Garmin Forerunner 235 GPS Running Watch Review

Garmin Forerunner 235 GPS Running Watch Review
  • Our Rating


Overall, the Garmin Forerunner 235 is a great option for moderate to active runners who want to bring their training routine to a higher level. It is one of the best all-around devices in its category to purchase this year.

If you are looking for a high-tech device to track your running activities, then the Garmin Forerunner 235 GPS running watch should be on your wish list as it features many advanced features like training feedback, heart rate analysis, or running dynamics.

I’ve been using it since last Christmas, and in this review, I’ll show you an overview of this unit and some reasons why it becomes a popular option for many people.

Garmin Forerunner 235 GPS Running Watch Review

garmin forerunner 235 gps running watch review

My new Garmin 235…


What Are You Buying?

1. Design

Though it’s rare to see stylish sports watches, Garmin 235 is probably among the better-looking devices you can purchase. It is available in 3 colour combinations: grey and black, red and black, and frost blue and black.

This unit comes with a classic round-faced colour screen which is crisp and straightforward to read, with enough space to display 4 stats on 2 customisable screens. Though it lacks touchscreens, you can have 5 side buttons instead to navigate through its simple menus.

The strap is made of soft perforated silicone to allow for a less sweaty and more comfortable run. This is especially helpful over long distances when have to wear it tighter on your wrist to measure the best precision from the integrated optical sensor.

2. Heart rate monitor

The Forerunner 235 uses an advanced optical sensor to track heart rate from the wrist. This is important to help you understand how your body is working and make detailed plans to improve your fitness and health.

Also, this feature powers the VO2 Max reading, which shows you the maximum oxygen level you would use to keep fit while working out.

Among other devices at the same price, I think this is one of the best models for monitoring your heart rate and other indicators in the body.

3. Run tracking and metrics

There are 4 sports modes: Cycle, Run Indoor, Run, and Other. You would easily customise 2 data screens with 4 fields to have your own display for each mode. Outdoor runs can be tracked by GPS and GLONASS while an onboard accelerometer will provide speed, distance, and pace metrics for indoor runs.

While there are some question marks with the accuracy, the overall performance is great. More importantly, you would also see heart rate, heart rate zone, cadence, as well as vibrating and audio alerts.

4. Activity tracker

The Garmin Forerunner 235 isn’t only a running watch, it is also an activity tracker which can learn your daily routine and automatically set goals to achieve. The main display has an inactivity bar which would creep around its face when you are on your backside and an accelerometer to keep tabs on the overall distance and step count covered.

How Easy Is It To Use?

By increasing the display’s size to 1.23 inches and slightly boosting the resolution, it is much simpler for runners to adjust the features and keep track of current measurements.

Also, the manufacturer installs 2 buttons on the right side (back and start) and 3 buttons on the left side (up, down, and backlight). Along with an intuitive on-screen interface, I would easily navigate through the menus.

As for the app, it might be a bit challenging to navigate because Garmin might try to cram a little bit too many features into the Connect app. While there is a variety of options and functions to explore, you can easily get lost in various submenus.

What Accessories Are Included?

In addition to the 235 running watch, this package also includes a Lithium Polymer battery which can operate the unit for up to 11 hours. Also, there is a charging connector with a small size and small clip hook so that you can hook it securely on the side of your running watch and charge quickly via USB.

What We Think About It?


  • Accurate heart rate and GPS monitor
  • Very light and thin design
  • Easy to read under direct sunlight
  • The interface can be customised easily
  • Smart notifications to receive incoming call alerts and emails


  • Some issues with intermittent syncing
  • There is no integrated storage for music

Anything Else You Should Know?

In addition to these main features, there are some other functions that can be helpful. These include a stopwatch, automatic updates for daylight saving, an alarm clock, weather information, calendar sync, and Find My Phone feature.

The battery would last for up to 11 hours, making it an ideal choice for fast runners who often tackle runs around 100 kilometres.

The Garmin Forerunner 235 can be a good option for runners at most levels who want to improve their training sessions. However, it is more suitable for those who take semi-serious performance rather than casual runners because there are some more affordable options that are equipped with basic features.


Overall, the Garmin Forerunner 235 is a great option for moderate to active runners who want to bring their training routine to a higher level.

With a heart-rate monitor, accurate GPS, and many other features like a light and thin design, a customisable interface, it is one of the best all-around devices to purchase this year. The only thing I wish this device had is the capability to load and stream music itself. But that’s not something to keep you from being thoroughly satisfied with the Garmin Forerunner 235.

Where To Buy?

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