Best Triathlon Watch in 2018

Garmin Forerunner 935

The triathlon watch is the staple training accessory of any triathlete. But you already know that.

You came here to find out which triathlon watch is the best right?

Although I think these “best” articles are a little subjective I do still write them since you are looking for answers.

So here is my pick for the best triathlon watch in 2018.

Garmin Forerunner 935

The Garmin Forerunner 935 is my pick for the best triathlon watch in 2018. Does that mean you should buy it right now? No.

The Garmin Forerunner 935 is the relatively newer release from the GPS watch powerhouse. They took everything that you liked about your beloved 920XT and made it 100 times better.

The Garmin Forerunner 935:

  • Offers advanced running and multisport features in a comfortable watch you can wear all day, and it only weighs 49 grams
  • Provides elevation changes with a built-in barometer; altimeter and electronic compass help you keep your bearings
  • Evaluates your training status to indicate if you’re undertraining or overdoing it and offers additional performance monitoring features
  • Provides advanced dynamics for running, cycling and swimming, including ground contact time balance, stride length and more
  • Battery life: up to 2 weeks in watch mode, up to 24 hours in GPS mode or up to 50 hours in UltraTrac mode

Like I said, this watch is just a modern upgrade of your 920XT with a few new features added in. I like to think of it as a getting the new iPhone when your current one is 2 years old.

Is it going to make you better? Probably not. That’s up to you. But it will give you happy feelings every time you get to play with it.

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Best Feature of the 935 – Training Status

This is easily the feature that I love the most trainingstatuson the Garmin Forerunner 935. Similarly to how the 920XT has the recovery adviser feature this watch takes it a lot further.

I won’t bore you with the geeky details but this watch does a much better job than any other at actually telling me when I need to rest a little bit more or when I should push harder.

Unlike the 920XT that only used your “Aerobic training effect” to advise you on recovery, the 935 measures aerobic, anaerobic, and others.


The Battery Life

The battery life on this watch is outrageous for a GPS watch this light. Its only 49 grams and I’m pretty sure I go 2 weeks without charging it.

That is a huge upgrade in my opinion. Most GPS watches would run out very quickly and even quicker in bluetooth mode. But the Garmin Forerunner 935 seems to hold a charge for a while.

Wrist Based Heart Rate Monitor

Those of you triathletes that religiously wore the 920XT will know all about the hardships of HR Straps. So upon first impressions I was very excited to have a watch with a wrist based heart rate monitor.

That was until I started using it. Now let me preface this by saying it is still better at wrist based hear rate detection that every other Garmin Forerunner. However, it still falls short of the straps.

I found that my readings were off while I rode (sometimes) and especially when transitioning from the swim to the bike. I’m not talking about being off for 30 minutes but more like a minute or two.

This isn’t really that big of a deal for most but when you get out of the water and out of transition and look down at your heart rate and think that you can push it harder – it isn’t great.

A couple of times I learned that if it feels like you are in zone 4 then you probably are.


This feature comes standard with a fair number of Garmin devices but I still think it is worth mentioning.

Not all GPS watch makers have this feature and I think it’s great – especially for those who train mostly outside.

LiveTrack is a feature that lets your friends and family see where you are at all times of a training ride or race.

With the older watches you had to start it on your phone but this watch has an auto-start feature that picks up when you start riding.

The Worst Feature of the Garmin Forerunner 935 – Connect IQ

ConnectIQOkay okay. This is more of a “worst feature of garmin gps watches” but still. I simply don’t understand why anyone needs this. If you want a smartwatch that looks great and does a lot you shouldn’t be buying this. Get an Apple Watch or something.

Garmin Forerunner watches aren’t meant to be something you can wear with nice clothes. They are meant to get sweaty. Get dirty. Get wet.

I digress. You can’t get a Forerunner watch nowadays without the ConnectIQ options so this really isn’t a deal breaker. I just wanted to rant about this for a bit.


Like I stated before I don’t think you absolutely need this watch. Is the Garmin Forerunner 935 the best triathlon watch in 2018? I think so.

But it won’t make you faster. Watches don’t do that. Your training does.

Smarter? Possibly if you have a really old watch or no watch at all.

If your watch is broken, you have an old watch or no watch at all then I think the Garmin Forerunner 935 is the perfect option.

But then again this is just my opinion so do whatever you want.

PRICE: $439.99

Get the Garmin Forerunner 935 Here

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