With an unimpeachable reputation for bullet-proof activity-oriented watches, Casio’s new G-SHOCK GBD-800UC and GBA-800UC are no-brainers for anyone seeking a personal training device on their wrist. Styling gets a major upgrade with these new models, and the neutral colorways will match your workday or weekend clothing just as well as your gym garb, making it harder to leave the watch in your dresser drawer along with your motivation.
The Power Trainer Series is all about tracking, timing, and, ultimately, tackling your workouts. Whether you’re setting up sophisticated interval programs or simply counting steps and calories toward a daily goal, the GBD-800UC and GBA-800UC have you covered with a bevy of elaborate, yet easily operated, functions.
The watches’ accelerometer turns itself on and starts counting your steps when you start moving. When you stop, it returns to power-saving mode. You can set a daily goal for steps taken, and the sub-dial will display your progress toward that goal throughout the day. Unlike many fitness trackers that ask you to move through menus for your daily step status, the watch sub-dial won’t let you avoid this motivating info.
When you use the interval timer feature, that same sub-dial gives you an intuitive and instantaneous visual monitor of how close you are to completing an interval. Feel like you’re going to blow up before finishing that 60-second mid-run sprint? Well, a quick visual reference can help you dig deeper for that extra push to the end. Impatient about properly warming up? The sub-dial will keep you mellow until your body is actually ready to go harder. With 20 programmable 5-interval programs and the ability to combine those programs if needed, it’s easy to set up and store enough workouts to cover even the most elaborate training programs.
All of those timers can be set up via the G-SHOCK Connected app, which communicates with the watch via Bluetooth. This app will also generate a wide range of useful post-workout data using graphs and charts that provide at-a-glance legibility. You can zoom in on a single set of short intervals, or you can pan way out for a whole month’s worth of workouts. Both perspectives can be highly motivating.
The lap timer is equally helpful, and these models can store up to 200 lap records, which is perfect for those who like to improvise a workout in real-time based on how their body is feeling (rather than sticking to a rigid interval program). Either way, the watch will store your data for analysis after the workout.
World travelers will appreciate this new G-SHOCK collection’s ability to update its time/date four times per day, by accessing an internet time server via Bluetooth with the G-SHOCK Connected app, as well as the watches’ ability to set itself to the time zones of over 300 cities. You’ll need to be connected to your phone for it to do all that, but that shouldn’t be a problem when carting your daily carry items around when traveling.
The watches do even more for the traveler, however. Lose track of your smartphone, and the Find It Feature will locate it for you. Power down your phone for a break from blue screens at night, and let the watch’s alarm clock wake you up. If you’re suffering jet lag and need a jog, then head out on an evening run and let the automatic LED light illuminate your workout data.
Updates to the bands are going to help this watch fit more people more comfortably. These include “wings” on the inside of the rubber strap near the lugs that smooth out the fit, a newly designed anti-sliding clasp, extra holes for those with extra small or large wrists, and a fine adjustment mechanism. Once again, these features eliminate excuses not to get the GBD-800UC and GBA-800UC and on your wrist where it belongs so you can keep yourself in top shape.