**This post is in collaboration with Magellan and the new Magellan Echo. I received the product as a way to get the word out about the Echo, but was not compensated in any other way and did not have to write a review. However, I loved the product enough to give it the recognition it deserves. All opinions are my own.**
Confession: I am runner and I DO NOT own a Garmin or other GPS watch.
*gasps from the crowd*
I know, right?! How do I even run without something like that?! Well, I should say that I do have (well, it’s Matt’s) a Garmin, but it is the oldest model there is and it’s just not very reliable and doesn’t keep a very good charge. Plus, it’s ginormous and weighs just about as much as the jogging stroller. OK, slight exaggeration, but you understand where I’m coming from.
Since I’ve had my iPhone, though, I’ve been using RunKeeper as my GPS watch. Is it convenient to run with my phone? Not really, but I feel much safer should something happen to me on a run, so I always, ALWAYS carry it with me.
The only problem? It’s really hard to unlock my phone while I’m running in order to look at my time or distance on my run. It’s just a pain in the butt, especially if I am doing a 5 miler I’m not familiar with and need to know where my turn around point is. It’s just make it much more difficult than running ever should be. And quite honestly, I’m sure I look super duper cool and coordinated when I’m trying to look at my phone when I run. *shakes head*
However, the awesome people at Magellan came up with a solution for people in my predicament. They developed the Magellan Echo that works with your favorite running apps so you no longer have the hassle of having to stop, unlock your phone, and make sure you’re not going to trip over a curb at the same time.
The Echo is NOT a GPS watch. Instead, it syncs via Bluetooth technology to your smart phone to transfer the data from your app to the watch conveniently placed on your wrist. It not only allows you to control your app from the watch but your music as well.
I’ve been using the Echo for about 6 weeks now and I absolutely LOVE it. The only downfall for me is that it doesn’t work with RunKeeper, which has nothing to do with Magellan. It’s just that RunKeeper hasn’t added the platform to the app. Hopefully, (if I complain enough) they will add the Echo in the near future and then you will see one very happy, pregnant runner. It does work with Strava and MapMyRun – I have used both, prefer MapMyRun over Strava because of what it displays on the Echo, but would still rather have RunKeeper get on the bandwagon.
Do I still have to run with my phone? Yup, but like I said, I would anyway because I feel much safer with it. But, the Echo allows me to actually wear my phone on my arm since I can control the app from the watch. It’s a pretty cool thing. And, compared to the Garmin, it has a really long battery life (like 10 months) so I don’t have to worry about charging it… EVER. No more having to worry about your watch dying on you, amiright?!
The other bonuses: mine came with a heart rate monitor (that I actually really haven’t used because I know I will obsess over my heart rate being above 140) and it doubles as a regular watch, which is great since I absolutely have to have a watch for teaching and coaching.
Seriously. I am in love with this product. Can you tell? If you don’t want to spend your life savings on a GPS watch that will be outdated in a year and are willing to run with your phone (aka music), than I highly suggest you give the Echo a try!