By Becca Damron
Orange you glad you worked out today?
You've probably heard of Orangetheory Fitness by now, but in case you haven't, let’s first start with a proper definition. A class at Orangetheory Fitness (OTF) consists of a 60-minute workout combining treadmill running, indoor rowing work, and weight room/resistance blocks. Orange Theory is based on the philosophy of effectively obtaining the maximum benefit of Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (EPOC).
Their idea is to stay within a certain heart-rate (HR) zone, known as the Orange Zone, for a certain amount of time so that it will create optimum calorie burn long after you finish your workout.
Now, my definition: a butt-kicking, sweat-provoking, fat-burning, heart-pounding workout that gets you in serious shape, or in my case, helps justify all the great food I eat all around town.
I absolutely loved my experience, so here are my 5 big reasons why you need to check out Orangetheory Fitness in South End:
Reason 1: Free!
The first class is free. And I don’t mean free where you have to go for a one-hour, pre-workout consultation and then stick around afterwards so they can sell you on the workout and diet plan kind of free.
I mean the no commitment, non-threatening, no pressure to join kind of free. There’s nothing to lose in trying OTF except weight! If you find it’s not for you after the first class, you can walk away with no obligation to return…but I bet you won’t.
Reason 2: Cherie
When I arrived to my first, free 5am workout, I was greeted by smiles and conversation from Cherie at the front desk. She was so bright and bubbly (even that early in the morning) and willing to answer any and all of my questions. She made it easy to transition into a new workout environment, which let’s all be honest, is not the most comfortable situation.
And she wasn’t only that way to get you to commit to the workout, she was like that with everyone, every morning, and every morning since. When you see Cherie, get her to flex for you because there’s definitely some snow on those bicep peaks!
Reason 3: Competitive, but not in the way that you’d think
Everyone who takes the class is equipped with a heart rate monitor. The idea is to stay within a certain HR range specific to the instructor’s guidance throughout the workout, ideally staying within the Orange range as much as possible. You keep up with your progress via a television monitor that displays everyone’s name, HR, point count, and calories burned.
You’d think that being able to see everyone’s progress and current standings would make for an intense, competitive atmosphere. Wrong! You’re too busy trying not to be a casualty of the “all out” pace of the treadmill, or you're attempting to pump out one more round in the weight room to even pay attention to anyone else.
Though having the information displayed makes you competitive, it makes you competitive with yourself. It also keeps you accountable to the amount of effort you are putting into your workout – so no whining or faking this one (you know who you are).
I found that this environment has really helped me push myself further than I ever have because it is real time competition with yourself without the pressure of a competitive environment.
Reason 4: It’s for everyone
When I first heard about OTF, I thought it was a workout mainly for girls. Nope! It is for EVERYONE. I have seen men and women who are there for different reasons, and from all ages and varying levels of fitness/athleticism.
You don’t have to be a runner, a rower, or a meat head/gym rat. It’s also a great workout to do with a partner, whether that’d be a spouse, a friend, or your special friend - you also know who you are. ;)
The aspect that I’ve appreciated most about my time at OTF is that it is a very supportive environment for all levels. I walked in as a beginner but never once felt inadequate or that there was a huge learning curve.
You get what you put into the workout, and the instruction is easy to absorb and to execute. Which leads me to my next reason….
Reason 5: The instructors
I’m more of a morning workout kind of girl, so I can only speak on the instructors that I had for the morning classes. I usually showed up to either the angelic and enthusiastic face of Rose or the smiling and passionate face of Jon. They are amazing. You can tell that they are very committed to their work, extremely upbeat, incredibly positive, and very inclusive.
They give attention to everyone in the class and seem to make sure to acknowledge hard work when they see it.
The instruction is often uncomplicated, but if at any point you find yourself struggling and in need of personal instruction, they are more than happy to assist. And I’m not sure how they manage to keep up with two separate groups at the same time!
They definitely keep me coming back, and I hope to see you there soon!
Becca Damron | @feedmecharlotte
Food enthusiast, wine drinker, and connoisseur of the finer things in life.
"Until the next bite!"