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10 Best Heart Rate Monitors for Running

by Jessica Hegg August 24, 2018 0 Comments

Runner Looking At Her Mobile And Smart Watch Heart Rate Monitor

Running is fantastic exercise for your cardiovascular health, weight loss and mental wellbeing. The best heart rate monitor for running will guide you on when to work harder in a run and when your body needs a rest, meaning you can push yourself safely to achieve your fitness goals. Heart rate monitors come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can be worn as a watch or around the chest. This list will help you find which is the best heart rate monitor for you.

Top 10 Heart Rate Monitors for Running

Model Brand Lowest Price
1. FT4 Heart Rate Monitor Polar
BEST PRICE »
2.Heart Rate Sensor and Fitness Tracker Polar
BEST PRICE »
3. FT7 Heart Rate Monitor Polar
BEST PRICE »
4. Fitness Tracker LETSCOM
BEST PRICE »
5. Fitness Tracker Lintelek
BEST PRICE »
6. GPS Sports Watch Polar
BEST PRICE »
7. Heart Rate Monitor Garmin
BEST PRICE »
8. Runsense Watch Epson
BEST PRICE »
9. Fitness Tracker CAMTOA
BEST PRICE »
10. Activity Tracker HealthTree
BEST PRICE »

1. FT4 Heart Rate Monitor by Polar FT4 Heart Rate Monitor by Polar


This is our top pick for the best heart rate monitor for exercise due to its simplicity and accuracy. Instead of bombarding you with stats, this monitor focuses on delivering a continuous heart rate while you train, so you can tell at a glance whether you’re working at maximum capacity, or can afford to push harder. A soft fabric chest strap provides a highly accurate reading, and the watch will use your personal stats and heart rate to provide calorie consumption as well. Train smarter, not harder, with all the information you need on your wrist.

Pros:
  • Clear information for during a workout
  • Delivers a continuous, accurate reading
  • Water resistant
Cons:
  • Does not track steps

2. Heart Rate Sensor and Fitness Tracker by Polar Heart Rate Sensor and Fitness Tracker by Polar


For live heart rate readings sent straight to your IPhone, IPad, or Android devices, this bluetooth sensor is a great choice. It’s possibly the best heart rate monitor for cycling, as it uses heart rate rather than just speed traveled, to measure calories burned. This tracker provides everything you need to know to monitor your exercise, without overwhelming you with additional information.

Pros:
  • Helps you workout at the right intensity
  • Waterproof
  • Provides a highly accurate reading
Cons:
  • Does not track other performance indicators

3. FT7 Heart Rate Monitor by Polar FT7 Heart Rate Monitor by Polar


If you’re serious about progressing your fitness, the FT7 Heart Rate Monitor is the perfect tool to do it. It tracks and remembers up to 99 workouts to allow you to monitor your progress over time, comparing heart rate and calories burned. Featuring a comfortable chest strap for an accurate heart rate reading, this provides continuous feedback on your workout intensity as you train.

Pros:
  • Tracks heart rate live
  • Connects with compatible gym equipment
  • Water resistant
Cons:
  • Band may be irritating for sensitive skin

4. Fitness Tracker by LETSCOM Fitness Tracker by LETSCOM


This fitness tracker is the perfect choice for anyone looking to gain a broader understanding of their fitness alongside their heart rate. The device tracks real-time heart rate alongside step count, distance traveled, sleep duration, and lots more, providing you with an overall view of your health. Connect to your cell phone to track your activity data during and after your workout.

Pros:
  • GPS records a map of your route
  • Charges easily through a USB port
  • See calls and messages on your wrist
Cons:
  • Phone app may drain battery life

5. Fitness Tracker by Lintelek Fitness Tracker by Lintelek


Featuring fourteen built in fitness modes, this heart rate monitor and fitness tracker can tell you what your heart rate means based on the activity you’re doing, while also recording steps and the distance covered. Use this tracker to monitor whether you are getting enough sleep, and it can even be set to vibrate as a gentle silent alarm to help you get up in time for your workout. With a larger touch screen face, this is a user-friendly fitness tracker that still looks sleek and discreet.

Pros:
  • GPS records real time walking or running stats
  • Compatible with most cell phones
  • Features customizable clock and stopwatch
Cons:
  • Some users find the step count feature inaccurate

6. GPS Sports Watch by Polar GPS Sports Watch by Polar


If you’re a serious athlete on the hunt for the best heart rate monitor to up your running or cycling game, this could be the investment for you. Although more expensive than other monitors, this device delivers on quality. With the freedom to create and customize profiles for different sports, this tracker allows you to tailor the readings to your training regimen, and will track running or cycling routes with built in GPS. With Polar’s H7 heart sensor included, you can be sure to get the most accurate reading for your workout.

Pros:
  • Can measure your heart rate while swimming
  • Receive feedback straight after a workout
  • Tracks steps, distance and calories
Cons:
  • More costly than other heart rate monitors

7. Heart Rate Monitor by Garmin Heart Rate Monitor by Garmin


This chest strap by Garmin is designed with runners in mind, and is a great choice for those looking to improve their running performance. The soft, adjustable strap sits comfortably around the chest to provide an up to date heart rate reading throughout your workout. This device focuses not only on effort but form—tracking cadence, vertical oscillation, ground contact time balance, stride length and vertical ratio. It’s the perfect tool to help you run smarter as well as faster.

