The Fitbit Surge has been out for a while, I know. Google Fitbit Surge Review and mostly what comes up are reviews from tech sites. I thought I’d give my own review, as a diehard Fitbit lover!
I’ve been wearing a Fitbit of some kind for years now. I started with the Ultra, moved on to the One, and bit the bullet last year and bought a Surge. I ended up getting a Best Buy gift card from work and since I normally don’t shop there, I figured I would just buy a Surge. I had been wanting one anyway.
I should note up front that I do not wear my Surge every day. I wear it for workouts only. I am just so used to my One, and I think that the One is actually more accurate for the step counts. I’m also afraid of breaking the Surge screen or something stupid like that. I work at 7-11, so there are lots of things that I could possibly bang into. I just don’t like taking the risk I guess.
The big selling point of the Surge is that it has GPS in addition to the heart rate monitor. I already own a Garmin and a Polar heart rate monitor, but thought it would be pretty handy to have them both in one gadget. It definitely is! Since I’ve had it I really haven’t worn my Garmin much. It is an old style, big and bulky. While the Surge is also on the large side, it is considerably smaller than my old Garmin.
Obviously what most people are buying the Surge for is the GPS. I love tracking my runs and being able to just get out and go and not really have to plan a route ahead of time to make sure I get the right distance. I will say though that sometimes the GPS is off. I don’t know if there is just too much interference sometimes with traffic or weather but I have been out and knew that my time and distance weren’t matching up, only to get home and find that parts of my run were missing (mostly at the beginning of my run. I do wait to turn it on until I get outside, so I don’t know why this happens! I would say that 95% of the time I don’t experience GPS problems. I have also worn my Garmin and Surge together and they were both pretty close, like within .01 mile.
The heart rate monitor is another great feature. I haven’t really tested it out to see if it is getting exact numbers, but I figure it is close enough. I don’t need to be super technical about my workouts. I don’t even really look at my watch when I’m running! I like to look at the data after the fact and see how I’m doing. It tells me whether I’m in the fat burning, cardio, or peak zones. I use it to see how I’m doing with my runs. Am I working too hard? Or not hard enough? I can just look and see afterwards and try to adjust next time. The one pictured below was uphill for the first half, so I was working pretty hard.
You can also track workouts so they show up labeled in the Fitbit dashboard. There are options for run, hike, weights, elliptical, spinning, and yoga. You just pick the one you want, start the timer, and go. That makes it really easy to see the different workouts in your dashboard to analyze and compare.
While I love Fitbit, there are some things about the Surge I don’t like. I feel like the step count is less accurate than the One. I think being on the wrist just doesn’t track the same. I have also had issues with the battery. Sometimes I leave it around and after only using for one or two runs it doesn’t have any charge at all. I usually leave it plugged in and charging now so that doesn’t happen to me. That is also one of the reasons I don’t wear it all day. I wish there were a medium size. The small would have been too small for me, but the large is almost too big. The price was pretty steep too! But I didn’t end up paying full price.
I think thats about it! Like I said, I love Fitbit. The products are great and the customer service is pretty great too. They have replaced 2 Ones for me and they certainly didn’t have to. If you are looking for an alternative to Garmin or other GPS sport watch, or just looking to try out a fitness tracker I say go with Fitbit. They’ve been doing it longer than most and they do it pretty well.