It's always a good thing to have around in case your original HD refuses to boot for some reason.One thing I will mention, I did not create the recovery stick or put it on the External 1 TB Drive you mentioned. When I first started Macrium, I received a window with the title Rescue Media, it said important, you have not created Rescue Media to enable system recovery of your PC. Do you want to create Rescue Media now? I chose the No option as the procedure in the link above had no mention to it, probably not a good choice.
I'd also recommend to have Macrium install a bootmenu entry so it can load its recovery environment (actually a previous version of MS WinPe but you can easily replace that with the latest version should you feel inclined to)
Topgun's method works fine.
Macrium Reflect is a great tool allowing for several ways to actually skin that cat. It's also pretty intuitive to use and blazing fast.
Throughputs well over a Gig/s are no exception.
It does create a xml file that is saved in a subfolder of your "documents" folder but it doesn't require that to do a restore.