Recently, I bought myself a shiny new Fitbit Flex 2.
At first, I really wanted one of fitness tracking rings as I thought a Fitbit might look a bit garish, but then I realised a big chrome ring wouldn’t be much better.
I then looked for the cheapest possible Fitbit as I am a fat cheapskate (at times), despite running a luxury lifestyle blog.
It was then I came across the subject of this review – the Flex 2.
Let me just get this one out there, I’m not being paid or gifted to say anything here. Even if I was I’d still give my honest opinion obviously BUT I’m probably going to gush a bit about this so I just had to clear the air first.
Enough talk anyway – let’s…erm, talk some more!
Fitbit Flex 2: What is it?
The Fitbit Flex 2 is the entry level Fitbit. It is the cheapest model you can buy. It is the runt of the litter. It is the ginger stepchild. It is Rudolf before the other reindeers realised he was packing nasal heat.
You get the idea.
It is a fitness tracker first and foremost. No frills.
I picked mine up new for £50 off eBay and I really don’t understand why they are selling so cheap, this thing slaps.
What can it do?
It doesn’t even tell the time for God’s sake!
But dya know what it does do? Everything you need it to.
I was desperate to see how many steps I did in a day – desperate I tell you! This was the primary reason I got the Flex 2. It is an accurate step counter. I didn’t want to have to carry my phone with me at all times to track steps so this was a nice compromise.
It’s also handy for the phone haters as it stores 5 days worth of data for you before you need to sync it with your blower.
There’s actually a bucket load of features that the Flex 2 is packing but the main ones that you’ll probably be interested are as follows;
- Step tracking
- Sleep tracking
- Activity minutes & type
- Daily calorie burn
- Distance travelled
It also lets you set silent alarms which is great if you want a slightly less calamitous wake up call than your phone or an alarm clock.
I find this a great way to wake up without having to look at my phone when I’m travelling. Usually I’ll use an analogue alarm but it’s much harder when you’re not at home so this has actually been a bit of a hidden gem amongst the feature set.
Things are about to get a lil’ gushy people. You have been warned.
The biggest thing for me was that the Fitbit Flex 2 completely changed the way I viewed physical activity – steps at least.
I love getting active but getting my 10,000 steps in used to be a bit of a chore. Working from home means I have become a bit of a lazy oaf – I often get less than 3,000 steps a day.
Seeing my ‘score’ on the Fitbit app really motivated me to get out and about to try and beat yesterday’s totals. If I was about an hour or so away from going to bed and had 1,000 steps left to go, I’d just start walking round the garden or up and down the stairs.
This all sounds a little bit Patrick Bateman I know but you’ll see for yourself, gamifying your activity really becomes addicting.
It actually looks cool
On the aesthetic side of things, this thing actually looks the business, which is hard for something as frumpy as a fitness tracker to pull off.
The fact that it is so sleek due to having no clock or any frills makes it seamless on your wrist and just looks like a snazzy little bracelet. If you want to go one step further, you can actually get a pendant for your Flex 2 which sits under (or over) your top.
If you’re concerned about looking a bit too try-hard this is the option you might want to take but I think it’s a bit unnecessary personally.
Great battery life
According to Fitbit, the Flex 2 can last up to 5 days on a single charge. I find that this is pretty much the case, just make sure you don’t have ‘all day sync’ activated and you’ll be fine.
I tend to top up the charge every couple of days while I’m sat down working as that way I won’t miss any significant activity plus I can track my sleep every night as opposed to charging it overnight and skewing the data for the week.
This is a huge bonus and means that all you swimming buffs can go ham.
Being waterproof is such a bonus for the Flex 2. It means it can withstand a lot when it comes to water, sweat and sport. All you have to do is wipe it down every so often and dry it after you’ve been swimming or taken a bath/shower – hardly a mammoth task.
The Fitbit app itself is really easy to navigate, customise and keep up to date with. The first time you set up the device, you’ll be taken on your own little virtual guide which sets you up perfectly for a lifetime of life tracking.
Email notifications when battery is low
You can choose to have this on or off but I like getting an email notification through when my battery is low as it helps me to remember to charge the bloody thing.
Otherwise, I’d be forgetting all the time and lose days worth of data because I’m a big stinkin’ eejit.
It’s a handy little tool but it isn’t necessary so I’ll leave this one up to you.
Holds data for ages
The Fitbit Flex 2 can hold up to 5 days of data before you need to sync it with your phone. Most of us will be syncing every few hours to keep up to date with every single step of the day but it’s a very handy tool to have just in case.
If you and your family have Fitbits, you can set up challenges for the week. This sounds extremely beige but it’s actually pretty fun. Having even just a bit of competition can spur you on to do an extra thousand steps, which all count towards becoming a fitter you.
They do kid’s ones too, so it can be a fun way to get your sprog into keeping fit.
I’m not gonna lie gang, there isn’t many negatives. After a month or so of testing, I can only think of a couple of minus points.
Doesn’t track weights sessions
This was the main gripe I had the Flex 2. It bugged me that my weights sessions weren’t picked up by the activity tracker.
I go to the gym 5 times a week-ish, which is a decent chunk of activity for the day. By not tracking this calorie burn or activity, the Fitbit isn’t really giving you the full picture of your physical performance for the day.
You set daily goals for your fitness when setting up the Fitbit – be that 10,000 steps, 30 minutes of exercise – whatever.
The Flex 2 only records sports, swimming, aerobic and anaerobic activity, which means that those doing weights may think they’ve barely burned any calories or hit their activity quota when in fact, they’ve probably smashed through it.
To combat this, I just mentally made a note of this and adjusted my diet accordingly. Just don’t got overboard with your estimations and start downing coke and Doritos you big heffer.
Maybe something Fitbit can do to combat this would be to add in a section to log workouts performed like MyFitnessPal does. Or, maybe they have got this capability already but I was just too stupid to find it – who knows?
This didn’t bother me as it helps the design to stay sleek AF but I have seen that a decent chunk of people thought this lack of clock was a negative.
The Fitbit Alta (Affiliate link) is basically the same but with a clock and doesn’t cost much more so just go for that if you’re gonna get your knickers in a twist about keeping track of this manmade concept.
I’d give this little fella a solid 9/10. I don’t think anything deserves a 10/10 but the Fitbit Flex 2 comes close.
My experience with the Flex 2 has really changed my perception of fitness trackers from something your dad buys after the divorce to something that can genuinely improve your fitness pursuits.
With that in mind, I’m really looking forward to upgrading in the next year or so to a slightly more advanced one – probably the Fitbit Versa (Affiliate link).
If you like the sound of the Fitbit Flex 2 then you can pick one up here (Affiliate link…again).