As simple as running and walking look, they’re the best exercises to get your body moving all the time. To be fair, you already know their benefits. You lose weight, you keep in shape, and you hardly fall sick.
The problem is, not all of us have the motivation to wake up every morning for workout or spare some time for exercise after work. But with the help of the best Fitbit for running and walking, you can get the motivation and push to start working out and be very consistent in the exercises.
Before we look at the Fitbits, it’s important to remember that they don’t just include multiple exercise modes. They also have additional features that extend their performance. From tracking steps and counting calories to monitoring heart rate and quality of sleep, there’s very little these fitness trackers can’t do.
So in this guide, we’ll look at the Fitbit models that you can use to tracking running, walking, and more.
Let’s get to it.
Best Fitbit to Track Walks and Runs
1. Fitbit Flex 2
The Flex 2 tops our list of the best Fitbit for running and walking, mostly because it looks more fashionable than the Charge 2. It’s an upgrade of the original Fitbit Flex, about 30% smaller and lighter than some fitness trackers out there.
Waterproof to a depth as huge as 5 0 meters, Flex 2 is one of the few fitness trackers that can stand up to the deepest pool in the world. For swimming, it includes a swim sensor built-in to track laps and yards. And you can check the app’s dashboard if you want to analyze your swimming metrics.
As a multi-sport fitness tracker, this one even helps in biking and weightlifting. It counts steps walked, calories burned, and stairs climbed.
Then there’s the Reminder to Move. For the people just starting to get serious about physical fitness, staying on the move all the time may be the biggest challenge. But with the Reminder to Move feature, every Flex 2 user can get the motivation to get off the couch, get on the move, and develop an active and healthy lifestyle.
Flex 2 doesn’t just remind you that it’s time to move. It even tells you how many steps to feed it with in not more than an hour. The challenge is to finish 250 steps in 60 minutes, but you can definitely do more than that.
- A waterproof Fitbit that you can use to track swimming activities
- Data collected is more often accurate, so you can confidently use them to set fitness goals
- Smaller and lightweight, about 30% reduction in weight compared to the original model
- Feel free to wear it on your wrist or you can use it as a pedant
- Fitbit Flex 2 has a poor battery life, only three days runtime
- Somewhat expensive, not ideal for men and women on (tight) budget
- Doesn’t have a screen, you can only use it alongside the mobile app
2. Fitbit Charge 3
Fitbit Charge 3 isn’t exactly a full upgrade of the Charge 2. If you compare the two, you will notice only a few tweaks, which makes the latest model more functional. To begin with, Charge 3 has a bigger, OLED monochrome display with an improved resolution and promising content clarity.
Charge 3 sports an aluminum build, which makes it at least 20% lighter than the previous model. And the recessed navigation button on the left gives it a more balanced look that we haven’t seen on Inspire HR. Thanks to the touch sensitive and very responsive display, navigating between screens is easy and straightforward.
Fitbit goes as far as to tweak Charge 3’s notification, this time allowing you to get call alerts and read full text messages. Although Fitbit promised to add the ability to answer calls through the device, they haven’t given us an update on this feature since the introduction of Charge 3.
As a fitness and activity tracker, Fitbit Charge 3 has proven quite effective in counting steps from walking and running, smart workout tracking, and guided breathing. The Pure Pulse, a 24/7 heart rate monitor, lets you count calories burned and optimize your workout so you can reach your fitness goals.
It includes an SPO2 sensor, which checks the amount of oxygen in your blood stream. This makes it easy for you to diagnose your health condition even before visiting your physician.
- It’s a waterproof Fitbit that you can use for swimming
- Has an SPO2 sensor and a 24/7 functional heart rate monitor
- You get NFC Payment system if you upgrade to Fitbit Charge 3 Special Edition
- Big screen size with a better resolution for content clarity
- Good battery life, you get a 7-day runtime on a single charge
- You can only juice up the battery with Fitbit’s proprietary charger
- It doesn’t include an on-board GPS system, so accurate distance tracking and route mapping is impossible
- Sometimes the touch functionality fails to work well
3. Fitbit Charge 2 Heart Rate Fitness Wristband
Charge 3 took the fitness tracker market by storm even before its debut. But the Fitbit Charge 2 is still one of the best option for those who need an activity tracker with premium features at a fair price.
Like Inspire HR and Versa Lite, this fitness wristband can monitor your pulse rate, show your heart rate zone, count steps taken, and evaluate the quality of your sleep. Also, it includes a Reminder to Move feature, which motivates you to stay active by logging more steps after every 60 minutes of idleness.
Fitbit Charge 2 doesn’t have a notification system as robust as that of Fitbit Charge 3. But at least you aren’t going to miss call, text, and calendar alerts. Tap and swipe the screen, view the notification, and stay up to date on what really matters.
