ORANGE You Glad We're Friends

1:39 PM

...and that I'm older than you ;)
The Bestest had to work, so she couldn't celebrate my birthday with me and everyone else on Saturday. So, instead she invited me out for dinner to celebrate, which rapidly turned into us taking a workout class at Orange Theory Fitness in Natomas, then grabbing dinner.

So random, but the Bestest and I always try new workout places and classes together. We have taken probably every 24 hour workout class possible together, at about almost every location in Sacramento, for starters. We've both experienced Midtown Strength & Conditioning, Fitness Rangers, and Team Ride together. So it was fitting and also our style to try a new spot together. She's actually a member here currently, so it wasn't a new experience for her. The Lil has also been going to one of these for awhile now, since she lives within walking distance to one.
My thoughts going into this, prior to walking into one of these facilities: it's chain, it's boughie, it's overpriced, but I'm sure I'll still sweat. Yes, there are certain times in my life when I tend to be more cynical, versus my normal optimistic outlook. When it comes to working out, I'm okay with trying a new workout style and/or places, but I generally don't give them the benefit of the doubt. I also tend to workout harder by myself, but I love working out with the Bestest and other friends, I just don't feel like I concentrate enough.

That being said, I was still a little snarky about going here. Just seems boughie and a little yuppie for my liking. Even though both the Lil and the Bestest workout here, I still had this thought.

Upon entering, you realize they take their branding seriously. Everything is orange with hints of grey. You walk in and the receptionist table is right there, there is little section selling all their retail merchandise, there are some random banners and information in random spots, you can see the workout room that uses orange lighting and is somewhat dim lit as well, a bench to rest on, a TV, and additional cubbies (to store your stuff safely). The check-in dude or receptionist was really cool. I had to fill out a waiver and information sheet, but he got to the point and asked if I already paid to workout somewhere else. I has honest and said yes, so we didn't have to do the awkward dance of him trying to sell me a package and me politely declining it. He knew I was there to get in my free workout and probably wouldn't be coming back.
Do you know anything about Orange Theory Fitness? From what I didn't remember from what Lil had mentioned, was that everything is based on a heart rate monitor. I had to leave my license and debit card with them, just in case I forgot to give back the monitor I borrowed for the class. He told me how to put it on and even mentioned to add water for a better reading (even though it will be super cold). I did not think I'd have such a hard time with putting that thing on, nor did I think the water would be that cold! HAHA!
From a little research, here is Orange's philosophy:
Base. Push. All Out. Fitness, meet science. The idea of Orangetheory is this: a 60-minute workout designed to push you into the Orange Zone. This creates "Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption," or EPOC. It's what burns calories after your workout and gives you noticeable, lasting results with Orangetheory Fitness.

Since I was knew, I was asked to get there a half hour before class started. Once the previous class left, my heart rate monitor was secure, and my liability waiver was signed I met my instructor. How awful is it, I think his name was Scott, but I don't even remember now (and it was just last night)? He walked me through how to use their treadmills, water rowers, and talked about their base/push methodology. The Bestest broke down the color zones and the numbers I should hit. What I knew and focused on, you need to have 12 or higher in the Orange color and red meant you were working HARD. That's the gist of it.
After we walked through everything, he invited the class in. I let the Bestest choose where we start - cardio or strength. She chose strength, she hates cardio. So we sat on the rowers and warmed up. Our first overall set was TRX work w/ the rower, doing various reps and distances. The next set was the long running set on the treadmill. My base as a 'runner' is 1% incline and 5.5 speed, then your push is determined by what the instructor says. We focused mostly on speed intervals for the long round. Then we were back to our strength where we used weights for arms and abs for half of the set, the next half was using the medicine ball for push-ups and abs. Lastly, we finished off with our last cardio set. This was more incline based, with a finisher of pushing to our max.
I sweat the entire time. BUT I never got in the red. However, I was having a serious internal debate -- do I push hard to get red (the competitor in me totally wanted too and was at some points) or do I take it somewhat easy since I have Shamrock'n on Sunday? I didn't want tired legs for the week and/or race, but I also didn't want to look like a novice. I knew the Orange number would be easy to attain, but I thought I'd get some red, at least one or two. Nada. None. Zero. Zilch!

During the workout, you can see everyone's color levels. Two of the TVs near the tready's had your name (some people have fun names and others use their real name) and would show your current heart rate and color block you were working in. Mine was not where I thought it would be the entire time. I did mess with my heart rate monitor and moved it under my sports bra, but that slowed down my heart rate number. I put it back to its original spot and it seemed to get a higher reading, I left it there. Admittedly, I have no idea what the correlation means really, but I knew I had a goal of red -- even if that goes against the Orange theory. If you like competitor or thrive in that setting, then you'd love this style of workout.
At the end I was complaining about not hitting red and Scott said he barely hits red too, if he does he has to be sprinting for more than 3 mins. That made me feel a little better, but still not really. Anyways, class was over, machines were wiped down, and we headed out to the receptionist area.

I didn't mind the heart rate monitor as much as I thought I would. It took a few mins to get used too, but I wouldn't prefer to wear one over not wearing one. Scott was good and since there is so much going on in class, I'm glad they had a TV showing the strength workout on it, it was helpful. Both employees were really nice and helpful, yet laid back and welcoming.

All that being said, I won't be signing up as a paid member. It was a good workout, but just not how I'd prefer to work out. It's a little more than what I pay at Midtown, so it would have had to W-O-W me for me to commit to it. Also, I believe you have to sign up for classes on-line or via the app beforehand, I'm not into that. However, they are tech based and also have an app that you can check and track your workouts, which is cool -- even if the Bestest has the hardest time using her app and logging in ;)

I can see how they are thriving and popping up everywhere. Even though I won't be spending money there, I get why a person may chose to do so. The Natomas spot was cool and I enjoyed my experience there. Next, it was time to go re-feed, since we burned some calories. Hey, Scott even told us too...

We headed to Orchid Thai, a new-ish spot on the Grid that I've been saying I want to try for a good year or so. The Guidette met up with us to join in the celebration. When we go there we noticed Tuesday has all day happy hour, so we sat in the bar area to take advantage of that.
A well deserved glass of wine, chicken satay, fresh Summer rolls, Bangkok wings, chicken pad Thai, and an order of pad see ew later we were stuffed. The Guidette doesn't eat Thai often, so we ordered a buffet of options for her to try. Between bouts of laughter, some Guidette Snapchat cameo's, and gossiping we devoured most of our food. It's been awhile since we've all hung out, it was really nice.
I couldn't have asked for a more fun way to celebrate my birthday with the Bestest, sweat and food, that's our style for sure! I'm thinking I may find a new fun spot for us to try, here again soon, since we always have fun working out together...and then eating afterwards!

I'm not cheating on Midtown, they will forever be my gym!

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