Review: ASICS AG01 GPS Running Watch

Asics GPS 01It’s been at least a couple of months since I started using the new ASICS AG01 GPS running watch. In order for me to be familiar and memorise the functions and the corresponding buttons, I played with it quite a few times on and off my runs. Just like I do with any new gadget. And here’s my honest to goodness without bias review of the product.

The watch is light enough on your wrist. And with four classic colours that you can choose from, there’s one that perfectly matches your personality. (Click here for more on ASICS AG01 GPS watch).

The watch has an easy to read large liquid crystal display. In the clock mode, you can easily read the current time and date. Just press the LIGHT button on the upper left to turn on the backlight. Press it a bit longer to turn the Night Mode On/Off. When the Night Mode is on, the backlight doesn’t turn off while you are navigating through the menus and watch functions during night or early morning runs, or in the dark. In the such conditions, when the Night Mode is off, the backlight will automatically turn off after 10 seconds.

The buttons are well-laid out along the four sides of the watch, which allows you to press the right buttons whenever you need to check your data while running. The START/STOP button is strategically placed on the upper right side of the watch which makes it easier to press when you start and end your run. It’s 2 o’clock position keeps you from accidentally pressing the stop button while in the middle of the run, since your hand even when it bends back barely comes in contact with it.

The ASICS AG01 during an actual use. It displays Split Time,, Number of Lap(s), Total Distance. You ca choose to display other run data in the Settings Mode.

The ASICS AG01 during an actual use. It displays Split Time,, Number of Lap(s), Total Distance. You ca choose to display other run data in the Settings Mode.

In Run mode, press the VIEW button for 3 seconds to turn on the GPS. And I tell you, it only takes less than a minute to get a GPS signal. And this means that you don’t have to wait for ages before you can hit the road! In my recent run, I tried running in the car park (near the railings) of SM Marikina. And it amazed me because the GPS signal is two bars strong!

The three run display options are very convenient to use since I can choose which information to display depending on the kind of training I employ on any given training day. In my case, Display 1 shows my current pace and the total distance covered. This option is recommended for general run trainings and during races. It helps me track my pace and the mileage already covered. This allows me to adjust my pace at any give time depending on how many kilometres I have left until I reach the finish line. Display 2 shows split time and the total distance, which is recommended for mileage runs or LSDs, since you won’t be more particular about your pace. Display 3 shows my split time and the lap distance, which is perfect for my speed/sprint trainings. It allows me to keep track of the time it took me to complete the same distance. And the clear two-liner LCD gives me an unobstructed view of the data while I’m running.

Well, there are other run data that you can choose to display such as the calorie consumption relative to distance or time, etc. Just play around with it and see what works best for you.

Saving run data is simple and easy as 1-2-3. First, I simply press the START/STOP button to end my workout. Next, I just press the LAP/SAVE button to save the run data. And I’m good to go. I can now check my run data.

The MODE button takes me to the Run Data Function. It’s the third menu from the default clock function. The START/STOP button scrolls through the information of the most recent run data. The LAP/SAVE button scrolls through the previously saved run data. The good thing about the ASICS AG01 GPS watch is that you won’t ever accidentally erase your saved run data because you need to press a different button – the VIEW button, for 3 seconds in order to clear the data. And it’s rather a smart GPS watch because it will still prompt you if you want to proceed deleting your run data.

Photo Credit: Run Lipa

Photo Credit: Run Lipa

I sweat a lot when I run. And when the temperature starts to creep up, I normally pour water on my head or flush my face with water to keep my body temperature down and feel refreshed. And I don’t need to remove the watch off my wrist just to wash my hands or get a splash of water during runs. No worries even during sudden heavy downpours because the watch is built to resist water from penetrating even through its buttons. But I strongly suggest to refrain from pressing the buttons during this condition.

As suggested by Ma’am Judith Staples as she knows more about watches than I do, I picked the ASICS AG01 GPS watch in elegant white. As we all know that anything white gets easily stained, taking care of my watch is very important in order to maintain its clean look. After every use, I make sure to wipe it with a damp cloth to remove any dirt and sweat to prevent them from drying up along the straps.

Keeping a record of my run data is pretty convenient. I downloaded the AG01 Run app from ASICS website (click here to download the app). On your first time to launch app, you may encounter this error: “A Java Exception has Occured”. Don’t worry. Your Java is just out of date. Download the Java updated version HERE. After successful installation of the new java update, you will be prompted to delete old version of java. A pop window will appear to verify your new version of Java. Please note that it doesn’t work with Google Chrome. Use Internet Explore for this process.

Each time I want to upload my run data, I simply launch the app, connect the watch using the USB adapter that came with the package and transfer the data. The USB adapter has two metal pegs on both sides to keep it in place while being connected. The saved data allow me to review my training and race performances, as there is a line graph of showing my pace relative to the distance I ran.

This is how the user interface of the AG01 Run app looks like once you launch the app.

This is how the user interface of the AG01 Run app looks like once you launch it.

A function which one might think is not as important as the other functions is the TIMER function. You can use this functionality when you do a marathon or ultramarathons. The ALARM function can also be used for this purpose. In my case, I would take my energy gels at an interval of 45 minutes. I just set the Timer to 45 minutes and press the START/STOP button to commence the countdown. An alarm sounds off three seconds before the Timer sets to zero. Then press the START/STOP button to repeat the cycle. This way I don’t miss taking my energy gel at the right interval at the right time. The Timer alarm will sound off even if the Alarm function is turned off.

In the Settings Menu, I have tried to turn on the Auto Lap function every 1 kilometre while I did a 10km run. The beauty of this feature is that it shows the pace and time it took me to complete each kilometre. I find this useful to analyse my run, like at what point I slowed down and why I slowed down.

With its sleek and classic sporty design in elegant white, I go to work with it and still look casually smart, as it goes well even with leather shoes, long sleeves shirt and a pair of black pants.

Verdict: 9 Stars for this baby! For a price of P7,950.00, ASICS AG01 GPS Running Watch is a good catch for a GPS watch with full functionality and more, that every runner needs. It’s a perfect watch for any runner who aspires for new PRs, better finish times and awesome race performance. The only downside that I could think of this one is that the white strap doesn’t stay white at all. This can also be true for all other watches with a white wrist strap. But with the overall functionality, I’m really impressed with what the watch can do.

ASICS AG01 GPS running watches are now available at all L Time Studio shops. Get yours today and be on your way to a fitter, stronger and better runner! So, I’ll see you on the roads then!

For basic operations, refer to the ASICS AG01 GPS Running Watch Quick Guide.

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