Thirty minutes of HIIT? Hell yeah.
Fourty-five minutes of HIIT. Umm, OK.
But sixty minutes?
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous about trying Orangetheory Fitness, which launched in Bondi, Sydney, last week when I heard it meant a whole hour of intense HIIT training. But having done it, I’d happily put my hand up for it again and again.
Born in the Unites States, Orangetheory Fitness is a revolutionary concept set to take on Australia (and the world), with the launch of two stores in Sydney and Adelaide this month. A unique form of training, Orangetheory is a 60-minute, heart rate-monitored, high-intensity group interval training, specifically designed to maximise calorie burn.
Founder Ellen Latham has undoubtedly done her research, fusing heart rate technology with the science of excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC) to create a workout that burns (according to Latham) an average of around 3700kJ (that’s 900 calories!) per session when you include after-burn of up to 36 hours!
So how does Orangetheory Fitness burn calories?
The sessions combine cardiovascular and strength training, using a variety of equipment including treadmills, water rowers, TRX suspension training and free weights, but the real secret is the heart rate monitoring system designed exclusively for Orangetheory Fitness.
Each person is given a heart rate monitor that is connected to a screen showing everyone’s statistics: current heart rate and zone, calorie burn and minutes spent in the ‘orange zone’ (that high intensity range above the usual steady fat burn level). This is used to continuously monitor your training and ensure you spend 12-20 minutes in the ‘orange zone’ to kick-start your after-burn.
Now, if you have images of Times Square billboards showcasing your lack of fitness with a heart rate on the verge of flat lining, no need to fear. Other folks are too busy checking out their own scores to take any notice of yours! In fact, I found the class to be overwhelmingly encouraging rather than competitive. It certainly pushes you, but to a point that’s tailored to you and your own fitness progress. This unique training format has proven extremely effective, helping tens of thousands of members so far in the US lose weight, tone up, burn calories and meet their overall fitness goals in a short amount of time. (Which is always handy when summer’s fast approaching!)
Orangetheory Fitness has become one of the world’s top fitness franchises, with over 200 studios in the US and international locations in South America, Canada and the United Kingdom.
“It all started in 2010 with a single Fort Lauderdale studio, and we are now an international brand with demand for Orangetheory Fitness studios growing each day,” says chief executive officer, Dave Long.
Along with recent openings in Bondi Junction, Sydney and Hawthorn, Adelaide, Orangetheory Fitness is set to launch in Brisbane soon and, if the States is anything to go by, all over the country before too long.