Polar Grit X Review: A Superb Sports Watch
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If you are a serious trail runner, swimmer, mountain biker, hiker, and downhill skier, you should go for the latest addition of Polar watches, notably Polar Grit X. It includes everything such as overnight recovery measurements, heart rate tracking, and outdoor-specific features like downhill and uphill stats, route planning, refueling advice for long training events, and sessions.
This sports watch has secret depths, and you can use it for your intended purpose, such as working out, cycling, and running – that you consider a serious contender in the sports game. Grit X watch deserves to be thought of as a challenge to different market-leaders.
What do You Need to Know about Polar Grit X?
It is the MIL-spec tested rougher and stricter version of Vantage M and Vantage V that we saw last year, and it adds numerous new features for those who show their interest in different outdoor activities.
Now, there is a route guidance and route planning, including Strava Segments support. The automatic “Hill Splits” helps to track the performance easily while going downhill or uphill. There are water and food intake alarm systems, and it confirms that you are keeping yourself fueled when the workout extends for more than 1.5 hours.
You may have examined similar features with the Polar’s diverse variety of wearables. They include GPS support, heart-rate tracking, in addition to a barometric altimeter and compass, which this watch uses for the hill split feature. Besides, Grit X has a long battery life; it offers up to 40 hours of heart rate and GPS usage per charge.
The feature that is not present in Grit X as compared to costly Polar Vantage V is a feature of recovery advice, called Recovery Pro. This feature allows you to know how much time you can rest before going to work out again.
Price and Competition
Grit X is one of the best sports watches, and the price is £390. In this price range, there is a lot of competition, mainly from Garmin, a renowned market leader.
When it comes to talking about Garmin Fenix 6 Pro, yet costly but offering more features, which include onboard maps, music playback support, plus excellent battery life and having numerous training tools. However, its price is 200 pounds more than Grit X.
Garmin Forerunner 945 is close in price and features to Polar Grit X, it goes for about 500 pounds, and it is the best sports tracking watch. It includes multiple features, the Fenix 6 Pro has; however, in a cheaper, and lighter package. Still, if you do not want to invest 500 pounds, another fantastic sports watch is Garmin Forerunner 245 Music. This watch has music storage, too, and it has different features any runner wants for only 270 pounds.
Design of Grit X
There is not much in Grit X to look at. As compared to the other displays of smartwatches, its LCD is dull, and the watch case is plain. It has a stainless-steel bezel and a plastic body and is present in three colors: silver with a white strap, silver with a green belt, and all black.
The Polar Grit X lacks aesthetic, but it more than makes up for when talking about practicality. The watch is lightweight and sturdy, and it does not stand unique on the wrist that it is demanding to fit under the cuffs of the shirt. Also, it is quite comfortable to wear for a long time, which is essential because excellent sleep tracking and heart rate monitoring means it is intended to be worn all the time.
Though the touchscreen does not work the best – it felt slow and laggy to respond similar to Polar Vantage V – the five circular buttons of Grit X (three on the right, two on the left) work best to navigate numerous functions and features, mainly during exercise.
Associate it with water resistance to 100 meters and best screen readability in the outdoor; you have a watch suitable for sports tracking as compared to others present in the market. It is a reasonably designed watch – not flashy or fussy; however, it does a great job.
Sports Tracking and New Features
As you think of an excellent sports watch, Grit X is full of analysis and sports tracking features, and for the most part, the same is found on the Vantage V. It includes an excellent quality of Running Power, which focuses on offering a live estimate of the work amount you put into a run; hence, you can train steadily, while toiling up the hills.
Also, you get an entire sleep tracking, and it is among the best you have seen on a fitness watch. Grit X tracks numerous stages of sleep – REM, deep, light, and interruptions – however, it has the heart rate monitoring to track the average rate of breathing and heart rate variability during sleep. The impression is to advise on how great you have recovered from a training exertion overnight, and while today is an excellent day to train, take a complete rest or take it easy.
FitSpark Traininy System
There is a Polar’s FitSpark training manual, which suggests regular workouts across three major categories (Strength, Cardio, and Supportive) varying on your training history, general fitness, and recovery levels. These are comprehensive on the watch, including the stickman animations in some cases – with supportive video content on the Polar Flow site. By following the Polar’s suggestions, you avoid injuring yourself and overtraining while coordinating the training load; hence you improve an overall level of fitness.
As you see, there is an adequate sports tracking front and for more activities, from treadmill pounding and regular road running to cycling. Also, there is a built-in swim tracking, with not only stroke detection and lap counting for swimming indoor (it will recognize butterfly, breaststroke, backstroke, and freestyle); however, also tracking outdoor swimming. Even when you are in the water, it can track your heart rate, a feature that numerous rival wearables do not offer.
A new feature is on-device routing, which supports route planning and turn-by-turn features. It is an area in which Polar is lagging behind Garmin for some time; hence, it is great to see some advances; it appears if it has the same way to go to match the on-watch mapping of Garmin.
