Custom Workouts

I am using the custom workout on Garmin Connect for the first time. I have been using random workouts from www.Darebee.com and would like to keep track of my daily workouts.
I like that you have a lot of different exercises already, but many times the names they use, or the names I use are not what Garmin uses. For instance, I am a US Navy Diver. We do an exercise called 8 Count Body Builders. You have Burpees, but no 8 Count Body Builders. I'm told they are similar, but different. I've never been told how to do a Burpee, but I do a lot of 8 Counts. I cringe when people call my 8 Count a 'Burpee" because it sounds less than as "manly" as an 8 Count Body Builder does.

So one suggestion would be for an 'Add Custom Exercise Name' feature in the drop down menu. Something that I can put in "Hello Darlings" as an exercise instead of trying to figure out what you call them in civilian speak, or what Darebee is calling the exercise compared to what Garmin is calling them. And when you add the new named exercise, keep it in my drop down menu.

Another suggestion is to add a feature for repeat. I am doing 9 exercises with a 2 minute rest between each set. For instance today's workout was:

20 lunges
20 Side Leg Raises
20 Squats
20 Climbers
20 Punches
10 Push-ups
10 Plank Jump-ins
10 Side Bridges
20 Flutter Kicks

Of these exercises, a number of them were not included in your drop down menu, which goes back to Suggestion #1.

I did these 3 times with a 2 minute rest after finishing all 9 exercises. I hope I'm making sense here. I would suggest a way to put in all 9 exercises, and then say repeat 2 more times. You have a report for Reps and Sets, however it would be nice to not have to enter all 27 exercises.
  • Rusty, I am completely with you.
    (Note: I am using the German language versions of the fenix 5 and Garmin connect, so for some items I have included the German name in connect in brackets and italic)

    I have a fenix 5 for a few months now and I have been using "Workouts" (Trainings) to "guide" me through my strenght training (Krafttraining) routine. And guiding for me mainly means tracking time (where a training is about reps) or counting down time (for trainings which I want to do for a given time). Obviously connected with the tracking of the activity overall (heart rate, calories, etc.).

    I am training in a gym which is focused on machine supported training, not free weigths Folks in some European countries and Australia will know the chain "Kieser Training", they are comparable to MedX in the States (and basically use the same machines with a few custom modifications).

    Guess what, the machines they use (even if in their basic form you can find many in almost any gym with (strength) machines around the globe) are not part of the extensive list (more on that further down) of exercises that are (now) presented when one selects to put together a strength workout.

    Before the change in Garmin Connect ("GC") (which came together with the last software update also for the different Garmin devices), I had put together a "user defined" (benutzerdefiniertes) workout (Training), which I started on the fenix as a strength workout (Krafttraining), resulting in me being guided through my routine and the session logged as a strength workout in GC.

    The new version of GC now differentiates between different types of workouts (including strength and cardio (which use the same set of exercises ...) and the user defined workout).

    First issue: Garmin never informed their users about the changes and the "new way" device owners should use workouts going forward.
    The first time I went to the gym after I had updated my fenix to software version 6.0, I wanted to start my workout as usual (as a strenght workout) and the fenix claimed that there was no (user) workout available. I assumed that the software update might have deleted the user workout and tracked the session via the basic strength tracking functionality (not sure if this was also changed by the update, I do not remember the strength function to be able to track "laps" of workout / rest / workout / rest before.) When I synched the workout to connect, I noticed that I could now assign an exercise to each "lap" - which I did not do because I do not care enoug about this to do this after every visit to the gym. Then I tried to synch my user defined workout back to the fenix. I got an ok message from Garmin Express (I synch via USB rather than the app, because the app on Windows 10 mobile which I still use does not fully work). However, when I tried to select my user workout for "strenght workout" on the watch, the fenix claimed that there was no workout. I even looked at the files on the watch and found the .fit file for my workout. The watch still claimed that there was none. I did not have the time to go computer nerd and try to figure this out (I know, some users here do analyse their .fit files with all kinds of tools). So for a few weeks now I trained using the basic strength activity tracking rather than my userd defined workout.
    Last Sunday I changed my routine and have now taken this as a trigger to look into the matter again as I need to put together a new workout.
    So when I now went to GC to create the new workout, I saw that I now have choices for the type of workout I want to create ... strength, cardio, ..., user defined.
    I then did some digging in the forums (Garmins own "Support" and "FAQ" pages are useless) and came across the information that the "user defined" workouts do now only work with a user defined activity, but not with the standard activities (like "strength") anymore.

    So here I am, sitting in the same boat as you.
    I now want to create a "Strength" workout and need to select exercises from the drop down, which brings me to the
    Second issue: The selection of available exercises is a mess!
    • There is a plethora of exercises to choose from - with sometimes fantastic names - but simple basics are missing
      • I am sure the hardcore gym community can decipher what a "Mountain Climber on Gliding Discs" (Bergsteiger auf Gleitscheiben) or a "Cat and Camel" (Katze und Kamel) is (ok, the second one I can guess) and it is also very important to that community to distinguish between a "one legged pelvis lift with one foot on a Bosu (whatever that is) ball", ".... on a medicine ball", "... a bank" or "... a foam roll"
      • What about simple basic exercises which you will find in almost every gym like a leg press

