The goal of Orangetheory’s hour-long classes is to reach your “orange zone,” which is when you are using 84-91% of your max. heart rate, and stay there for a total of 12 minutes. If you succeed in doing this, you reap the rewards of what they call the “after burn,” where your body burns 20% more calories for the next 24 to 36 hours. Everyone in the class wears a heart rate monitor. Your live stats are displayed on a screen so you can track how hard you are working. And, yes, your name and heart rate are displayed on the screen, but I can promise no one is looking at yours—everyone is too busy tracking their own. Your heart rate has nothing to do with your skill level, just how hard you are pushing yourself. It’s completely individual which removes all the competitive stigma surrounding the workout. “I taught a class the other day that had a 65-year-old woman with a pacemaker next to a Miami Dolphin [football player],” says founder Ellen Latham. “To get to [the orange zone] it might only take her to bring her [treadmill] incline up to a 3, whereas because he’s mega fit, he may have to start running pretty darn hard to get there.”
There are 22 Orangetheory Fitness locations in the GTA, find the closest one to you here.