The New Year is upon us, which means gyms and fitness studios across the country are expectantly gearing up for an influx of resolution-setters and go-getters. For the past few years, I’ve resolved to lose a few pounds, but I always seem to fall a little bit short. I get bored. I get busy. Life stuff happens, and I forget about my resolutions by April. So in 2017, I tried out something new: an Orangetheory workout. And today, I’m going to give you a rundown of why you should give Orangetheory a chance to whip you into the best shape of your life in 2018.
ORANGETHEORY WORKOUT EXAMPLE | 7 REVIEWS FROM REAL WOMEN
Below, you’ll find a granular breakdown of an Orangetheory workout class, seven reviews from real women who work out at Orangetheory fitness, and an FAQ for any outstanding questions.
First, I want to break down an Orangetheory workout class for you:
The class I attended today was split in to four blocks. I started on the treadmill, then moved to the weight room, then back to the treadmill, and then back to the weight room for the final block.
While on the treadmill, I, along with one half of the class, was asked to run at a “push pace,” which is considered an uncomfortable speed intended to jack your heart rate up, at a 2% incline for 90 seconds. Then, for 45 seconds, we were instructed to slow down to our “base pace,” which is a speed that’s challenging but can be held for 20-30 minutes without stopping. At a base pace, the goal is to catch your breath without fully recovering. I spent my 90-second push pace at a speed of 6 and my base pace at a 5.
We did this alternation, a 90-second push pace followed by a 45-second base pace, four times—each time increasing the incline by 1%. So by the fourth push pace, we were at a 5% incline. Once we finished the 90-second push pace and 45-second base pace at a 5% incline, we had one more burst to complete before moving to the second block, which was in the weight room. At a 5% incline, we were instructed to run at our push pace for one minute, followed by a 30-second “all out” pace. The all out pace is exactly what it sounds like. You’re going as fast and as hard as you can for 30 seconds. Then, we walked for about 45 seconds before moving on to the second block in the weight room.
It’s important to note that you do not have to run while on the treadmill. There are three designations on the treadmill depending on your preferences and fitness level—walker, jogger, and runner. Walkers are always on a much higher incline than joggers/runners, so you’re still getting some killer cardio in—even if you’re walking. There is also a bike and strider for those with injuries or joint problems. There’s something for everyone!
Once I finished the first block on the treadmill, I moved on to the weight room. During this block, there were four exercises (two sets of each) to complete, all of which were focused on arms and core. The instructor always demonstrates each exercise and then tells the class approximately how much weight to use (depending on if you’re a man or woman), how many reps to do, and how many sets to complete. There are also television screens in the room to demonstrate how to do each exercise so you won’t get lost.
In the weight room, you will find free weights, medicine balls, suspension straps, ab dollies, steps, Bosu balls, and beyond. Today, we used a step, free weights, suspension straps, and medicine balls—but every day is different, so you never know what you’ll be working on, on any given day.
While I was completing the four exercises (two sets of each) in the weight area, the group that started in the weight station was doing the treadmill block I had just completed. So when I started on the treadmill with one half of the class, the other half started with weights—and then we switched. The entire class is timed, so the person next to you in the weight room might finish in a different spot than you did, where on the treadmill, everyone is doing the same intervals at the same time. No matter where you are, everyone in the room switches stations at the same time.
Once the second block was over in the weight room, I headed back to the treadmill, where we did the exact same interval we completed previously—but in reverse. So we started at a 5% incline and worked our way down. Then, we switched one last time for the fourth block, where there was a new set of weight-room exercises. But this time the weight station was a little bit different than before.
This time, we still had four exercises—that didn’t change. However, after we completed the first two exercises (two sets of each), we did a 300 meter row on the row machine. Then, we went back and complete the final two exercises (two sets of each), followed by another 300 meter row.
