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Watches fall into two categories nowadays. The first is the simple, elegant timepiece. The second is the nuclear-powered digital affair that will tell you the time in Minsk while cooking you a pasta meal. 

The new thing for this year from the people at Timex is the clumsily titled Ironman Global Trainer. It’s sporty, yes, but is also not too hard to look at. While being packed with enough gadgetry to keep you amused for days, they have put some thought into making it look desirable too.

In terms of technical specifications, the list is pretty impressive. Having a built-in GPS unit, it can tell you exactly how far you’ve run, cycled or swum (it has a 50-metre water resistance as well). As well as distance, it will tell you your pace, split times and can remember up to 100 waypoints for the ultra-obsessive. It will happily talk to your chest strap to give you heart rate, and is fitted with ANT+ wireless technology. This means it will also record data from your bike sensors and aggregate your speed and cadence (pedalling power).

Of course, all this information is useless if it can’t be analyzed, so the Ironman has a USB port by which all the data may be downloaded to your computer for analysis. Plugging it in will also charge it, so you won’t run out of juice in the middle of a marathon.
How sexy is this device? Let’s put it this way, I don’t even like having to run for a bus, or cycle anywhere unless it’s all downhill, and I really want one of these. It’s so good, I may even take up running. Sadly, I’ll have to wait. The Ironman will be released to the US market early in the second quarter of 2010, with its appearance in Europe tentatively touted as being around October. No details of price have yet been released.