• Fitbit Charge 2

    Fitbit Charge 2
    By Kyle “Rumble” Bousquet

    Can a fitness appliance help a gamer with a healthier lifestyle? Does the Charge 2 fit that bill? Well I test it out to find out.

    Departure From the Norm

    This review is a departure from the normal gaming hardware and software reviews you are used to. This is both a review, but also a commentary or editorial about my journey. It's not going to be everyone's cup of tea, but that's ok.

    Not long ago I was a 350lbs gamer with a lot of health issues (most from my weight). For years doctors told me I needed to lose weight to help either joint problems I had or overall health issues (lots of upper respiratory infections). My weight was constantly blamed for bad health.

    As a gamer I found myself spending hours upon hours upon hours sitting at my computer and gaming until the wee hours of the morning. Drinking 8 Dr.Peppers a night and munching down bags of chips or snack cakes. I was living a sedentary lifestyle and hated looking in the mirror every day.

    The day came when I said enough was enough. I gave up the sugar soda, stopped eating outside of meals unless it was an apple or mandarin oranges (oh I loves the mandarin orange) and started walking the eventually joining a gym (hey there Planet Fitness, much love to you guys). So over almost three years I lost 130lbs. I went from a size 52 inch waist back down to a respectable 38 inch waist. Went from XXL clothing into XL. And I felt better.
    One thing I didn't change was gaming. I still sat around at night and just played Calm of Duty or Battlefield or World of Warcraft. I really wanted to change that and you'd think with the discipline I exercised in getting down to a healthier weight I would have been able to change my habits in gaming.

    It turns out I just needed the right partner. Fitbit’s Charge 2 was everything I didn't know I always needed. The Charge 2 is a fitness band with heartbeat monitor. It does so much more than that though. If you use the corresponding app (for iPhone, Android, Windows or Mac) you can track water consumed, food eaten, steps, stairs, calories burned and workouts. The more of these tools I utilized the better my health got. But the real story here is it helped me not sit at my computer all the time.

    New T skins - whatcha think??-fitbit-charge-2-mobile-png

    I think most people want to do the right thing in life but also for their health. I always felt bad sitting at the computer all night. I just needed a nudge. The Charge 2 fits the bill. If I sit for too long it vibrates and tells me I should get moving. Sure at first I liked to ignore it some of the time. The more I got up and got active though the easier it was.

    New T skins - whatcha think??-l_10151710_006-mobile-jpg

    As a gamer you may say “Hey, what if you're in the middle of a map and have your groove on killing everything that moves?” Yes that is a deterrent. But I just made up my mind at the end of that map the health of my body was more important than sitting there for another map. The gentle nudges from the Charge 2 helped me train myself to not sit at my computer for 6 hours straight. It's not healthy.

    New T skins - whatcha think??-fitbit_app_1472484168600-mobile-jpeg

    So as a gamer does the Fitbit Charge 2 help you becoming healthier? Not by itself no. Like any exercise tool you have to be motivated and you have to be willing to change bad habits.

    The battery on the Charge 2 lasted me an average or 4-5 days even with syncing to my phone enabled. It charged quickly (3 hours) and I found doing that in the mornings was the best time donut didn't miss a lot of my steps or workouts. I liked the look of the Fitbit Charge 2 a lot. I have the Gunmetal edition which sets you back an extra $20-$25 but I really liked its look. I will say that I quickly found even better bands though on Amazon. I bought a much dressier band for going out and a sturdier, thicker band for going to the gym. I really loved the ease of switching bands. You just switch by pushing 2 releases on the underside and slide off the band. Putting a new band on is just the reverse, slide on the band and the clips close.

    The Fitbit Charge 2 will set you back between $150 and $170 MSRP, and for what you get I think it's a good buy. I’m sure I could find a way to push on without a fitness band, but as long as I am going to have one I really like the Charge 2. If you game and want a little help in making your life a little more mobile I highly recommend it.

    Performance: 8
    Appearance: 9
    Quality of Construction: 7
    Tech Features: 10
    Overall: 8.75

    I don't have any fitness bands to compare the Fitbit Charge 2 to, but apart from the default band being a little light and flimsy for my taste it's a pretty nice product that does exactly what I needed it to.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Fitbit Charge 2 started by Rumble View original post