Produced in partnership with G Shock.
When designing a GBDH1000, G-SHOCK had one goal in mind: to create a performance-ready watch that’s tough enough to handle workouts in the most extreme conditions. This makes it a perfect fit for firefighters Mike Calderwood, head of the Carlsbad Fire Department in Southern California. From fighting forest fires in steep hilly terrain to rescuing people from burning buildings, he and his team put their bodies on the line with every 911 call.Every day brings a new challenge with him, and in order to respond to those challenges, these frontline first responders need high training. Intensity – tracking fitness up to the task level.
It’s a physically demanding job, says Calderwood. Men’s magazine. “You need to make sure your body is ready to handle this.”
Carlsbad’s firefighting division takes fitness very seriously, and Calderwood recently put the GBDH1000 through its paces on the job – a unique test of this powerful training hour. From the fire room to the gym, Calderwood showed us what it means to get in shape as a firefighting.
First and foremost, it’s not just about huge, he explains. Instead, it focuses on building muscle memory so that it can function properly in extreme conditions. Firefighters must be able to handle heavy equipment, such as ladders and hoses, while wearing cumbersome protective equipment and navigating in high-pressure scenarios: a smoke-filled building or a burning and unstable slope.
“As a firefighter, you depend on that muscle memory to perform your skills at the highest level,” Calderwood says.
So how did that muscle memory develop? Extremely rigorous and focused training. Last year, Calderwood partnered with Nakawa, A local physiotherapy company, to develop a functional fitness system specifically designed for firefighting. By analyzing the different movements that firefighters would have to perform – carrying an injured person down stairs, for example – they developed exercises to help Calderwood and his team prepare for their job requirements.
A typical exercise might include stretching exercises, cardio training, and movements such as pushing a heavy sled to simulate carrying a hose or pressing a bell that simulates pulling a ladder from a truck. With each session in the gym, the goal is to increase firefighters’ flexibility, endurance, and strength.
“All of those different exercises become directly related to something you’re doing on the job,” says Calderwood.
This is exactly the type of fitness that the GBDH1000 is designed for. With a long list of activity tracking and robust building features, it provides unparalleled visibility into your workouts – even when they take you into harsh environments. The watch comes equipped with five sensors, including independent GPS, a 3-axis accelerometer and an optical heart rate monitor. This last feature is especially important for someone like Calderwood, who tracks his heart rate to help gauge his endurance and effort.
“I measure it all,” he says. “It’s really nice to see your progress.”
GPS and accelerometer work together to provide accurate tracking when workouts bring you running outside, while the heart rate monitor is suitable for all types of training. When you work during a workout, it allows the watch to display your current and target heart rates and calculate V02 max, a key measure of cardiorespiratory fitness. And with its Bluetooth connection, the GBDH1000 can display notifications, emails, and calls, so you will always be on the lookout.
The GBDH1000 really shines with G-SHOCK’s Move app, and together they put a massive amount of fitness data at your fingertips. The design of the widget is easy to customize to your preference, and relies on powerful watch sensors to generate detailed performance analyzes, such as heart rate zones and calories burned. For runners, color-coded maps show exactly where it increased intensity (and where it left off work – these sensors don’t lie).
Based on this data, Move can show progress over time, create custom fitness plans, and even calculate whether you need to rest or push hard to achieve your goals. It’s like having a personal trainer right on your wrist.
Of course, even the smartest activity trackers are useless if they can’t stand the rigors of daily wear. This is especially true for firefighters, who are taking wear to a whole new level. For Calderwood, anything he brings along on the job should be very durable.
“They have to be tough and rugged, and able to withstand the harshest environments,” he says.
This is a familiar territory for G-SHOCK, which has a long history of making adventure-ready watches. GBDH1000 is no exception. It’s shockproof and water resistant up to 200 meters, and the case is uniquely designed to protect the watch face’s glass from impacts. And thanks to the resin-coated metal frame and non-slip magnifying buttons, it is easy to operate whether you are working in a final race or training with firefighter gear.
The GBDH1000 is a great companion for any athlete, but more so for a frontline like Calderwood. For him, fitness is a job requirement – a lesson he learned the hard way. Before his functional fitness program started in his department, he was suffering from chronic knee injury and back pain.
“It hurts if you get out of bed in the morning,” he says. “While talking to my wife and looking at my children, I realized that I have a long time to live, and I want to be healthy.”
So he started working with a coach, and after a few months, he started seeing remarkable results.
“I felt ten years younger.”
Calderwood also realized that he was not alone: Many firefighters deal with injuries and chronic health problems as a result of their work. Targeted training offered a way to help the men and women in its management better prepare their bodies for the job. From that insight, his functional fitness program was born. A year later, the benefits go beyond reducing injuries and increasing performance.
“It’s another way to build that camaraderie,” he says. “It can help drive the desire to be the best firefighter you can be.”
Although firefighter training is very specific, GBDH1000 reflects the boldness and perseverance it takes to achieve your goals, whatever they may be. Plus, it’s designed to help you every step of the way.
So what are you waiting for? Get your watch And chasing her.
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