It is currently Sat Apr 29, 2017 6:38 pm
I've got an old (about 7 or 8 years) Polar heart rate monitor, but it has a strap. Is it accurate? I believe it used to be, but recently I went running with it and it told me my heart rate was just under 200 I didn't keel over and die, it was back down to about 88bpm about 10 seconds later... so methinks it's time for a new one. When I bought it, it was about $200 at the time. I reckon you'd be able to get a basic Polar HRM with a stopwatch for under $100 these days.
I will get a Garmin Forerunner 305 in the near future - it's got gps so you can accurately measure the distance you run/walk as well as km splits etc and it's a heart rate monitor (strapless, I believe). You can download all the info into a program on your computer and analyse your progress (or lack of!) The trouble is, they're about $350 But it will be good to have the gps in case I ever get los (again!) out bush
However, there are other, cheaper products by Garmin or Polar that are also recommended. The important thing to consider is getting a warranty for it in case something goes wrong with it.
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