Good day (or evening) to all of my fellow apprentices. First things first, hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas time and New Years with your loved ones this past year. Today I’m going to share with you my thoughts on one of the most beloved and (at times) frustrating activity tracker/fitness monitors.
Let’s take a closer look at the Fitbit 2 Charge. In a relatively short time, fitness trackers have come a long, long way. And Fitbit is the biggest name in the industry, having been around since the early days of trackers. The Charge 2 is one of the one of Fitbit’s more recent models – though it’s been out for a while now – and its become hugely popular among buyers.
- 1 Powerful Technology You Wear on Your Wrist
- 2 Helps You Get A Better Night’s Sleep
- 3 Automatic Capability Saves Time and Hassle
- 4 Good Options and Value
- 5 Larger Screen Delivers More Information At A Glance
- 6 How Good Is The Fit?
- 7 It’s Popular – But Not the Newest Fitbit
- 8 How It Works
- 9 The App Is A Standout
- 10 Recharges Fast – Every 4-5 Days
- 11 Who Is This Fitness Tracker For?
- 12 What Customers Most Like
- 13 What Buyers Didn’t Like
- 14 The Verdict
Powerful Technology You Wear on Your Wrist
Fitbit’s Charge two has continuous and automatic heart rate tracking and monitoring. It helps you maximize the value you get from workouts by identifying the heart rate zone (fat burning, cardio, and peak) you’re in as you.
It helps you get a clearer understanding of your current fitness level by providing an instant snapshot whenever you connected to the GPS on your smart-phone. So you get real-time stats on things like distance traveled, pace established, calories burned, steps walked, and floors climbed.
And in testing, it provided fairly accurate readings of activity throughout the day. So it’s an excellent way to see where you’re at from a fitness perspective at any point – and how you can improve this level over time.
When inactivity during your waking hours exceeds a certain set time, the tracker gently vibrates, reminding you to get up and get moving again. It also help you find moments of calm during your day with short guided breathing sessions, which is particularly helpful on those really stressful days.
The Charge 2 is compatible with IOS, Android and Windows devices (more than 200 of them have been tested to and pair perfectly).
Although it’s a stylish, watch-like device you wear on your wrist – the Charge II is so much more than just a watch. It tracks your movement and activity level – and it documents it all. It records your workouts, helping to optimize your physical activity for better overall conditioning.
Helps You Get A Better Night’s Sleep
As long as you’re wearing it, this Fitbit continues to track all your activity – including your sleep. Personally I have had issues with this feature and by no means have I been the only one. Visiting the Fitbit forums however, I was finally able to finally fix this issue with the company’s helpful suggestions.
By tracking your sleep patterns, you’ll gain personal insights that can only improve your sleep experience and your overall wellness, as a result.
Automatic Capability Saves Time and Hassle
Fitbit’s Charge 2 is capable of automatically tracking common ways to exercise like walking, running, lifting weights, and biking. It detects these movements quickly on autopilot – so you don’t have to stop and click through options just to find the start button.
This model also allows you to log your food intake and track the calories consumed, as well as those you’ve burned off in various activities that day. With the Charge 3, you also have access to a number of personalized video workouts provided by official Fitbit coaches. Some are free, while many more are available with a paid subscription.
Good Options and Value
If you’re new to fitness trackers, the Fitbit Charge two offers a ton of value in one small package. And if you’re upgrading from a previous Fitbit or other competing model, you’ll find that this Fitbit has a lot of fitness tracking options giving you immediate access to a greater variety of important fitness details.
Larger Screen Delivers More Information At A Glance
With the Charge 2 Fitbit, you also get a significantly larger screen, which makes it much more useful and functional. Now you don’t have all that clicking and scrolling required by some fitness trackers, just to locate the one specific detail you want. Many people find the larger screen helpful.
The screen itself features an OLED display. It’s also a touch-screen which is very convenient and easy to read. Like all touch devices, this one is easiest to use once you get used to it. But like a lot of touch devices, it does require an additional tap sometimes to get the selection you want.
How Good Is The Fit?
Sure the larger size screen is helpful in the data it delivers right on your wrist. But there’s a downside too in that it may be a little too big and cumbersome for those with smaller wrists.
As for how the Charge 2 fits and feels on the wrist, you may be surprised to learn that the standard straps provided are actually quite comfortable and an improvement over earlier versions. Fitbit has refined the strap design and improved on the materials used.
Replacement straps can be expensive. But it’s nice to know there are additional options available too.
Standard bands are now made out of a rubber-like substance and available in light blue, dark blue, black, or purple. There’s a deluxe option in lavender/rose gold or black/gunmetal. You can also get luxury straps made from real leather and available in light pink, indigo, and brown colors.
It’s Popular – But Not the Newest Fitbit
While the Fitbit Charge two is a popular recent release, it’s not the newest from the company. That distinction goes to the Fitbit Charge 3 – a tracker that boasts a refined design and is completely waterproof.
So it’s excellent to track swimming strokes, and you don’t have to worry about forgetting to take it off when you jump into the shower.
But if swimming isn’t part of your regular exercise – the Fitbit Charge 2 should be more than enough – and it will save you some cash over the latest version.