    • The sorting of the list is abysmal - this is alphabetic by the first word that is in the exercise name
    What should Garmin do?
    • First of all: allow users to define their own exercise types - just for them personally, not for the community. Alternatively, allow "user defined" workouts (Benutzerdefiniertes Training) back to be combined with any activity.
    • Second, better organise the list of exercises. That might mean redoing the whole dialogue of choosing the exercise, a simple drop down list might not be the right approach.
      • Allow selection by body part / muscle group to be trained (arms, legs, back, ...)
      • Distinguish between free weight exercises and machine supported exercises - especially if you use the same list for cardio workouts
      • Distinguish between strength, cardio, (yoga, ...) exercises
      • Make sure that the basics are covered before adding more or less exotic variances of the same exercise
      • Potentially add short descriptions of the exercises, so that normal users can potentially identify the exercise they are looking for even if they do not know the term that some fitness gurus have come up with. This is especially relevant for the international (not natively English speaking) community, if half of the exercises available are listed with an English name. Example: "Good Morning" is an exercise that probably no-one can identify unless they know this because someone told them (this is an exercise for the back, with or without additional weights)

    • Third - once Garmin has found a better way of organising the "database" of exercises, allow users to submit new exercises to be made available to the whole community (or add to the description of an existing exercise). This would likely have to be a moderated process, otherwise the list would likely include a lot of senseless duplications and irrelevant variances
  • +1 for the custom names. Hopefully Garmin could implement it. What I'm missing today is just plain "Half squat".

    RustysTbone if I understood you right => choose "Add repeat" then input there e.g. [ 9 exercises + 2 min rest ] and multiply it with 3 :) It works at least in desktop browser.
  • Just realized that adding custom workouts is not easy as one needs to implement the pattern recognition for every movement so the watch understands when the move has been completed. First think the watch movement in time and space for 8 count bb's and then do the same for regular pushups. Now compare these and you get a picture of the task. :/
  • RustysTbone if I understood you right => choose "Add repeat" then input there e.g. [ 9 exercises + 2 min rest ] and multiply it with 3 :) It works at least in desktop browser.


    I don't see where you find "Add repeat" on the GC. You could think of this as a circuit workout. You do 6 exercises on 6 machines, take a 2 minute break, then do it again for 3 sets. That's what I am looking for.
  • Same request here!
    Would be great to "clone" a group of exercises because i do it n times.
    Now I have to input them manually... You could imagine how boring is to add a 6 exercises circuit for 3 to 6 times...
    I talk about "clone" because define a number of set is not enough.
    I could do the first round with some weight and raise the weight every round.
    Or do the first round with some reps and keep increasing the reps in the following rounds.
    But the exercises are still the same.
    So I would like to input the first round, select the entries and then clone them n times. And then edit the cloned rounds with the right weight/reps

    I'm also agree with the feature request of adding your own custom exercises name. Which remain personal... otherwise if the dictionary go global, it could became infinite! With also typos and languages variants...
  • It seems that I have seen a few people request this easy feature. Heck, they could do away with all of their workout names and just allow the person to put whatever name they want. Side Straddle Hop instead of Jumping Jacks, 8-count body builders over burpies ect. Regardless, Garmin users would like the option of naming the workouts what they want. Please bring us Custom Names!
  • +1 for this. As it is now, It's just a list of mostly gibberish. Workouts don't record a lot of useful data as compared to running or cycling, so let me at least use the watch as my shopping list of user-defined exercises.
  • RustysTbone if I understood you right => choose "Add repeat" then input there e.g. [ 9 exercises + 2 min rest ] and multiply it with 3 :) It works at least in desktop browser.



    I don't see where you find "Add repeat" on the GC. You could think of this as a circuit workout. You do 6 exercises on 6 machines, take a 2 minute break, then do it again for 3 sets. That's what I am looking for.


    On Desktop:
    On the right hand side of the "Custom Workout" screen, there is an "Add Repeat" button under the "Add Step" button.

    In App:
    It's at the bottom next to "Add a Step"
  • Just realized that adding custom workouts is not easy as one needs to implement the pattern recognition for every movement so the watch understands when the move has been completed. First think the watch movement in time and space for 8 count bb's and then do the same for regular pushups. Now compare these and you get a picture of the task. :/


    Most of the exercises in the list don't even get recognized by the watch. It's not necessary for the watch to understand the movement of every exercise. There's no way to tell the difference between a dumbbell curl and a barbell curl to the watch. It just recognizes "Curl" and you can modify it later.

    They really should allow you to add custom exercise names. It negatively impacts trying to track your workouts. I need to rely on a notebook with all my exercises because Garmin simply can't provide that functionality... an extremely *simple* function that every other workout program seems to provide.
  • I agree. The way it's done in Garmin it's useless. For example, I go to Body Pump sessions and each part of the program consists of a mix of exercises. Garmin Connect is totally inadequate for this. Why can't I just give names to each part myself??? (e.g. Warm up - Legs - Triceps - Biceps - ...- Cool down) It would be nice if I could put kind of "markers" in a session (by pressing the button for instance) so I know how long it did what. A bit like the leaps in running.

    Another totally ridiculous aspect of Carmin connect is that when you edit a training session you suddenly must change the DISTANCE so it's not zero even though it makes no sense for this particular training session.

    Another thing that annoys me is that it's not possible to switch off the automatic light of the screen. So during training the light again and again goes on just because my hand moves. I would have thought that the Garmin people could have guessed that during trainging my hand moves without me being interested in the time. - That's ridiculous. Why not let the user decide whether he wants this feature or not?

    I get the impression that Garmin Connect was made with to suit the needs of a select group. But now you should change it so it fits a very heterogenous group.