Finally Using My Garmin

I’ve had my Garmin Forerunner 305 for almost exactly a year now and until today I’ve never used it for any function other than watching my time/distance tick off on the main screen. Today my training schedule called for a 4 x 1600 run at race pace, and I finally decided to explore some other function of my Garmin.

I didn’t have much time to explore pre-run, but I did find the interval function and set it up for my run.


I set my repeat distance for 1 mile, my rest distance for .25 mile and my reps at 4.

To get to this screen go to: training > workouts > interval. Then I chose Distance/Rest Distance, but there are also time based options.

The one thing that I didn’t realize was that it would no longer show me my pace. I was aiming at running at 8:00 min/mile pace, but because I couldn’t see what pace I was running I had to estimate. I ran each of my intervals at what I felt like was my desired race pace.

I really liked that the screen counted down my distance (instead of counting up), it also beeped several times loudly when it was time for my rest distance. It kept up with my remaining reps (which I always have a hard time with). Very cool!

When I got back to my car and reviewed my lap info I realized that I actually ran faster than my desired pace (not necessarily a bad problem). I ran 3 out of 4 of my 1 mile repeats at a sub-8:00 pace.

Mile 1 – 7:49, Mile 2 – 7:42, Mile 3 – 7:55, Mile 4 – 8:07.

I was quite exhausted by my last rep; I actually considered ending the workout at 3 reps. I knew I’d feel better about myself if I pushed through and finished instead of giving up though.

I was STARVING by lunch time, and knew I needed volume! I made a huge Perfect Baked Potato.

My toppings included:

  • Arugula (stole this idea from Caitlin’s HTP Swaps and Additions post)
  • Provolone slice
  • Sautéed veggies (broccoli, onion and mushrooms)
  • Tbsp of hummus and Tbsp of Sour Cream


Now I’m snacking on a yogurt mess.


Yogurt, Raw Oats, Strawberries, Banana. See what I mean about a mess …. ?


My curiosity was peaked after this morning’s run and I decided to spend some time with my Garmin (and manual) this afternoon.

I figured out that the function I should have been using is actually the Advanced Workout. Found right under the interval option.

The manual suggested setting up Advanced Workout’s in Garmin’s Training Center and then importing the workouts into the Forerunner. I set up two workouts and scheduled them on the calendar.

There are several different options available, but I used the base distance option for my 3 Mile Easy run for tomorrow and the Tempo (HR) option for Thursday’s Tempo Run. (I took out the heart rate info and changed it to speed instead).


Confession: I’ve never truly understood how to properly do a tempo run. I get that the point is to raise your lactic acid threshold by maintaining a fast clip for an extended period of times, but I’ve seen many different runners do them differently. Feel free to critique my steps above and offer any advice you may have. My schedule actually called for a 55 min Tempo, but I felt that seemed excessive. Thoughts?

Once I created the workouts I was able to import them into my Forerunner. To access them you simple choose the workout you want to do from your list.


Anyway … if you are like me and have only used your Garmin for its most basic functions, I hope this post will give you a little insight and curiosity to explore the other functions available.



Filed under Garmin, Gear, pictures, Tips/Tricks

3 responses to “Finally Using My Garmin

  1. Nadine

    oooohh this is perfect!! I use the interval workout all the time and wanted to tell you that you CAN see your pace, just hit the down arrow key anytime and it will bring you back to the regular screens that show pace/hr/distance — you can flip through these as the intervals are still running (it took me a while to figure that out, I was afraid if I touched anything I’d mess up the interval!)

    But THANKS for the advanced workout info – I was definitely intimidated by it at first, but you make it look simple!

  2. Thanks! That’s great. I’ll have to explore my Garmin more. I’m like you and only using it for the time/distance/speed, so we’ll see what I do now 🙂

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