Next, here are a handful of reviews from real women who have been working out with Orangetheory for over a year:
“I like Orangetheory because it is different every day, and you’re always working different muscle groups. I had never used a row machine before, but rowing is one of the best exercises you can do because you utilize almost all of your muscles. The group setting is also great so that I feel challenged to work harder, and I burn upward of 500 calories per class.” — Tina P., Frisco, Texas
“I’ve been doing Orangetheory for 2 years now. Best workout ever!! I️ love that the workout is different every day, and that it incorporates the full body (every class is part treadmill, rower, and weight room). Two years in I️ STILL get sore!! It’s great to be able to see your heart rate on the board too (since you wear a monitor), so you can challenge yourself. Plus, I’ve found that the coaches and other clients are super nice and great to be around (at least here in Nashville). It may seem a little pricey, but I️ think it’s 100% worth it!!” — Kelly R., Nashville, Tennessee
“I have achieved new fitness levels because of Orangetheory. The cost is on the high end, but the calorie burn in each class makes it worth it. I would have never pushed myself this hard on my own.” — Jessica H., Rockwall, Texas
“I’ve been doing orange theory for about a year and a half in Birmingham, AL and I love it! I love that everyday is a different workout so you’re always challenged. I also love that it’s the right balance of being coached and being a part of class while still being able to go at your own pace.” — Haley S., Birmingham, Alabama
“I’ve been going over two years now in STL and LOVE it still. I love that you can use it anywhere, so traveling is no longer an excuse to get out of your routine. I will say classes feel better when you like the trainer, but, overall, it’s hard not to feel accomplished and exhilarated after a class! Best shape I’ve been in since high school.” — Ashley J., St. Louis, Missouri
“I like Orangetheory because the workouts are different every time, and it works so many different parts of the body. It’s hard, but you feel so good after doing everything! I also like the accountability, cleanliness of the gyms, and that my trainers do a customized workout for me because they know I can “handle” it. They’ll increase the difficulty for me.” — Adaleta A., Tucson, Arizona”
“My sister and I love going to orangetheory fitness classes because they are challenging but yet still so much fun! We look forward to a new workout every time we go. Their fitness instructors are well trained, encouraging and always greet us with a smile!” — The Double Take Girls, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
And finally, here are a few FAQs on the Orangetheory workout program:
During an Orangetheory workout, is there a trainer in the room?
Yes. There will be a professional instructor in the room at all times, who will guide you through the entire workout.
Are there different types of Orangetheory workouts/classes?
Yes, there are different types of classes. The class I just described from today was an Orange 60 class. While all of the classes have the same intensity and flow, in addition to the Orange 60 class, there are also Orange 3G classes and tornado classes. The main difference between an Orange 60 and an Orange 3G class is in a 3G, all three stations—treadmill, rower, and weights—are being used at the same time (unlike today where there was not a row-specific station). And in a tornado class, you’re switching between the stations very quickly. You might spend two minutes on the treadmill before switching over to the rowers, where you’ll spend 90 seconds before switching to the weight room.
I heard you have to wear a heart rate monitor. Is this true?
Orangetheory encourages members to purchase and wear a heart rate monitor. According to the Orangetheory website, wearing a heart rate monitor allows participants to “see results in real time.”
However, wearing a heart rate monitor is not a requirement to workout. I forget mine at home all the time and it’s no big deal!
What is EPOC?
This is the main reason you want to wear a heart rate monitor—so that you can gauge whether or not you’ve reached EPOC. According to the Orangetheory website, “The physiological theory behind the Orangetheory workout is known as ‘Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption,’ or EPOC.” When you spend twelve minutes or more in the orange zone (aka EPOC), you’ll achieve the “‘after burn’ effect, which is an increased metabolic rate for up to 36 hours after the workout.” I am not a trainer or physiologist, so to learn more about EPOC, visit Orangetheory’s website here or speak with someone at a studio.
Overall, I HIGHLY recommend Orangetheory Fitness. The music is always blasting, the workouts are different and interesting, and every day is a new challenge. During today’s Orangetheory workout, I burned about 500 calories and had a ton of energy once I left. Like I’ve mentioned a couple of times, I LOVE these workouts because every single class is different. I’ve been to almost 100 classes and have never done the same routine twice (at least I haven’t noticed if I have). So if you’re like me and HATE monotony, Orangetheory might be a great choice for you.
I also want to mention that your first class at Orangetheory is completely free. Give you local studio a call and ask them when you should come in for a free workout!
Do you guys have any other questions? Let me know in the comments below.