Worth the Drive

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To get the results that you want in fitness, all you have to do is put one foot in front of the other and commit to the process. For Eryn, all it took for her was to walk through the studio doors of Orangetheory (OT).

Like so many others before, Eryn worked out by herself at a gym. Her normal routine consisted of 50 minutes of cardio and 10 minutes of weights on the machines. She felt lost with no direction and never knew what to do. Not seeing the results she wanted, she took a new approach.

I felt empowered and so excited to come back.”

Eryn heard about OT and couldn’t wait to try it. In the fall of 2017, she took a tour at the OT studio in West Linn. The coaches and front counter staff made her feel welcomed. She then joined the Orangetheory nation.

However, her time there didn’t last long. She cancelled her membership and moved to Vernonia in February. The closest studio she could go to was Orenco Station. Her hiatus from OT was short lived.

A few months later, she rejoined at Orenco Station. She knew the value of it and how Orangetheory gave her the results she wanted. She said, “I was nervous to join a new studio but after one class I knew that the hour drive was worth it no matter how crazy my family thought I was for driving so far. I have taken classes at a number of studios but the environment at Orenco Station is something special. The staff is one of a kind…they truly care about all members and are there for you no matter what.”

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She recalls taking her first class during Hell Week, which is not for the faint of heart. Although she felt terrified at first, the fear eventually went away and after class she never felt better. “I felt empowered and so excited to come back,” she said.

Two and a half years later, Orangetheory has not only helped her lose fat and gain muscle, but also accomplish things she never thought possible. Eryn said, “In 2019 I was able to run eight half marathons and finished my very first full marathon. OTF is like no other. I always feel supported and motivated by my peers.”

The things, which motivate her and keep her coming back are the constant results. Her body continues to evolve and transform. She recently gained a new personal record (PR) on the weight room floor. She lifted weights that she never thought she could lift and last month she ran her fastest mile ever.

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Photo courtesy of Eryn Palo.

“OTF has not only transformed my body, but also has helped transform my mind. I have never been more confident in my abilities in the gym, but also in my personal life I have the strength to make positive changes. I know that with some hard work and consistency I can do anything. I mean, I ran 26.2 miles last year – there is nothing that I can’t do.”

She enjoys turning on the treadmill and pushing herself on endurance days. Strength days prove difficult for her, but she never misses a strength day because she knows she needs to work on this the most. “I have goals to gain more muscle and the amazing coaches have helped me get closer to this goal each week. Another benefit of OTF is the workouts, which are never the same; so even after so many classes, I never get bored. They always keep us on our toes,” said Eryn.

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Her friends and family ask what it is about Orangetheory that keeps her coming back? One word– community. Last year was hard for her. She struggled with mental health issues causing a brief disappearance, but she never felt alone. Her OT family reached out to her to make sure she was okay.

This past Thanksgiving, her crazy Orangtheory Run Squad talked her into doing a 90-minute class and following it up by crushing a 5K race together. Eryn said, “Holidays are meant to be spent with family and I am so grateful I was surrounded by my OTF family this Thanksgiving. That has to be the thing that I love most – the family that I have gained.”

They supported her every step of the way. When she felt ready to come back, she felt as if she didn’t miss a day. She has created lifelong friends at Orenco Station and feels grateful. During the Dri-Tri last year, Persia asked her, “Remember where you were five years ago? Look at where you are now!” This brought her to tears when she came so close to slowing down during the workout. Persia gave her the motivation she needed to keep going.

OT has helped her stay accountable and has given her the strength to improve many things in her life. Eryn feels much stronger mentally and physically.

Keep Burning Eryn!

A Fresh Approach to Training

Nicole Jones

If you’ve ever met Nicole, you’ll know that she has an outgoing and friendly personality. She always walks in with a smile on her face ready to conquer her workout at the studio. Orangetheory (OT) breaks up her busy day as a physical therapist or tending to her chickens at home. Nicole arrives ready for class whether it’s a themed day or signature workout dominating all the classes she takes.

“I needed something that would push me more than I would push myself at a regular gym.”

Nicole came to Orangetheory Orenco Station as a well-seasoned endurance athlete. She had a busy running season in 2018 running the Maui Oceanfront Marathon in January, Boston Marathon in April and Berlin Marathon in September. Thinking of these marathons would make anyone tired…phew.

Granted she accomplished these major feats, her mind and body were exhausted from the thought of going out for another long run for training. She wanted to do something fresh and different and that’s when she signed up for her first class at Orenco Station.

Nicole has a great familiarity with how to work out as a physical therapist. “I needed something that would push me more than I would push myself at a regular gym,” said Nicole. She remembers taking her first “power” day class – a hard one at that. When she worked out on her own, her idea of a “power” day was running sprints or doing fartleks.

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“I’m so stoked to have hit 7:16:00 on the 2,000m (row) DRITRI and not feel like I was toast and ended up finishing first for the women at Orenco. My overall efficiency has greatly improved and the rower is now one of my favorite parts of the OTF workouts.”

She had never worked so hard on the water rower and loved how exhausted she felt – she was immediately hooked on OT! Knowing the variety of new workouts and knowing that she’ll improve each month keeps her coming back for more. Nicole said, “I ran one of my fastest 5ks during my first DRITRI last month and was so happy that all the hard work and encouragement I get each day from the coaches really pay off.”

Prior to starting her fitness routine at OT, she set a long-term goal of completing all of the six major marathons. She’s completed Maui, Boston and Berlin, and is ready to take on London, New York and Tokyo. “Some races are based on time qualifications, charity or lottery. I knew I needed to change my workout regimen and challenge myself more if I were going to get another time qualifier. It’s going to be a long road but I’m excited to get there,” said Nicole.  

She continues to improve her marathon time and makes smaller goals periodically of running at a faster base pace or rowing a distance under a particular time. Nicole’s biggest improvement at the studio is on the rower. Her form has vastly improved translating into better times.

She said, “I’m so stoked to have hit 7:16:00 on the 2,000m (row) DRITRI and not feel like I was toast and ended up finishing first for the women at Orenco. My overall efficiency has greatly improved and the rower is now one of my favorite parts of the OTF workouts.”

Not surprising at all, Nicole likes “endurance” days at the studio as a marathon runner. Although her body may want to stop, she tells herself to keep going and her body will follow. “Endurance challenges are all about mind power and having a mantra that will carry you through has always helped me,” said Nicole.

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She loves that everyone pushes themselves to be a happier and healthier human in class. When she sees the person next to her grab a heavier weight or increase the speed by 0.1, she does the same. Nicole knows that Orangetheory has an amazing atmosphere, which welcomes and challenges anyone at any fitness level.

Last month, Nicole visited an OT studio in Nashville, Tennessee and it made her realize how special Orenco Station is. She loves walking into a place where she is welcomed with a smile and encouraging coaches. Everyone interacts with each other and she’s happy to have gained so many new friends at OT Orenco Station.

Nicole said, “This may be cheesy; however, with being in my profession, I am always aspiring people to get healthier and stronger and OTF does just this.”

 Keep Burning Nicole!