Pros:
  • Provides detailed information on your running form
  • Accurate heart rate reading
  • Well made product from a trusted brand
Cons:
  • Battery may need regular replacing

8. Runsense Watch by Epson Runsense Watch by Epson


This GPS enabled watch is perfect for those who love to run or cycle in the great outdoors, measuring heart rate, distance covered and stride length to inform your training. Compatible with most running apps, this watch provides an accurate picture of heart rate, and can provide alerts and vibrations on the move linked to target pace, distance, or heart rate. This watch has a long lasting battery life, so it will always be there to perform when you need it.

Pros:
  • No chest strap required for an accurate reading
  • Helps guide running form
  • Lightweight and water resistant
Cons:
  • Built in app clunky to use

9. Fitness Tracker by CAMTOA Fitness Tracker by CAMTOA


This multi-purpose fitness tracker is a great all rounder to support you in leading a healthier, more active lifestyle. Alongside heart rate, track calories burned, steps, and distance covered to gain an overall picture of your daily progress. With a large screen and adjustable brightness for outdoor use, this fitness tracker is easier to use than ever before.

Pros:
  • Receive message and call notifications to your wrist
  • Sedentary reminder feature
  • Monitors sleep quality and time
Cons:
  • Less accurate as a heart rate monitor than those with a chest strap

10. Activity Tracker by HealthTree Activity Tracker by HealthTree


This great value activity tracker is ideal for those who want to take control of their health on a budget. For the little price tag, you can track a surprising amount of performance markers, including heart rate, blood pressure, step count, calories burned, and quality of sleep. This tracker is also waterproof, so perfect for triathlon training.

Pros:
  • Receive phone notifications straight to your tracker
  • Alarm clock feature
  • Comfortable to wear all day
Cons:
  • Blood pressure measure may be slightly inaccurate

 

Maximize the Benefits of a Heart Rate Monitor for Running

When used effectively, heart rate monitors will help you ramp up your training and fitness to the next level. Here are our tips to ensure your heart rate monitor helps improve your performance with every workout.

  • Understand Your Heart Rate

In order to be able to use your heart rate to improve performance, you need to know what you’re looking for. Getting to know the difference between your resting heart rate, max heart rate, and training heart rate will help you unlock your potential.

Tip:
Alongside a heart rate monitor, a pulse oximeter is a great tool for understanding your heart health. Our buying guide will help you decide if a pulse oximeter is right for you.

  • Train Smarter, Not Harder

Getting the most out of your workout does not mean training at maximum effort constantly. In fact, this could cause you serious damage. Instead, aim to spend the majority of your workout within your training heart rate zone. Use your heart rate monitor as you run to tell you whether you can afford to push a little harder for maximum impact, or whether it’s time to ease off.

  • Monitor your Progress

Whether your goal of using a heart rate monitor is weight loss, endurance or lower blood pressure, it’s important to track your progress in order to tweak your exercise program to meet your needs. If heart health is important to you, you can find the best blood pressure monitor with our buying guide.

Not sure where to begin? Check out our guide to medical monitoring to discover the five vital signs you should be tracking for your best health.

Other Tips to Improve Heart Health and Fitness

It takes consistent effort to improve your heart health, but the good news is that there are many simple tweaks you can make to help you along your way. Here’s how to boost your heart health in three easy steps.

1. Exercise Regularly

Cardio activity and weight lifting are both an excellent way to support a healthy heart. Aim for 120 minutes of heart-pumping exercise a week. If you don’t fancy hitting the streets for a run every day, we’ve found the 10 Best Exercise Pedals for Elderly Adults that are perfect for use in the comfort of your own home.

Tip:
If you’ve improved your activity levels but aren’t noticing a difference in the number on the scales, consider using a body fat scale instead.


2. Eat Foods Your Heart Will Love

Heart health doesn’t just come from cutting out processed foods—it’s what goes into your diet as well that counts. Start the day with whole grains or oats, snack on walnuts, almonds, and peanuts and try swapping red meat for seafood in your evening meals. Your heart will thank you.

3. Monitor Stress Levels

High stress from work or a hectic family life can wreak havoc on our heart health. Help your body combat stress by taking some time for yourself each day. Whether that’s a few minutes meditation, or an hour long yoga class, relaxing the mind will have a positive long term impact on your physical health as well.

Find the Best Heart Rate Monitor for Running

Heart rate monitors are a great device for newbie athletes as well as seasoned runners, as they’re designed to help you understand your body and what it needs from a training program. There are heart rate monitors on this list to suit every taste and budget, so choose the one that appeals to you, and get running.

Sources

https://www.active.com/fitness/articles/how-to-use-a-heart-rate-monitor-to-improve-fitness?page=2

https://greatist.com/move/heart-rate-monitor-tips

https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/10-small-steps-for-better-heart-health

Jessica Hegg
Jessica Hegg

Jessica Hegg is the content manager and at ViveHealth.com. With vast product knowledge and understanding of individual needs, she aims to share valuable information on making smart buying choices, overcoming obstacles and overall improving the quality of life for others. Avid gym-rat and nutrition enthusiast, she’s interested in all things related to staying active and living healthy lifestyle.



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