How It Works
There’s a button on the left-hand side of the screen of the tracker that can be used to skip through the various menu options such as time, steps, heart rate, and calories. To activate a certain function or feature, simply hold the button down.
Because it’s lightweight and comfortable, it’s much easier to wear the Charge 2 all day long, which isn’t the case with some of the other trackers we’ve tested. It’s important to note that this one is water resistant – not waterproof.
Therefore, it can probably withstand a little bit of sweat or some splashes of water here and there as you wash your hands in the sink. But you don’t want to expose it to any more moisture than you need to – just to be on the safe side.
If you need one that’s waterproof – go for the Charge 3. The guided breathing feature is quite useful in that it allows you to pause and take somebody and take some deep breaths which can be quite relaxing. You can also pause and resume workouts at any moment.
And the heart rate tracker is constantly monitoring your heart rate – without you needing to wear a chest strap. So it’s way more convenient.
Although the Fitbit Charge Two functions as a standalone fitness tracker, you’ll need to connect it to your smart phone via Bluetooth to get up-to-the-minute stats and notifications.
The App Is A Standout
One of the things it really makes the Fitbit fitness tracker standout is the app provided. It’s easy to setup and simple to use. That’s surprising, considering that it provides valuable in-depth details within the app. It’s your exact fitness stats broken down and dated daily, so you can see them at a glance.
This makes monitoring your progress quick and easy. And as your results improve, you’ll be motivated by this visual evidence to stick with the program. As a result, you’ll get fitter and you’ll look and feel better too – possibly better than you’ve felt in sometime.
Recharges Fast – Every 4-5 Days
Chances are you’ll become accustomed to using your Fitbit Charge II so often, that one of the challenges is finding a time to remove it from your wrist in order to recharge the device.
If you want to use it to track your sleep, it can be difficult to find the time to recharge. You’ll need to find the right opportunity and a time that makes sense for you. What I found worked well was to recharge during dinner prep and eating time.
In about two hours time, the battery should be fully recharged and ready to go.
If you’re eating healthy meals, there’s going to be at least some prep time involved. And having a slow-paced relaxing meal at the end of the day can be good to your health and emotional well-being. This should give you enough time to fully recharge your Fitbit.
You can probably stretch the time between charges – if you’re not using all the features including the heart rate monitor and the deep breathing reminders. Fitbit comes with its own proprietary charger. But it would be more useful and versatile if it excepted a standard micro USB charger.
That way, recharging would more universal and therefore, a little easier when you’re away from home.
Who Is This Fitness Tracker For?
Anyone interested in improving their overall level of activity and fitness can benefit from the Fitbit Charge 2. If you’re someone who wants to fairly accurately track their step count and add in monitor their degree of exercise periodically – this is a superb choice.
On the other hand, if you’re a serious athlete with a strict training protocol, the Fitbit Charge two is probably not the best option for you. I would recommend this fitness tracker instead.
What Customers Most Like
Display screen. The large visual display provides consistent tracking information at a glance. The information displayed is clear and the screen is easy-to-read, even in bright sunlight.
Heart rate monitor. You can quickly identify your cardio fitness level at any point.
Battery power. You should be able to go 4 or 5 days with a single battery charge.
Wristband changes. Interchangeable wristbands are comfortable to wear and quick to change.
Wide tracking capability. Multi activity automatic tracking makes it easy to record a wider range of physical activity.
Well made product. This model offer a quality build that’s superior to the original Fitbit Charge.
Instant access. The display turns on simply by rotating your wrist – although it doesn’t happen as intuitively as some buyers would like. But if you make an intentional movement- like purposefully patting your chest – it seems to activate with much better consistency than merely flipping your wrist over, like the manual states.
Messages. Incoming text scrolls across the screen which is pretty cool and allows you to monitor your communications at anytime. Unfortunately you cannot respond directly from the the device – you’ll need your smart phone for that.
Attractive design. It is a sleek elegant design with the look and feel of quality design and a comfort level that reflects that.
It’s therapeutic. The relaxed breathing function helps you take deep breaths when you need them the most. If you understand the positive power and effect deep breathing can have on your overall wellness and your ability to remain alert – you’ll love this feature.
What Buyers Didn’t Like
Messages don’t stay. The scrolling text moving across the screen can be a little annoying if you’re accustomed to seeing substantially more text in your messages. Also, when getting real time information directly on the screen of this Fitbit – these details are only there momentarily, before they disappear.
Screen scratches. The screen on this device seems to scratch quite easily.
No built-in GPS. For maximum usability, you’ll need to take your phone with you.
Vibration notification is weak. With this “weaker than it should be” notification option – you might not even notice and therefore sleep through an alarm.
There’s no doubt about it, this quality tracker will hold you accountable. It will track your steps calories burned, how active you are, the number of floors you climbed, and the miles you’ve traversed.
It can also monitor you as your sleeping, so you’ll discover – perhaps for the first time – what affect certain life changes such as nutrition and more exercise will have on the quality of your sleep.
The Fitbit Charge 3 will provide lots of information that will inevitably make you want to improve your health and wellness to a greater degree. Combined with the app, the Charge 3 does an admirable job of monitoring your activity as well as your caloric intake.
It can take some work on your part to input all the information. But if you’re willing to do that, the feedback you’ll receive can only help you attain a higher level of wellness.