Heart rate training. If you are taking your training seriously, a heart rate monitor is something that is crucial in building endurance and getting your fitness to the next level. I got to take the MIO Alpha strapless heart rate monitor for a spin and here is what I found out.
Having no prior experience with heart rate monitors, I was attracted to the MIO Alpha because I’ve heard the common chest strap can be annoying as it starts to slide down the chest when running or during aerobic activities. To test this theory- I borrowed a friends chest strap monitor and used them both. Though I wasn’t exercising during this test (not sweating, which I imagine would be the time for slippage) I didn’t really like the feel of the chest strap. That and you still need a watch, mayhap a fulfilling Garmin Forerunner 235. With the Mio Alpha, it’s just the watch.
Out of the box: Setup was easy enough- a couple buttons and you can get the time set. When used as a watch (without the heart rate monitor [HRM] the USB chargeable battery lasts a few days. When you have the HRM activated, the battery drains much faster.) The wrist band is wide, and it’s not a small watch, but it’s not as long as would be comfortable for my wrist. I was using the last hole on the band to keep it attached. The Mio Alpha has features that are great for training helping keep you within your target heart rate, keeping an elapsed time, showing your max. and min. heart rate for your workout.
Another cool feature is that the Mio Alpha will sync with your bluetooth compatible phone. I used it with the Map My Ride app on my iPhone (5s) and it worked well.
The Mio Alpha seems like a great tool to bring your training up to the next level. If you don’t like the idea of a chest strap heart rate monitor- the Mio Alpha is a good option.
The Mio Alpha retails for $199 and is available through them directly or through a number of other retailers.