If you live in America you have heard of Orangetheory Fitness and if you haven’t heard of it, it is just a matter of time before you will. They are in 45 states in the United States and in 16 countries. Every year brings new fitness trends that become popular and slowly fade away. Examples include waist trainers, skinny teas, and shake weights. This trend, however, looks like it might be here to stay. With so many gym membership opportunities it may be hard to decipher which ones are worth the money and which ones aren’t. Orangetheory is one that is worth it. At least, that is what I can tell from one-day complimentary class. Orangetheory has been around for 16 years and I have driven past it on numerous occasions, but it wasn’t until this year that it peaked my interests as I witnessed all my friends purchase memberships and start reaching their fitness goals. That’s when I knew I had to give it a try.
Tired, is an understatement. You are going to be beyond tired if you aren’t used to a boot camp style workout. It is a 60-minute HIT interval workout which basically means you go all out during a shorter period of time and then you recover. By continuing that cycle you are sure to burn maximum calories. At least that is what the scientists and fitness experts say. The concept is simple yet super effective. When you first arrive, you are given a heart-rate monitor for a particular class. The classes tend to change throughout the week. You may find yourself in a stretch class, power classes, or strength classes. Most gyms start all the members off in two groups. Half of the members go to the treadmill and the other half goes to the rowers. There is also a weight and resistance section that each group utilizes for a certain amount of time. As soon as the clock starts, immediately you go right into an all-out, full on, exercise beast mode. You are going full speed and giving it all you got. The treadmill was my least favorite part because like most Americans, I hate running and I hate cardio. But I understand it is needed to help me reach my fitness goals, so if I do it, I want to be done in a fun way. That is just what you get at this gym.
You get a spunky and super hype instructor who remembers your name (or maybe it’s the huge screen on the wall that says your name) and she pushes you and encourages you and just gets you excited to work out even if it isn’t your favorite thing to do. The appealing thing is that If you aren’t a confident treadmill runner, they will allow you to ride a stationary bike instead until you feel comfortable moving on the treadmill. As you move from treadmill to rower, from rower, to weight area or as they call it “the floor” your heart rate will continue to climb and you will burn a huge number of calories. You know you are doing well as far as heart rate goes if you are in the green zone or ABOVE, there are 5 zones. Z one which is the gray zone means you are doing a very light activity, zone 2 or the blue zone means you are in the warm-up stage. Zone 3 or the green zone means you are in he is challenging zone. Zone 4 or the orange zone means you are in the uncomfortable zone and you are pushing yourself at 90%. Zone 5 or the red zone means you are giving all-out effort at 100% and you have most likely burnt 500 calories or more.
While green zone or above is considered good the goal is to stay in the orange and red zone for most of the session because that is where your heart rate is the highest and you burn the most calories. Now earlier when I discussed how every day they focused on something specific, yeah, they don’t actually tell you beforehand. They want you to get there, and just be surprised. This is a concept that has been very effective because, if you are one that doesn’t fancy endurance workouts, then you won’t show up to class if you see endurance on the schedule for the day. This way you will keep coming to the gym and be almost forced to do the workouts you enjoy and don’t enjoy as well.
At the end of the class, you will get a summary of how you did. They will also email the results to you within 24 hours. You will be able to see how many splat points you earned. Splat points are basically the number of minutes you spent in the red and orange zones. Now, during my trail, my splat points weren’t that high but I burnt over 500 calories which is hard to do in any form of workout and that’s how I know this boot camp style of training is effective. Now, what about costs? Orangetheory is not cheap, well, if you are trying to see real results it isn’t cheap. There is a basic package that is $59 but it only allows you to take 4 classes a month. Not enough to see a real difference. The next step up is the orange elite at $99 a month. This contract is 8 sessions per month which is decent if you don’t have major fitness goals. The final level is orange premier which is unlimited sessions for $159. For most people, they may think that is a little steep for a gym membership, but once you get bitten by the Orangetheory book there’s no turning back. I just signed up for my official membership today. They got me, guys.