Running watch recommendations, 2023

Hello everyone

I’m starting to get into running into thinking about buying a watch. There are millions of different choices and I am developing a case of analysis paralysis.

I’m wondering if the TrainerRoad community has any recommendations.

Coming from cycling I’m obviously interested in power. It would be great to have something that can facilitate interval, type workouts as intuitively as possible. I would also prioritize ease-of-use over a bunch of fancy features.

Are you already in the Garmin Connect ecosystem with a bike computer?

I’m a former runner with a forerunner 245 but that doesn’t support running power or a power meter for that matter but I have an edge 530 and they seem to work fine together with physio true up (it’s in garmin connect). In general the entire Forerunner ecosystem are great running watches and the Fenix series is a higher end device that is focused on multisport but would obviously be a great choice as well.

Here is a list of Garmin devices that support power:

If you aren’t in the Garmin ecosystem then there are some other options, I think the Coros Pace 2 was a great value for the included features.


Check out reviews by @dcrainmaker and DesFit.


I’d caveat that running power metrics aren’t really the same thing as in cycling (and I don’t think anywhere as where as widely used) so I wouldn’t expect an even transfer in that regard.

With that said, if you’re interested in training with power most middle-of-the-range watches from reputable brands will have that capacity nowadays, though many will require adding on an external sensor (stride, gamin’s ‘running dynamics’ pod etc.) which might be worth looking at ahead of time if you’ve got a strict budget.

I’m personally a big fan of the forerunner series because I’ve found them to be pretty robust, user-friendly, and focused on doing the basics really well. The all-day tracking (sleep etc) is also pretty decent in my experience.

If you’ve got the time/inclination to sift through a bunch of posts, the running threads also have a fair bit of discussion on watches IIRC :slight_smile:

Can’t go wrong with a Forerunner 2x5 or a Forerunner 9x5. Fenix series 5/6 can be found at a decent discount.

I like my 955 for mountain biking since I don’t really look at the computer as much.

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Good advice. Thank you everybody. It’s true that running power may not be anywhere near as useful as it is in Cycling. It seems like most devices do that now anyways so it’s not a big differentiator.

Most newer Garmin watches will come with native power, but pace is still the choice for training so far.

You can do ‘interval type workouts’ with pace. It’s the number one structured workout unit of measure. Power is nice though.

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Do all my ‘pacing’ with the Stryd power pod. Just confirms my RPE, especially on the trails. hills, muddy fields and into wind. Pace min/kms for me is useless in my environment.

Find it just as reliable and believable as my cycling power readings, though running side doesn’t use strain gauges and there isn’t a ‘standard’ on how to measure power. Upside is the power figures the Stryd gives me is very usable and consistent.

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Garmin Forerunner 9x5 plus Stryd for power. Stryd is consistently usable with a great app and data field for the watch plus the website is great for analysis and a backend ecosystem.