Everyone can run. But not everyone can be a runner. It takes a lot to be a runner.

You have to be built for it. You also need some handful of time with you because you’ll be running long distances and will be far away from your home. 

People who constantly run need something that will accompany them in their journey. A running watch is a good way to start it.

GPS watches were the first tried and tested running watches and are still loved by many. Today, there are other types of running watches to choose from.

Running watches are generally classified into 3: GPS running watch, fitness tracking watch, and smartwatch. All of which are capable of tracking distance, fitness, and have notifications.

There are also running watches that combine all these three. Others don’t tell any of these things, and instead only tell the elevation, pressure, weather, and direction (compass).

With all these many choices, we’ve gathered some of the best running watches for men that might just put an end to your search. Here they are:

Polar M430 GPS Running Watch

I would say this is more of a fitness tracker than a GPS running watch. But that doesn’t make it any less.

With its 24/7 tracking capabilities, it can track all of your activities from start, up until you sleep. It’s that dedicated. It also continuously monitors your heart rate through the 6 LED optical sensors.

This Polar running watch is a fitness junky that tests your aerobic fitness level, running performance, load, and recovery status.

It’s also integrated with GPS to track your distance, speed, route, and altitude.

Pros
  • Optical heart rate monitoring
  • Optimized fitness tracking
  • Integrated GPS
  • Built-in accelerometer
  • Easy sync to mobile or computer
  • Customized running plan
Cons
  • Not the best GPS tracker

Garmin Instinct Watch

A military-grade running watch serious in global navigation and distance tracking.

This guy is built for the outdoors. Other than GPS, it also has GLONASS and Galileo navigation system to track tricky routes. Yes, it gives more importance to distance tracking.

In addition to this, it can also monitor your heart rate, activity, and stress. Moreover, it sends you notifications and can even upload data (any type) automatically. Its TracBack feature lets you go back to your starting point.

The best part? You can change the battery settings: 14 days in smartwatch mode, up to 16 hours in GPS mode, and up to 40 hours in UltraTrac battery saver mode.

Pros
  • GPS, GLONASS and Galileo navigation
  • Military-grade outdoor design
  • 3-axis compass and barometric altimeter
  • Fitness tracking
  • Smart notifications
Cons
  • Didn’t find any

SUUNTO Core Military Men’s Outdoor Sports Watch

Okay so remember the part I said where there are runners who don’t need their watches to have GPS, fitness tracker and alert notifications? This is that watch.

It’s also an outdoor watch but it can only tell the following: weather, sunrise, sunset, and elevation. This is perfect for you if you only need to know these things while running outside.

Pros
  • Simple and has all the basics covered
  • Altimeter
  • Barometer
  • Compass
  • Weather indicator
Cons
  • Not for you if you need GPS tracking, fitness monitoring, or smart notifications

Letsfit Smart Watch

This is best for runners who want to wear their phone instead of a watch.

The Letsfit smartwatch connects to your smartphone so you can receive calls, messages, emails, and social notifications through its 1. 3″ colored touch screen. It helps you check fitness data and reports easily. It only takes 2-3 hours for it to operate for up to 10 days.

This smartwatch gives you: heart and fitness monitoring, female health tracking, breathing guide, alarm clock, stopwatch, and choices on how to respond to the notifications.

Pros
  • Great battery life
  • Multi-purpose
  • Breathing guide
  • Female health tracking
Cons
  • Won’t properly touch with sweaty hands

Letsfit Fitness Tracker

Yes, another one from Letsfit because they make good-quality outdoor running watches.

This watch is also an all-in-one kind with a focus on fitness. It monitors heart rate, sleep quality, tracks your everyday activities (24-hr), including sports like basketball, treadmill, yoga, and 11 other sports.

A 24-hr GPS tracking is also integrated as well for distance tracking. It also features vibration notification so you don’t miss any call, text, calendar, and social notifications.

Pros
  • 24H GPS and activity tracking
  • 14 sports tracker
  • Notification vibration
  • Long battery life
Cons
  • Not the most accurate GPS data

Types of Running or Fitness Watch

They can all track distance, track fitness, and tell you notifications. But not all of them do these in the best way. Each of them only masters one task. And that’s we’re here to find out.

GPS Running Watch

A GPS watch will tell you the most precise distance you’re covering and have covered.

There’s no need to bring your phone. In fact, GPS has a far better tracker than your latest smartphone. It connects to the satellites safely and more efficiently.

Fitness Tracker

A fitness tracker covers more fitness tracking like walking, jogging, running, swimming, yoga, and other activities.

The goal really is to record your fitness journey even when you’re sleeping so there are no deficiencies in the documentation. These watches are generally made to push people to be more fit.

Smartwatch

They’re meant to notify you more than anything. They’re more interactive than the previous two in the sense that you can respond or act upon these notifications unlike the GPS watch and fitness tracker. You can also choose what notifications you’d like to receive.

Conclusion

Running watches have come a long way.

First off, I’d like to note that they are all waterproof, if not water-resistant. But no running watch is great at everything. Before getting yourself a running watch, know first what you need it for.

I do like all of them. But they all have their weaknesses too. But, you can overlook them if you are only after a certain feature.

GPS watches can be bulky, fitness trackers small, and smartwatches annoying and its touch screen helpless against sweat or water.

Running with notifications is fine. But running with a lot of them is not, at least for me.

Some watch companies today, especially smartwatch companies, are trying to incorporate all three major watches.

For me it’s great! But some functions will be compromised. The GPS tracker, for example, will be smaller to accommodate other features.

What I can recommend is to pick a concentration and stay with it. This way, you’ll know what you need most so you can pick the ideal running watch for you.