My Orangetheory Experience

So what am I doing now that I’ve hoped off the CrossFit train? Orangetheory!

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I have heard about Orangetheory quite a bit over the past few years and have always wanted to try a class, but just have never gotten around to it. Once I knew I was serious about switching up my fitness regimen I finally walked into my local Orangetheory to get the full low down.

The staff was very nice right off the bat. They walked me through the studio and gave a full explanation of how classes and membership work.

For those who are unfamiliar with Orangetheory it is an hour long class that combines cardio and strength exercises. They equip you with a heart rate monitor and have a screen set up in the studio so that you can see your current heart rate and what percentage of your heart rate you are working in. There are four zones: blue, green, orange and red. Blue is low, green is moderate, orange is high performance and red is all out. For the majority of the class you are encouraged to stay in the green and orange zones. Green is your fat burning zone and orange is your performance zone, where you’ll build up stamina.

After being walked through the studio I signed up for a class. When I came back for class I was given a heart monitor strap to borrow (you’ll eventually want to buy one) and my assigned heart monitor for the class. Since it was my first class I watched a quick video, which outlined what to expect in a class. Then I met one on one with the coach, who took me around and explained how to use the equipment and the flow of the class.

The class itself was awesome. For my first class we did what they call a “26/26”, where half the class spent 26 minutes on the treadmills and the other half of the class was doing strength exercises. Then we switched. I dreaded having to use the treadmill but we did intervals the entire time so I had no time to get bored. When it came to the strength exercises we did a variety of exercises using weights and our bodyweight. There was a good variation and we also hoped on the rowers in between sets to keep our heart rates up.

I loved being able to look up at the screen and see which zone I was in. It was a great motivator if I was lagging behind and a good reminder to take it easy if I was going too hard.

At the end of the workout the coach instructs you to check out your results on the screen and reminds you that ideally you should have spent the most time in the green and orange zones.

My results after my first class:

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I’ve taken two classes since and have burned more calories each time. The class is definitely a calorie scorcher!

What didn’t I like?

I get heart palpitations every now and then and even though they are infrequent I still like to inform people about it before working out at a new place. I noted on my intake form that I get heart palpitations and I was surprised that no one seemed to read over my form and inquire about them. It worried me a bit in case anything should ever happen to me.

The atmosphere isn’t the same as CrossFit. CrossFit truly feels like a family as soon as you walk in. Our coaches would have us say hi to each other before each class and reminded us to introduce ourselves to new people. I always loved this because we got to know each other easily and it further enhanced the family feel. At Orangetheory I did not meet one person officially and barely said a word to anyone. It was weird.

You have to sign up for classes ahead of time. I’m so used to just walking into a class when I know I can fit it in. My schedule can be hectic and all over the place and I’m not always sure if I can make a certain class time. And if you sign up for a class and aren’t able to cancel within a certain amount of hours you forfeit that class. Kind of sucks, but I can definitely see why they do it. So I have just been signing up for classes at the last minute.

Regardless, I decided to sign up for a membership. The price was comparable to what I was paying for CrossFit and overall I really liked the class. My goal right now is to try Orangetheory out for a few months and see how I like it and if I see positive results.

Have you tried Orangetheory?

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