6 Fitness Watches to Enhance Your Workout

Vantage V2 smartwatch fitness watch
courtesy Vantage

It’s not easy to stay motivated when training alone. But apathy is where the right watch can help keep you on track. Where old-school watches simply told the time and occasionally offered a stopwatch feature, today’s fitness watches can track your pace, heart rate, and blood oxygen levels, as well as monitor your sleep, play music, and surprisingly, much more. With so many options, it can be difficult to zero in on the watch that’s right for you. Here’s six of the latest worthy fitness watches on the market.

RipCurl watchRip Curl Search GPS 2
Best for Surfers
Rip Curl has pioneered surf watches and the Search GPS2 is its most advanced watch yet. Featuring 1,400 preprogrammed tide locations, the watch tracks tide, wind, and swell, as well as your individual session. In addition to all the usual features you’d expect in a watch, the Search GPS 2 allows you to view your top speed, distance paddled, wave count, and session time, directly from the watch or through the Search App. Additionally, Rip Curl has partnered with Surfline Sessions, so you can easily relive each of your waves through your phone. The Search GPS 2 may seem like an extravagance, but once you strap it on your wrist, you’ll be hooked. [$299; ripcurl.com]

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The Apple Watch Series 6 with SIM will retail for $399.
The Apple Watch Series 6 with SIM will retail for $399. Courtesy of Apple

Apple Series 6
Best for Everyday Use
Coupling fitness innovations and stay-connected technology, the Apple Series 6 helps prove once again while the brand consistently leads so many sectors: It allows you to track every detail of your workout while still being able to talk and text on the go. Standout features include health trackers that measure your blood oxygen or take an ECG on the go, fitness trackers that monitor your daily activity and workouts, emergency SOS and fall detection technology, and an always-on Retina display that ensures you can stay connected, even without your phone. In comparison to the Series 5, Apple’s newest model features a blood oxygen sensor, an altimeter, a compass, ability to measures both low VO2 and VO2 max, a screen that is 2.5 times brighter and a speaker that is 50 percent louder—all charging 20 percent faster. [$399; apple.com]

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Suunto 7 watchSuunto 7
Best for Multi-sport
Coupling fashion with functionality, Sunnto’s latest multi-sport watch combines Sunnto’s versatile sports expertise with Wear OS by Google, a wearable operating system that brings the best of Google to smartwatches. The one-size-fits-all watch offers over 70 sport modes, free offline outdoor maps, wrist-based heart rate measurements, tracking and navigation, barometric altimeter for elevation readings, and sleep/recovery insights. In an effort to keep up on longer adventures, the water-resistant watch features a low power, always on sports display, plus a battery-saving GPS mode. [$499; suunto.com]

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Polar Vantage V2 watchPolar Vantage V2
Best for Recovery
Polar’s newest and most advanced multi-sport watch, the Vantage V2 is a sleek, waterproof watch that features performance tests, route planning, recovery tracking, and a smart fueling assistant. In addition to traditional smartwatch features, the Vantage V2 offers a running performance test, cycling performance test, leg recovery test, a training load pro, recovery pro, and nightly recharge (pictured). The recovery pro feature provides recovery feedback while the nightly recharge shows how well you’ve recovered from the previous day’s workout, allowing you to fully get in tune with your body and optimize your training. [$499; polar.com]

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Fitbit SenseFitbit Sense
Best for Health Nuts
Featuring innovative sensor and software technology, the Fitbit Sense is the company’s most advance health smartwatch to date. Like all of Fitbit’s watches, the Sense tracks daily steps and calories burned, but also includes the world’s first electrodermal activity (EDA) sensor to help manage stress, as well as advanced heart rate-tracking technology, a new ECG app, an on-wrist temperature sensor, and six-plus days of battery life. Other thoughtful features include a built-in GPS, on-screen navigation, a sleep tracker, interchangeable bands, and an entire mindfulness section available through the app. Included with all purchases is a six-month premium trial, which provides access to more advance sleep analytics, a 30-day wellness report, fun challenges, and hundreds of workout videos, mindfulness sessions, and guided programs. [$329; fitbit.com]

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Garmin fenix6 Pro Solar fitness watchGarmin Fenix 6 Pro Solar Edition
Best for Endurance Endeavors
Garmin knows GPS. And featuring a Power Glass solar-charging lens and customizable power manager modes, the Fenix 6 can get up to 14 days of battery life while indoors or up to 16 days when solar charging in smartwatch mode. Compatible with almost any sport, the solar watch includes animated workouts, wrist-based heart rate, advanced sleep monitoring, pace-pro technology, acclimation, respiration tracking, topographical maps, turn-by-turn navigation, and so much more. For long-haul adventures, the watch even offers an “Expedition Mode,” which is an ultra low-powered GPS reference that lasts for weeks, allowing you to keep track of your trip from start to finish. [$849; garmin.com]

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