of your overall fitness level. Plus if you participate in any sport that requires a relatively short burst of energy followed by a short rest, having a strong heart rate recovery ability is essential.
The Timex Ironman Road Trainer Remembers So You Do Not Have To
There are few things more difficult than keeping track of how many laps you are on or how long you have spent on a workout. That is why your gym likely has clocks on every wall, to let everyone know how long they’ve been working out. The Timex Ironman Road Trainer Heart Rate Monitor Watch has an excellent memory system that can track either the time you spend exercising or the number of laps you take on the track. This allows you to not only measure the performance of your heart rate over time, but monitor the workout itself. The Ironman will calculate and record your performance over fifty laps or intervals and how you have performed cumulatively for one hundred hours. However you want to chart your workout, the Ironman has a system that can help you out.
With the Timex Ironman you also have the option to purchase a Data Recorder which lets you upload your data to your computer, graph it, and analyze it further using the Timex Trainer software that comes with the Ironman monitor. The Data Recorder basically serves as an additional external memory as well by recording heart rate, speed, and distance for multiple workouts. To use it while you workout just slip it in your pocket or clip it on your waist.
This video provides a good overview of all of the features of Ironman.
Everything Else To Give You A Boost
The Timex Ironman Road Trainer Heart Rate Monitor Watch also features an alarm setting, night-light functions, a three year battery that you can change yourself, a signature transmission so that it does not cross wires with other heart monitors, and water resistance up to one hundred meters.
- Nice looking watch – You can wear the Ironman as a fashion accessory in addition to using it as a training watch.
- IndiGlo – This is a great backlight that is good for training at night. You can even set it up so that when you push any button the light will come on.
- Comfortable chest strap – The strap stays in place and is adjustable for all body types.
- Easy to scroll through different data screens – It’s very easy to show the data that you want to see on the screen.
- Priced low – At under $70 the Timex Ironman Road Trainer is a great buy.
- No interactive website available – All of the other manufacturers like Polar and Garmin have their own websites where you can upload your data and interact with other members. I’m not sure why Timex hasn’t done the same yet.
- No GPS – With GPS the cost of this watch would go up significantly, but it would still be nice to have this option. However many people don’t feel like they need GPS and advanced mapping features.
What Comes In The Box?
- Chest strap
- Timex Road Trainer Wrist Watch
- Two manuals – Timex Ironman Road Trainer Owner’s manual and a booklet on heart rate training
If you’d like to read more about Timex watches head on over to their website at Timex.com.
What Are Others Saying?
Overall, customers who have bought the Timex Ironman claim to be quite satisfied with their purchase. Half the reviewers on major outlet sites give it a perfect rating, while only ten percent rank it as a poor product. On Amazon.com over 115 owners rate the Ironman on average 4 out of 5 stars, which is excellent. Amateur athletes who compete in high-intensity cardiovascular activities such as mini-marathons or Iron Man competitions report that it offers an excellent analysis of their performance over time.
Owners talk about how the numbers are large enough that they can be easily seen while exercising, even through swimming goggles or sunglasses, making it excellent for those who want to get out and do more than take laps around a track. They also say how easy the screens are to scroll though and how easy the watch is to setup and program.
There were a few negative comments about the Road Trainer. Some customers report that the battery life has been erratic and consistently needs to be charged or even changed out. However, one customer suggests that those who report the battery running down quickly make the mistake of storing it within six feet of the chest strap (which records the physical heart rate) while leaving both devices on, so that wrist unit automatically takes recordings and wears down the battery.
Others claim that the heart monitor can fluctuate and cause imprecise readings. It may be in these cases that the chest strap is not securely against their skin as they train. Many others claim to have no problem with their heart rates being accurately recorded.
Another slight negative is that the Ironman cannot be directly connected to a home computer to download or upload data without purchasing the optional Data Recorder. Other manufacturers including Polar often have optional data links as well. I personally prefer to have the option. If you don’t want to load your training data to your computer to really analyze it and see it on a nice chart, then you shouldn’t have to pay for that feature. If you do want that level of analysis then you can buy the extra upgrade that Timex provides.
If you’d like to read even more Timex Ironman Road Trainer Heart Rate Monitor Reviews, then simply click the link.
Best Place to Buy
There are several models of the Road Trainer being offered by Timex. There are two full size models, the T5K212F5 which has an orange circle around the face (this is shown in the picture at the start of this article), and model T5K211 which has a red circle. Then there are two mid-sized models, the T5K213 which as a silver line around the face, and T5K214 which has a blue line. All of the models have the same features and a black wrist band.
After a thorough search I found the best price for the Road Trainer on Amazon.com. When I checked it was being offered for a 41% discount which is excellent. Combine that with Amazon’s free shipping and you’ve got a real bargain there. Click here to find out the latest price for the Timex Ironman Road Trainer Heart Rate Monitor Watch.