Pure Pulse is Charge 2’s top premium feature, which not only helps in counting calories burned but also provides workout intensity insight so you can optimize your exercise routine, thanks to Simplified Heart Rate Zones. What’s more? Charge 2 includes Guided Breathing, which senses your heart rate then lets you personalize your breathing session.
Then there’s the sleep monitor, a feature that helps you understand your sleeping pattern via phases. While it’s not the most accurate feature in a Fitbit Charge 2 fitness watch, you can use the stats to know if you’re really getting enough sleep or otherwise.
- Smart in tracking, Charge 2 begins to work the moment it detects movement
- Includes Reminder to Move feature, which motivates you to exercise and stay healthy
- Five-day battery life, good enough runtime from a single charge
- Consistent in tracking, giving reliable walking and running stats most of the time
- Monitors sleep in different stages
- Heart rate monitor won’t be accurate all the time
- No onboard GPS included
- Basic notification system
4. Fitbit Versa Smartwatch
The Standard Versa is one of the top waterproof Fitbit for swimming. It also doubles as one of the top Fitbit smartwatches for running and walking.
Sporting a water-resistant rating of 5 ATM, just like the rest of the models in this guide, the Versa can stand up to water of any depth, so much so that it makes even a good option for scuba divers. Perfect for swimmers who would rather keep track of the workout stats in the pool, you can use this thing to track strokes and laps on the go.
Like the Versa Lite Edition, this standard model tracks all day activity and sleep. And it includes a continuous heart rate monitor, not to mention help with general fitness, which tracks steps, distance covered, stairs climbed, calories burned (thanks to the HR). Moreover, not only can you store and play your exercise music into a wireless headset with the device (about 300+ songs), it also features on-screen workouts that let you get the most out of your exercise routine, a built-in coaching system that provides effective workout assistance straight from your wrist.
Fitbit Versa Standard comes equipped with 15 exercise modes, all built-in to enable workout in a way you love. And even if you don’t necessarily take advantage of these modes and decide to go straight to working out instead, Versa includes a built-in SmartTrack that automatically detects and record the exercise for you.
- Store and play more than 300+ music files on this fitness smartwatch
- Generally a good performing fitness tracker, good for all day activity tracking
- Waterproof up to 50 meters deep and it’s good for tracking swimming laps
- Guided on-screen workouts included, get instant coaching on your wrist
- No onboard GPS system, though it works well with connected GPS
- This model doesn’t include Fitbit Pay for wrist-based payments
- Only four days battery life, which is the less we’ve seen on a Fitbit
5. Fitbit Ionic Watch
Fitbit’s first attempt to design a smartwatch started with the Ionic Watch. And while it didn’t really go that well per se, this model remained a robust fitness and activity tracker in its very foundation. Even with smart features, like NFC chips for making mobile payments, the Ionic still doesn’t come close to its competition, the Apple Watch Series.
Argument on smartwatch aside, the Ionic is one of the best fitness trackers for running and walking, with a water resistant level as deep as 50 meters. Its ability to track swimming, from laps to stroke styles, gives you the freedom to track swim metrics and compare your performance in the pool.
Ionic’s smart tracker is a beast at its best. It’s ability to detect workout after a few minutes, and then tracking it on the fly, means something. For people that love smart tracking, this saves you the time to set the workout manually. And if you’re the kind of person likely to forget things, the smart tracker is your lifesaver for certain. It even goes as far as pausing tracking when you stop working out. How cool is that?
And do you love listening to music when working out? Great! The Ionic Watch lets you store up to 300 of your favorite workout tracks in its built-in memory. Compatible with many Bluetooth headsets, this watch you can use to listen to your favorite jam when you need to the most.
Combined with the heart rate training zone, you can take advantage of the heart rate monitor to optimize your workout intensity, set new exercise goals, and work towards achieving them. Plus, you’ll love this waterproof Fitbit because of its ability to monitor your resting heart rate, sleep, and cardio fitness levels.
- Includes a built-in GPS for distance tracking and route mapping
- Deigned for swimming, track stroke styles and laps in the pool
- Waterproof up to 50 meters deep, even a scuba diver can get the most out of this
- Includes unique watch faces to customize display depending on your preference or occasion
- Heart rate monitor doesn’t work when swimming as water tends to interfere with HR sensor
- Poor battery life on GPS mode and with notifications on
- Design isn’t nearly as intuitive and it isn’t the most lightweight Fitbit device
Wrapping this Up
It’s important to remember that these Fitbits can do more than just track running and walking. Each model features multiple sports modes, which extends their performance beyond the obvious.
For example, the Ionic model’s sports model also includes additional workouts like swimming and cycling. Plus, it includes a sleep monitor that checks the quality of your sleep. As such, it’s a sports model that fit’s those who’re looking for an all-day activity tracker for the price point.
The key thing here is that these fitness trackers are versatile. So you can use them beyond the running and walking scope.