Garmin Forerunner 35 GPS Running Watch

Last updated date: June 18, 2021

DWYM Score

8.0

Garmin Forerunner 35 GPS Running Watch

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We looked at the top Sport Watches and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Sport Watch you should buy.

Update as June 15, 2021:
Checkout The Best Sport Watch for a detailed review of all the top sport watches.

Overall Take

Optimize your running performance with this sport watch, which monitors heart rate and tracks running speed, distance, daily calories and intensity minutes. You can also access an online community and connect this watch to your phone to get notifications.


In our analysis of 37 expert reviews, the Garmin Forerunner 35 GPS Running Watch placed 4th when we looked at the top 8 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

From The Manufacturer

Easy-to use GPS running watch tracks how far, how fast and where you run. Estimates heart rate at the wrist, all day and night, using Garmin elevate wrist heart rate technology. Connected features: Smart notifications, automatic uploads to Garmin Connect, live tracking and music controls (when paired with a compatible smartphone). All-day activity tracking estimates steps, calories and intensity minutes and reminds you when to move. Automatically uploads your data to Garmin Connect, our free online fitness community where you can join challenges, receive insights and share your progress as you meet your goals.

Expert Reviews

Expert Summarized Score

7.5
6 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

9.2
11,672 user reviews

What experts liked

A smart watch that was made for people that prefer simple smart technology rather than overly feature-heavy products like the apple watch that often loses significant battery life over the multiple things it can do. This product is perfect for runners that would like to see their stats during their weekly jogs. All the stats that are recorded through the watch are stored in the Garmin connect app which helps put vital information in a well organized system. This garmin watch was made for consumers that enjoy smart products at a reasonable price.
- Gadget Review
Simplicity is what makes it such a great GPS watch. It is comfortable to wear and tracks your runs or bike rides while delivering some useful metrics and dynamics. And it has an optical heart rate monitor. But it does provide a thoughtful combination of needed features with a few nice to haves thrown in — all for a great price.
- Outdoor Gear Lab
The Forerunner 35 makes it very easy to track both everyday activity and sports, partly because it doesn’t go overboard on features. Runners are well catered for, with several different outdoor modes including customisable interval and run/walk workouts, and a virtual pacer.
- Coach
For the lazy types, the Forerunner 35 has a Move alert, which will buzz your wrist if you've been sitting too long. A Move bar at the bottom of the screen grows in length the longer you've been sitting, and only a good 5-minute walk will clear it.
- Tom's Guide
If you're looking for built-in GPS and heart rate monitoring, however, it's one of the best values you'll find. It allows you to track bike rides, walks, and runs, and view your resting and continuous heart rate, as well as your heart rate zones. It's all wrapped up in a waterproof design that has long battery life, push notifications, and the ability to control music playback on your phone.
- PC Magazine
It’s reminiscent of the Apple Watch. It’s also quite a bit smaller than the Forerunner 235 and 735XT, making it a more comfortable fit for people with thin wrists. The battery will last about 13 hours in GPS mode and 9 days in everyday use.
- The Wired Runner

What experts didn't like

Stale graphics.
- Gadget Review
There is no long list of features that come with this watch.
- Outdoor Gear Lab
You’re unlikely to want to wear it all the time thanks to its blocky design – it’s clearly a sports watch. It would take quite a while to lock on to GPS at the start of each run – probably 30-60 seconds longer than other trackers.
- Coach
The types of activities the Forerunner 35 can track are limited to Cardio: walk, run outdoor, run indoor and bike. That's not as comprehensive as the TomTom Spark 3 Cardio, which can also track swimming. The Forerunner 35's GPS took slightly longer than more expensive GPS watches to acquire a signal. I found the Forerunner 35's heart rate monitor a bit slow.
- Tom's Guide
You can swim with it, but it can't track sessions like the TomTom Spark 3 , the Garmin Forerunner 735XT ($299.99 at Amazon) , or some other waterproof fitness trackers.
- PC Magazine
It comes with a virtual pacer that will alert you when you’re going way faster or slower than a set pace. This might be ok if you live in a flat area. I’m surrounded by big hills where my pace fluctuates a lot, so I rarely use this feature.
- The Wired Runner

An Overview On Sport Watches

If you want to improve your fitness and optimize your performance, a sport watch is a useful gadget to have. The watch can help you measure important metrics and track your improvement over time, ensuring you achieve your goals and overcome physical challenges. With a sport watch, you can track how well you’re doing, where are you are in meeting your goals and what else you have to work on to get there.

There are many different sport watches available, and the type you need will depend on your physical fitness goals. Some sport watches act as a fitness tracker. These watches capture basic data you need to know about your fitness performance, such as steps taken, calories burned and distance walked. Some fitness tracker sport watches also monitor things like how much sleep you had or what your heart rate is. They are ideal for beginners who are just starting out using sport watches to monitor their performance.

GPS sport watches are another choice for those who want to record their routes and analyze them to optimize training. For example, they can help you see things like pace, elevation or cadence. GPS-equipped watches are perfect for long-distance runners or cyclists.

A next level of sport watch offers advanced heart-rate monitors through an external wrist monitor or chest strap. They can help you analyze your pulse during a workout to boost your fat burn, endurance, strength and speed. Many of these kinds of sport watches also enable you to see your maximum oxygen consumption and your recovery rate.

If you participate in different types of fitness activities, go with a multi-sport watch. It has many of the features of the other watches, but can actually be programmed for specific activities. For example, you can set it for running, cycling, hiking, skiing or snowboarding. If you have a waterproof watch, you can also wear it while swimming and paddleboarding.

The Sport Watch Buying Guide

  • The features you need on a sport watch depend on your fitness goals. For example, do you want to see how many calories you burn with each workout or do you want to know the optimal pace you should run to burn the most fat? Do you want to set routes for the best workout or do you just want to see how many steps you took in a day? Outlining your fitness goals will help you figure out the best kind of sport watch for you.
  • While you’re busy working out, you may not want to be constantly checking your sport watch. Opt for one that has audio or vibration prompts so you can set it to alert you at specific times or when you’re in a certain heart-rate zone.
  • Many sport watches are connected to apps or websites, where you can upload your personal data and analyze it. This is a great feature to have if you want more insight on your fitness performance.
  • If you train alone but like being competitive with others, check to see whether your sport watch’s manufacturer has built an online community. You may be able to compare your data with virtual fitness partners, join group challenges and get insight on your performance. Being competitive can motivate you to exceed your goals.
  • Some sport watches can help you create customized workouts or training circuits, which is a great way to optimize your fitness and improve your performance. It’s like having a little personal trainer right on your wrist.