For those who love to spend their weekends in the great outdoors, there’s no better feeling than getting back from a trail. But how far did you go? And are you more fit than the last time you went out? Those answers can be hard to find.
The latest sports watches and advanced wearable fitness technology can give you the answers and offer unprecedented information about your outdoor hobbies. Whether you hike, run, cycle or ski, James Stables from wearable tech experts Wareable rounds up the best wearable technology to make the most of your love of the outdoors.
Garmin Fenix 2
The ultimate adventurer’s fitness watch, the Fenix 2’s list of supported outdoor activities is longer than the Russian team’s Winter Olympics medal haul. From hiking to trail running to cross-country skiing, the GPS-enabled Fenix 2 tracks it all. Its chest strap heart rate monitor adds tons of extra insights, from your running cadence to accurate calorie burn.
LG G Watch R
One of the top smartwatches of 2014, the LG G Watch R is the perfect buy for those with a love of the outdoors. Not only is the rugged build reminiscent of epic sports watches, the G Watch R has its own special hiking watch face, which displays steps walked, altitude and compass right on your wrist.
Suunto Ambit3 Peak
Another explorer’s best friend, all Ambit watches come with walking and hiking routes from sports community site Movescount.com, and the ability to map your own. Add up to 50 hours of GPS battery life and every metric tracked along the way, and you have a superb all-round sports watch built for the outdoors.
Sony SmartWatch 3
Another Android Wear smartwatch, the SmartWatch 3 is the only member of the current fitness watch crop to boast built-in GPS technology, meaning that it’s not reliant on your smartphone to track your outdoor jaunts.
Boasting some of the best wrist-based heart rate technology, the Basis Peak is all about continuous monitoring of your ticker. It will automatically detect when you’re walking, running or cycling and feedback on your heart’s activity, as well as skin temperature and sweat too. Clever stuff.
As well as tracking your steps, distances and calories, these connected insoles are great for winter hikes as they also feature temperature control up to 40 degrees centigrade. The Digitsoles started life as a Kickstarter project, but are now taking orders online.
Victoria’s Secret Incredible Sports Bra
For ladies that hike, the Victoria’s Secret Incredible is a top sports bra with built-in fitness technology. Electrodes on the inside track heart activity for accurate calorie burn data from treks, walks, runs and cycles.
The new superwatch from Fitbit blends all the latest wearable exercise tracking technology with smartphone notifications, which means you can get your messages and calls on the hills without rooting through your backpack. While GPS and continuous heart rate monitoring put it among an elite few, the Surge has another trick up its sleeve. While most wearables only suit the male wrist, the Fitbit Surge will come in three sizes; small, large and XL, so it’s perfect for all dedicated hikers.
iPhone 6 + Apple Health
While we wait for the Apple Watch, you can take advantage of the fitness features the iPhone has to offer. With the barometer sensor built into the iPhone 6, it can track elevation as well as steps in its new Apple Health platform. What’s more, Apple Health is compatible with a growing list of third party wearable devices, so you can see all your fitness data in one place.
SMS Audio BioSport In-ear headphones
An unlikely collaboration between Intel and 50 Cent, these SMS Audio headphones do more than just play tunes. The buds double as heart rate monitors, which works with apps such as Runkeeper to add data to your walk, run and cycling tracking. If that wasn’t clever enough, the BioSports harvest power from your smartphones headphone jack, so there are no batteries or charging required.
$150, Intel (top image)
Wareable is the biggest website dedicated to fitness trackers, smartwatches and the biggest news and reviews in wearable technology.