The last new and significant feature is Polar’s Fueling, and it is the best of the lot. It runs longer than 1.5 hours and is used for rides where you need to top up on drink and food along the way. For setting up, you enter an intensity estimate and event duration, add the amount in grams included in every chosen gel serving. When you do this, Grit X will recall you the same when you need to top up. If your ride or run turns to be less or more intense as compared to your starting estimate (depending on the live data of heart rate), the watch adjusts the feeding times automatically; hence you do not run out of the juice at the decisive moment.
Besides, you can also set up manual drink and feeding alerts, to recall you to take food and water at specific time intervals.
Performance of Polar Grit X
How well does all this come together? In many ways, it is excellent. This watch is an ideal heart rate reader as well as a wrist-borne monitor. Using a combination of green, orange, and red LEDs, it has a similar heart rate report from the MZ-3 belt I used as a reference to within one or two beats, and it reports similar minimum, maximum, and average values for every run as well.
This watch has an accurate GPS. You can select a combination of Galileo and GPS systems or Glonass and GPS, and there is a Supported GPS, too, to help you have a quick positional lock. Generally, I have had no significant problems.
Best Exercise Companion
Additionally, in the last month, I have seen Grit X a reliable and easy to use exercise companion. The screen is readable and crisp in daylight and, though the touchscreen is laggy, the clicky and large buttons – give a light dig of haptic feedback while pressing them – help to navigate the UI so comfortable I hardly observed.
Zone Lock Feature
I found the Zone Lock feature (also present on the Vantage M and V) to be most useful. It allows you to set a power zone or heart rate manually to ‘lock-in’ when you exercise, and this Grit X will alter you while straying outside that area. I am a big fan of the web portal and Polar Flow app, which shows your training data and stats in a clean, clear, and modern fashion, as compared to the ugly Connect UI of Garmin.
Finally, its battery life is excellent, but not up to more than 40-hour GPS usage. What I found is the Polar Grit X can last 6 to 7 days between charges with moderate use of GPS (3-5 hours) and continuous monitoring of heart rate enabled.
Unfortunately, several Polar Grit X elements do not cut the mustard. I have synchronized it with the iPhone to be highly patchy and annoyingly unreliable. This watch is intended to sync every hour automatically to keep the battery demands to a minimum; however, it usually failed to do even this. You can kick off sync manually, it is merely enough; however, I usually had to toggle Bluetooth restart or on and off the app to get it to work.
When it comes to accuracy and distance, I found its GPS to be on the money, the way it performs when you lose the signal is a little weird. Instead of predicting your position depending on your previous speed, whenever the signal gets lost, it holds the position at that point, it jumps ahead while getting a lock again.
If you go through a tunnel during your ride or run or under a bridge, your pace reduces dramatically; it picks up again while re-emerging. That is irritating if you run strictly to a specific power zone or pace, and it can knock you out of the stride if you have no idea what is happening.
- The sports tracking on Polar Grit X is principally detailed and accurate, with every exercise covered in it.
- Get an excellent 40 hours of GPS battery life, and Grit X will last more than a week between the charges when you exercise often.
- The FuelWise feature is useful to help you plan and keep doing the nutrition strategies for exercise that lasts more than 90 minutes.
- The sleep tracking of Polar is ahead of the several brands with comprehensive insights on your rest that feed into exercise suggestions the following day. However, you may see some issues with accuracy.
- This watch gauges running power, a good niche stat, but another way to judge the effort levels without connecting to a foot post, making it accessible to more runners.
- Polar Grit X includes an app called Komoot; you can use different routes and follow directions accordingly. Although it has its issues, it is still a significant step up from a primary pointer-and-line navigation you get on inexpensive watches.
- A new feature ‘HillSplitter’ is primary, and it is not that beneficial in its current state, particularly in comparison with the best ClimbPro on the top-end watches of Garmin.
- Sometimes, sleep tracking goes off completely – for two weeks of using this watch, I get inaccurate info on my sleep.
- The software is a little laggy sometimes, and syncing activities required me to plug the Grit X into a PC because the app is unable to connect with my watch. Also, I needed to do a factory reset to get rid of draining the battery too fast, an issue the Grit X arrived with.
- While creating routes outside the home area, you need to pay to use the Komoot app.
- There is no Recovery Pro feature on the Polar Grit X, reserving it for the Vantage V watch.
- Often, the touchscreen is not responsive, and it is not necessary given that Grit X has five buttons to navigate its menus.
Should I Consider Buying Polar Grit X?
Well! If you are looking for a reasonably priced watch, Grit X is best. It offers something more as compared to what you find on watches such as Coros Apex and Garmin Forerunner 245. At the same time, it does not compete for the supremacy of the Garmin Forerunner 945 and Fenix 6 Pro range, which are highly priced in the market.