I’ve seen the orange glow coming from this studio several times in passing, but I wasn’t quite sure what it was all about.
Orange isn’t exactly my favorite color, but the light just kept drawing me in.
This week I finally got a chance to try it! Orangetheory Fitness
What to Expect at Your First Class
When you attend your first class you are given a brief explanation about what your target heart rate goals are. They are all color-coded, with one target goal being orange of course. However, they told me I actually want to be in the green target range most of the time. Hmmm. I found it odd that it is called OrangeTheory when I should stay within the green range most of the time. Maybe it was just because it was my first time.
After the tutorial (which lasted about 3 minutes) I strapped on a heart rate monitor and was introduced to my trainer, Stephanie. She told us to jump on the water rowers (umm never been on one of those before either) and start warming up. The class was pretty full, with about 5 people lined up on the treadmills and 5-6 on the rowers.
On the opposite side of the room, there is a weight area with dumbbells, benches, mats, and TRX trainers.
The session that I went to was called a “roller coaster class”. This means that we did back and forth intervals of cardio work on the treadmills and strength work “on the floor”. We did 3 rounds of this, with variations in the exercises changing with each round. According to a friend I knew in the class, in a typical class you spend half the time “on the floor” and half the time on the treadmills. I’ve obviously never tried it that way but I think I would prefer the roller coaster class anyways.
On the treadmills there is a big screen TV above you that shows you each person’s heart rate zone. Like I said before, all the zones are color-coded, from blue to green to orange to red. For most of the workout you want to try to keep your heart rate in the green zone (base). When the trainer tells you to go to “push” mode, you want to try to get your heart rate into the orange zone. I guess this is why it’s called Orangetheory because they are trying to “push” yourself into the orange zone.
At the end of the session you are sent an email “training report” to show you your stats for the session. It would be cool to monitor your progress after several sessions! Here is the training report of my session:
When trying to reach your zones, your trainer will tell you where to set the speed based on your current fitness level of “walker, jogger, or runner”.
For about 30 seconds to 1 minute of each cardio round, you will enter the “all out” phase, where you try to get your heart rate into the red zone. I was so glad it was only short-lived because it was tough! I was sprinting as fast as a could! It felt good to get to the red though!
During the strength work, we did exercises like chest presses, bicep curls with a step-up, weighted tricep dips, oblique twists with weights, and planks. I got to use the TRX bands once when we did Y deltoid flys.
I loved having a tangible target to reach for by monitoring my heart rate zone. Sometimes I find it hard to push myself out of my comfort zone when I’m working out, and this definitely works!
Being able to see everyone else’s HR zones on the screen spoke to my competitive side (especially because I was competing with my husband). When the trainer told me I should be in the orange zone, I made sure to get there! It was a big motivator! Make sure to take someone with you that you like to compete with (all in fun).
I liked the mix between cardio and strength. Even though the strength training part of the circuit doesn’t involve the heart rate monitoring, I think I would have gotten very bored (and tired) if it was all cardio.
The workout was an hour. I don’t usually work out for an hour so I found myself getting a little antsy by the end. 30-45 minutes is more my style
The room stays orange the whole time. I wish the lights in the rooms changed colors to match the “zone” you were pushing towards, but I guess they need to stick with the orange theme.
I didn’t know it at the time, but the OrangeTheory studio I went to was the second one EVER in the nation. Pretty cool!!
I would definitely go again but I don’t think I would make it my regular workout. I still prefer my home workouts!
Have you ever tried Orangetheory?
What new workout have you tried recently?