November 2018

Orange is the New Fit: Set your metabolism on fire at Orangetheory® Fitness

Author: Linda S. Hopkins | Photographer: M.Kat Photography

Whether you are a serious gym rat, a self-proclaimed couch potato, or somewhere in between, in today’s information age, it’s hard to ignore what’s going on in the fitness world. If you are the teensiest bit curious about the newest addition to the boutique fitness craze, or if you just want to torch some calories so you can look and feel your best, pop into Orangetheory Fitness in the Sea Turtle Marketplace on Hilton Head Island and experience the workout that is taking the world by storm. With over 1,000 franchise studios (and counting), the Lowcountry is right on-trend with the scientifically proven, heart rate-based approach to exercise.

“Because of the science behind it, this workout is for everybody,” said local franchise owner and longtime fitness enthusiast, Kelly Ogden. “People of all ages and fitness levels can do it and be successful.”

The orange effect

At Orangetheory Fitness, orange is not just a hip color on the walls; it is representative of the exercise theory that makes this workout so effective across the board. While heart rate monitoring isn’t new, what makes it exciting is the fresh way the exercises are presented and organized—a unique trifecta of science, coaching, and technology, designed to maximize your benefits. The 60-minute workout that many local participants are calling their “happy hour,” is fast-paced but completely individualized, like a cross between group fitness and personal training.

Here’s how it works: As you move to the instructor’s commands, you track your workout via a wearable heart monitoring device and adjust your intensity to stay in your target heart rate zone, which you will see displayed on a giant screen throughout class. The goal is to experience the “Orange Effect,” which occurs when you spend a minimum of 12 to 20 minutes, combined, in the orange and red zones. According to Ogden, this guarantees an “afterburn” up to 36 hours after class, meaning that calories continue to sizzle long after you leave the studio—a scientific concept called excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC).

One of the most striking differences in the workout is the class format. According to Coach “L.A.” (Ashley) Hall, unlike the myriad group fitness classes she has taught over the past five years, at OTF, she enjoys the opportunity to circulate among the participants, offering one-on-one instruction, guidance and encouragement along the way. “I feel like it is more effective when we are able to walk around and coach rather than doing the exercise,” she said. “I also enjoy the energy the participants bring to class, because they are ready to do exactly what you say. They know stepping into it (unless it’s their first time) that it’s going to be a tough workout, and they are striving for their ‘splat points’ (points earned for working within the specified training zone). I’m there to assist them in doing that rather than it being a show.”

“It’s kind of like a family,” Coach AJ Staley added. “Everyone is headed toward the same goal and has the same mindset.”

The element of surprise
The Orangetheory workout consists of three components: endurance, strength and power, but the focus changes every day, making each session a surprise, according to Head Coach Ashley Rockwell. While you can look at the schedule and know who the instructor will be, you won’t know which workout is coming until you walk into class, she explained. “You are never going to do the exact same workout twice, and you can’t cherry-pick the classes you like to avoid exercises you don’t want to do. But once you’ve done the workout, you leave with a sense of accomplishment and feel great!”

Friendly competition
Technically speaking, at OTF, you are only competing with yourself by working to improve your performance. And that’s where strong coaching comes into play. “We’re going to try to push you to do better when you can do better. As you’re getting more in shape, we encourage you to push past what you were doing previously,” Staley said.

At the same time, you may enjoy a little friendly competition within your fitness family. At OTF, you will get plenty of encouragement from fellow participants as well as an opportunity to sign up for a variety of challenges including the eight-week Transformation Challenge, Marathon, a new rowing challenge coming soon, and the recent “dri-tri”—a simulated triathlon without the water.

Try it for free!
First-time local residents are invited to try Orangetheory Fitness Hilton Head for free. You can sign up online or drop by the studio to reserve a spot in class. When you fall in love with the workout (and you will), a variety of membership packages are available, with no annual contract required. What’s more, your pre-paid sessions will be honored at any OTF studio, so you can get in your orange zone most anywhere your travels may take you.

Whether you are a seasoned fitness veteran or a newbie who has never graced the door of a gym, at OTF, you’re going to get a workout that will challenge your body in a precise way that is perfect for you. The hour blinks by, because it’s so much fun, and you get to leave with a sense of accomplishment, more energy for the day, a greater zest for life.

Who wants the kind of metabolism that keeps gobbling up calories while you eat, sleep, and go about your day? Get it at Orangetheory Fitness Hilton Head.

Orangetheory Fitness Hilton Head is located at 430 William Hilton Parkway, in the new Sea Turtle Marketplace on Hilton Head Island. For more information, visit or call (843) 473-4505. Like them on Facebook at otfhhi.

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