Last Friday, I arranged for a mini blog squad workout with Lindsey and Laura at the newly opened Orangetheory Fitness Red Deer, before heading across the street for a cocktail. Do we know how to kick off a long weekend, or what?
Despite knowing the general format of an OTF workout, I wasn’t sure what to expect from a ‘regular’ class (currently this facility doesn’t do private classes like I experienced at my first OTF class). We arrived half an hour early to fill out our client intake and get a rundown on what our workout would look like. The cool thing about OTF is that every studio is designed and layout out exactly the same.
The biggest difference right off the bat, however, was that we were outfitted with heart rate monitors worn on our forearms, rather than the chest strap style I had tried in Calgary. We were told that the give a more accurate readout, especially during rowing where the chest strap may come off your body with the forward reaching movement. I did notice that once I got nice and sweaty in the workout, my forearm band would slip down. It was definitely more comfortable then the chest strap so I must say, I preferred this style of monitor.
Our trainer, Kevin (who may have won me over with his cute accent by the end of the class), gave us a whirlwind rundown of what to expect that made my head spin before saying that we’d get the hang of it once we got going. He wasn’t wrong, we did figure it out. I do appreciate that they take the time to go over the class format and how the equipment works prior to class starting to ease the ‘newbies’ in, even if our introduction felt a bit rushed.
Before we knew it we were on the rowers completing a 1km row. Once upon a time when I was an avid Crossfitter, I perfected my rowing form and from my last OTF class in Calgary, felt like it came right back to me, rowing with ease throughout my workout. This time, however, Kevin kept a watchful eye on me and kept stopping me to show me what I was doing wrong. It was definitely frustrating because I felt like I was doing it right! Despite my slight annoyance, I really appreciate that OTF trainers are able to give you tips to help your form, keep you safe and improve your abilities. It’s not often that you get that kind of personalized attention in a group fitness class.
After we completed our 1km row, we headed to the weight area to complete our floor circuits. This consisted of
- 12 overhead TRX pulls
- 12 seated balance bicep curls
- 12 ISO lunge with shoulder press/side
- 20 total alternating plank rows
- 12 supermans
- 250 metre row
- Repeat as many times until time was up.
While we completed our floor series, the other half of the class was working on the treadmills. The treadmill portion consisted of intervals between base pace and push pace, with only one all out sprint at the end. I kept my pace at the very low end of the jogger level, since I was running a race the Sunday and didn’t want my legs to be totally fatigued. Regardless, the formula for these workouts leaves you dripping with sweat.
I ended up with the perfect number of splat points in the end, which I learned represented a fat cell exploding! Boom! I had no regrets about following up this workout with a cold brew, knowing I burned almost 600 calories and would continue burning calories with the after-burn affect. It’s really quite amazing reading about the science behind these workouts.
While some may look at the cost of these classes as being high ($28 per drop in, $360 for 20 classes, etc), I think the value justifies it indefinitely. I feel as though you’re receiving the same benefit you would from a personal training session, but in a group environment. The trainers are attentive to your needs and genuinely interested in helping you succeed in your goals. You can’t get that level of attention from other group fitness classes.
If you haven’t checked it out yet, I highly recommend going online to book. Your first class is free, so you’ve really got nothing to lose (save for some calories and fat cells).