We are huge fans of oranges here at Peachtree Roadies. Without oranges we couldn’t have mimosas. And without mimosas we wouldn’t have this blog or a history of regrettable choices from Georgia football games. However, we aren’t so sure oranges and working out mix.
Orange Theory is a chain of gyms that has taken over the city of Atlanta. Their expansion is actually pretty remarkable. In fact, there are five Orange Theory locations within 10 miles of my house. It seems like the studios have been popping up faster than pimples after a three day fast food binge. And I don’t really bring this up as a positive factor. It seemed to me, even before giving the workout a fair shake, that Orange Theory is the Applebee’s of gyms. There’s one on every corner, the product is clearly developed for mass production, and although you enter with the highest hopes, the orange
workout chicken never completely satisfies.
Kelly and I joined our friend Amanda for the sneak peek of the new Metropolis location in Midtown. Straight away we hit a couple snags. Parking is a big hassle. The garage is old and confusing, kind of like my Media Law professor in college (yuck!), and you have to walk through a labyrinth to make it to the studio. Once we walked into the gym, the lobby was pretty chaotic. To their credit, it was their “mock week” so they were still understandably working out some kinks. They told us we had to arrive 30 minutes early to get a tour and fill out some forms – but we ended up sitting around for most of that time trying not to look super lame and staying out of people’s way. There wasn’t a locker (with actual locks) to store our stuff, so we had to run back to our cars to stash our supplies. (You can bring a lock and store your stuff there, but otherwise, I would leave valuables in the car. The lockers are right by the door – which would make it easy for someone to take off with your stuff in 5 seconds flat.) But hey, at least that gave us something to do. (Can we talk about the facial expressions in the photo below? HILARIOUS!)
THEN, my friends, THEN they made us strap on these heart monitors under our sternums (which is gym talk for bust line) right up against our skin. I was NOT feeling this at all. Were they clean? How many times had they been used? Was I going to get a rash or some incurable skin infection from this? I should report that they did seem clean, smelled fine, not really suspect at all, but those skin eating bacteria are invisible – and I wasn’t thrilled about taking my chances.
After we got a tour of the equipment we finally started the class. The class consisted of two sections – 30 minutes on a treadmill with varying intensity and 30 minutes of interval weight training. What’s really cool about this class is the bust line heart monitors are able to track how hard you are working and let you know how many calories you are burning. Additionally, your “score” is available for you to see on flat screen TVs, so if you’re the competitive type you can compare your workout to the strangers around you. They are encouraging us to judge ourselves and our neighbors constantly, so it feels a lot like middle school gym in that sense.
The workout was pretty good. I was schvitzing like a pig almost the entire time – but I just really wasn’t feeling it. 30 minutes on the treadmill seemed too long. I got bored. The instructor was great, very motivating, but it was super hard to hear him over the loud speaker. The space itself felt like a dirty warehouse to me. Not the fully spa atmosphere that you know I am a sucker for. Also, they tried to sell us HARD after the class, and we felt trapped in a sales pitch for a solid 20 minutes. They also don’t validate parking for longer than an hour, so not only did the sales pitch annoy us, it cost me a whopping $3. Lame!
Although I don’t think anyone will mistake this for a super positive review, I do think this gym could be a really great fit for some people. I don’t have any in mind, but they are out there. The gym was pretty busy!
They wouldn’t let us take home the pricing information. I guess it’s confidential? Whatever, I was tired of the sales pitch and wanted to hit the road anyway. BUT – the first class is free, so give it a try if you have some free time, and the new Midtown location is running some specials this week (call for more information) until their official grand opening on February 13th. It’s definitely worth a try!
Will we be back? Sorry, Charlie. It’s not a fit for me.