The M600 device is one of the latest sports smart watches to hit the market. Powered by Android Wear, Polar's latest creation cleverly combines the world of sports wear and smart watch technology for Android and iOS users. Enhancing your day to day life, while allowing you to get the most out of your running.
To see how the M600 dealt with a variety of training our Content Executive Sorrell put the watch through its paces as she builds her training base for the Boston Marathon in spring. From the lengthier runs, to short, speedier sessions, and even an exercise class or two.
Going the distance
Long runs are the key component to any marathon training yet this can often mean two hours or more on the road without much company. Luckily for us, that’s where the M600 was on hand to provide some entertainment.
Music at the flick of your wrist
Music is one of the easiest ways to stop your run from turning into a slog and it’s an area that Polar have covered. Having a favourite playlist to hand is one of the quickest ways to melt away the miles and give yourself an extra boost, especially at the tail end of a long run. After storing music to the watch itself, or loading up your Spotify, the wireless technology of the M600 means you can easily have music on the go. So, leave your phone at home, take your Bluetooth headphones and let the music play on.
Keep on track
Turning longer training runs into something of an adventure is one of the ways to make them more interesting. But as with any new route, there’s also even greater potential to get lost. As well as integrated GPS, the M600 provides the use of Google Maps. So, if your escapades wander off the beaten path, you can pinpoint your location with the tap of the watch face. This is also admittedly an advantage for post-run re-fuelling if you need to look up the nearest breakfast spot.
Ease and speed
Speed sessions can often be the most difficult jigsaw piece of the training puzzle. Yet, they’re a must for improvement; whether it’s focusing on 100 metre strides or mile repeats. The M600’s clear visibility of pace and time and a long list of added bonuses, means that it definitely held up in the speed stakes.
Quick stop and start
Starting up and stopping the M600 is super easy – another plus for interval sessions. To pause, you can either swipe the screen left, or take the manual approach of pressing down the front button. While the touchscreen is one of the bonuses, keeping these manual options is where Polar do well to not get too smart.
Complicating things when pushing on these harder sessions is the last thing you need and, thankfully, the M600 didn’t. Extra benefits, such as automatic lap functionality, help to make any time spent on the track much easier with just the click of a button. This also helps in tracking pace alongside the automatic pace reading, without having to do any mental arithmetic. This means you can maintain a greater level of consistency throughout a session, helping you to progress overall.
Heart rate on hand
The M600 measures your heart rate as and when you have it on your wrist. Knowing how fast you’re pushing is always helpful, and with the automatic 1-5 heart rate zones you will know when you need to ease off or increase your speed, thanks to a colour change and a little vibration on the wrist. As every individual is different, you can also define your own zone limits on Polar Flow.
As well as benefitting your running and being the perfect marathon training partner, the M600 has a whole-host of extra elements that will help you on your way, even off the road.
Cross training companion
Cross training is key to any training regime. It allows you to work on other areas of your body that running day in day out won’t, as well as giving you mind a break from the tarmac. The M600 combines smart watch functions together with tracking your runs, without overlooking other activities. Whether it be a kettle bell class or an hour of yoga - the M600 can monitor both, logging heart rate, calories burned and time active.
The watch can also log cycles, as well as being fully water-resistant for swimming in water above 10 meters. This functionality is a huge bonus if you’re also thinking about branching out into the triathlon world.
The Polar Flow application is a particular plus point of the M600. It’s where the world of the smart watch and the sports watch combine perfectly to enhance your running and give you an extra level of insight. In tracking sleep activity throughout the evening, the app also gives you an insight into the other areas that should improve your training that lie outside of movement.
Rest and recovery time are fundamental for progression and vital for long distance running. Yet, they’re so easy to overlook. From the ‘My day’ functionality, it's also easy to open the app on your phone straight from the watch and take a glance at all your key stats; from how restless your night's sleep was, to how your recovery for the week is shaping up. A welcome reminder when juggling work, training and a social life, that sometimes some sleep is what is actually needed.
Whether you’re training for your first marathon or running just for the love of it, the M600 will enhance your runs without over complicating things. It could even inspire you to kick-start your 2017 training goals.