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How's It Working Out?: Garmin vivoactive 3, Part 2

November 30, 2018

 

There are a few things I didn't get to mention yesterday that really make me enjoy the Garmin vivoactive 3. It really blurs the lines between simple tracker, bike computer, and smart watch in a nice form factor. 

 

With it, I do not need to always reach for my Wahoo Bolt when I head outside or hop on the bike. I like to record lots of activities, as I like to share activities that reflect a well-rounded positive active lifestyle. I think it's good to show friends that you rode to the post office or walked to get coffee. It's good to show that you ran the park on a rainy day. 

 

Speaking of rain, the vivoactive 3 is waterproof up to 50 m or so. I keep it on in the shower, and I really don't have to think twice about it. It seems sturdy, but it is not bulky like many of the other Garmin or Suunto watches are. I literally forget it is even on my wrist until it buzzes and alerts me with a new notification. 

 

 

I enjoy the alerts that I receive, and it is handy in a meeting to subtly see who is calling or emailing with a quick glance at my wrist. I can pick up or decline calls, and it works well to alert me to weather updates and things on my calendar. The music controls even help keep my phone tucked away. I can control my Amazon Music feed pretty easily with a watch screen that shows the artist, song, and play controls. 

 

 

One last feature that I really like on the vivoactive 3 is the stress score and breathing app. By selecting the Stress screen, you can choose to start a breathing activity from one to several minutes. It is a simple box breathing technique, similar to that of the Oak app I have used in the past. Breath in for four seconds, hold for four, breath out for four, and hold for four. Repeat.

 

Okay, now I can count, but watching the screen pulse and feeling the buzz from the watch's vibrating cues makes it interesting. I am a big fan of breathing activities like this, and I think this is a great feature, even if it appears a little gimmicky. 

 

The running stress score is a feature I am not really paying much attention to lately, but I would like to check its features out soon. It appears to be a heart rate variability type app, and I need to get around to checking it out. The vivoactive 3 has many features, and it might take a while to get them all sorted out.

 

The vivoactive 3 works neatly with the Garmin Connect app, and I have enjoyed the badges and other things it brings to the table. It is not my go to fitness app like Strava, but it gets me synced to Strava, and it does the job. It gives you the same data in a bigger form factor and allows for easy viewing of trends and such. It has continued to improve over time. 

 

The only setback I have had has been that the Garmin Pay feature isn't supported by my bank. Since I usually have my phone or wallet with me, this isn't too much of an issue (I love using Apple Pay right on the phone). It would be nice to have, but honestly when I go for a run or ride, I always bring the phone or at least leave it in the car not too far away. Maybe one day M and T will support it.  

 

Until then... breathe 1234 hold 1234 exhale 1234 hold 1234. Cha cha cha.

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