I don't fall in love with electronics easily, but the brand new Polar M200 has—wait for it—almost stolen my heart. (Why almost? Because its older brother, the M400, was my first heart rate crush, and you never really forget your first, right?)
The M200 is the newest iteration of the Polar Heart Rate running watches, and it's simple and beautiful.
Simple as in, just two buttons. If one doesn't do the job, the other will! (Reason #1 for infatuation: No complications, no unspoken expectations.)
Simple as in, an interface that is logical and easy to understand. (Infatuation reason #2: Do not say you want tacos when you really want steak and then get mad at me when I make tacos.)
Simple as in, all the stats you need—heart rate (average, max, current), distance, pace (in all iterations: fastest, average, current), calories burned (based on your individual height/weight/gender), elevation gain/lost—and none that you don't. (Infatuation reason #3: No unnecessary baggage please.)
Simple as in an, affordable at $150. (Infatuation reason #5: It knows how to budget!)
Simple as in—wait for it—no chest strap!
Yes, the M200 has what tech geeks call optical heart rate. #Motherrunners like me call it a dime-size device on the back of the watch that—this is where I cut and pasted from the Internet— measures your heart rate using a methodology called photoplethysmography (PPG). PPG is a technical term for shining light into the skin and measuring the amount of light that is scattered by blood flow. (Want more info? Here's a basic explanation.)
Technology aside, the M200 is very accurate, according to my unscientific tests: going for three runs while wearing the M400 on one wrist (and the chest strap) and the M200 on the other, the beats per minute were almost beat-for-beat synced.
So if your relationship to heart rate straps is like my kids' relationship to cauliflower (no.thank.you!), then the M200 has your name on it.
But it truly, truly proves what an amazing #motherrunner partner it is when you connect it to Polar Flow.
The Polar Flow website dissects your run, and, among other helpful states, gives you Training Load. Around the heart rate challenges, we call that the Injury Window. For this demanding run, my body needed 15 hours of recovery to keep the injury window fully closed. (I could run easier within that time, but not harder in the next 15 hours if I wanted to recover well and stay injury free.) I mean, whose partner pays that much attention to them?
Ok, enough about my tech crush. We've got a Polar M200 to share with two lucky #motherrunners. Here's how to enter: In the Comments section below this post on our website, tell us: What or who has stolen your heart recently? Two lucky ladies will win.
The details: This running giveaway sweepstakes is open to those over 18 and residents of the United States and Canada. Part of a series of weekly running giveaways, it begins on 10/26/16 and ends on 11/1/16. We will announce two random winners on our Facebook page on 11/3/16, as well as notifying the winners by email. One entry per person. The value of each prize is $150. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Void where prohibited by law.