Garmin Cycle GPS – Edge 800

Posted: December 8, 2012 by Ben Weber in Cycling, English, Equipment, Training
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Garmin Edge 800

Another new acquisition is something that is already useful for training and will be very useful for the cycle tour of the UK and the entire journey: a Garmin Edge 800 GPS unit. We have just the unit with the bike mount – you can get it with heart and cadence monitors for it to provide a good overview of your training developments, though we will get that later. For now, just the GPS unit itself is good.

Garmin statsThe unit is touch screen, shows the map of where you are (precise city navigator maps are available for download from the Garmin website), and it is incredible as to actually how precise the location is: the unit records your journey can you can review it on the computer when you get back home – when you do, you can see even when you just headed back a metre or so to check something…

It took a while to detect the satellites when we first set it up, but after that, it has been quick. Hopefully when we are in the UK it will have no problems in picking up the different satellites up there. You can plan your route using the Garmin software, though there is other better software that you can use online – but I will talk about them in a bit (though the main problem is that in planning the course through being able to see the elevation profile – incredibly important for working out how hard a ride is going to be – distance is far less important!).

Uploading routes is straightforward enough, then you just find your route and you’re ready to go, with the route and cues showing nice and clearly on your screen. If you don’t have a route, you can start the timer and record a new one following the path you take – very simple to do.

At the end of it all, looking at the journey you have taken back on your computer, (opposed to when you are planning) you can see the elevation profile (with total elevation gain/loss) of where you have been and all sorts of nice information about the route – total time; total time peddling / total stops; average speed / temperature / pace… and as you do the same courses over time, it is great to be able to compare everything, as all is tracked. It will also show the number of calories it calculates that you burn during your training session – how accurate this is, however, is another question as many reviewers commented that the best algorithms for calculating this have been patented by other companies…

Plenty of other Garmin units out there, though definitely would recommend this if you can afford to fork out a bit more. Here in São Paulo, Casa de Pedra sells the unit along with other Garmin models – check them out on their online store.

Also, you should be able to check out the last route we cycled using the GPS at this link… São Paulo – Atibaia – 25 Nov 2012.

Garmin charts

Atibaia map

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