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!

Escaping Groundhog’s Day

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Many who’ve worked out on their own tend to get into a routine doing the same things over and over again when hitting the gym. This was no different for Angie who had gym memberships at various places after completing college. A mother of three boys, she gained some extra weight and lost some strength and stamina in the process.

No matter how much she went to the gym, she couldn’t seem to lose the weight. She found herself having to talk herself into going. When she went, she’d do the same things as she did previously with no results. She said, “My fitness routine was like the movie Groundhog’s Day. I was frustrated with myself and wanted to make a change, but didn’t know how.”

“I leave every class drenched in sweat, out of breath, and feeling tired and energized all at the same time!”

However, one day that all changed for her. Her husband boldly brought Angie to her first Orangetheory (OT) class at Orenco Station on Valentine’s Day. “I was very nervous because I knew it was a group fitness class, and I have always felt intimidated in any group fitness class I have ever taken. I almost didn’t go, but he convinced me to just give it a try. So, I did and the rest is history,” said Angie.

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She remembers taking her first class feeling intimidated and assumed being self-conscious not intending to sign up for a membership. By the end of class, she knew she found what she was looking for. Angie felt pushed, challenged and encouraged. She said, “By the end of that class, I was tired, drenched in sweat, and knew I hadn’t experienced a workout like that in over 10 years.”

Going to class helps her be the best version of herself. Her commitment to working out regularly helps her relieve stress while transforming herself into a physically, mentally and emotionally stronger person.

“I am a mom of three young and busy boys, am a special education teacher, and have a husband who travels frequently. My days are filled to the brim with endless to-dos so my time at OTF is often the only ‘me’ time I get each week. As Coach Kim always mentions, ‘It is the one hour of your day where you can focus on you,’ and I try to take full advantage of that. As busy as my days and nights are, I know how important it is for me to get my workouts in, and I find myself looking forward to the next workout the minute the last one ends.” 

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Angie’s main goal when she started OT was to get back to her weight prior to having children. With the help of great coaching, exercise nutrition and an extra boost from the Transformation Challenge, she lost 15 pounds and has gone down a couple of sizes in her clothes. She achieved this by making healthy and sustainable life changes.

She continues to work on more goals in several areas. Angie wants to attend four to five classes per week staying consistent. She wants to reduce a little more body fat now that the studio has the InBody scanner, which will help monitor her metrics.

Performance wise, she wants to increase her base and push paces breaking the range of six to eight miles per hour and lift heavier on the floor. Eventually, she wants to run a race in 2020 never having signed up for one her entire life.

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Angie reached a milestone back in March of 2019 by winning the Transformation Challenge by losing seven percent body fat. She attributes her success by also using a food-tracking app helping with her nutrition. She recently turned 40 and hasn’t been in this great of shape since her days in high school.

A great thing about Orangetheory is how no two classes are the same and they never get any easier. Angie said, “I leave every class drenched in sweat, out of breath, and feeling tired and energized all at the same time!” The coaches and staff are genuinely vested in the members wanting to see them be the best versions of themselves.

She loves how OT is truly for everyone regardless of who they are especially for those starting their fitness journey. Along the way, she has had her mom, sister, a few co-workers, and some of her best friends join Orangetheory.

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The community at Orenco always has her coming back for more because of its encouraging, fun and supportive environment. She can always count on seeing smiles and familiar faces when walking into the studio. There’s a sense of togetherness for that hour especially when the workout is extra tough.

Angie knows that Orangetheory has helped her become the best version of herself. She always feels challenged to push herself a little harder and to give a little more than the previous day. Angie also loves that the challenges are almost always to not be better than your neighbor, but to be better than you were previously.

“I am just so grateful that my husband signed me up for that first class almost three years ago, and so grateful that I was brave enough to just give it a try.  Because I was willing to step out of my comfort zone and take a risk, my life changed for the better,” said Angie.

Keep burning Angie!

A Healing Community

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Not too many members take two classes in a day or back-to-back classes, but if you’ve ever met Jozie, he does. He would take three classes per day if he had the opportunity to do so. He is made of sure will and determination.

Jozie is an endurance athlete who always “chomps at the bit” for his next race he can run. He’s the type to run a 5K race and take an Orangetheory (OT) class without the slightest hesitation. Jozie has the endurance to run an ultra marathon if he wanted to.

His co-workers convinced him to try his first class at Orenco Station explaining that it would help him with his running and soccer. He replied with, “Sure, why not. It’s a free class.” Jozie recalls his first class as fun and felt that it was a great workout.

“I feel we should all do at least one thing every day that makes us happy, makes us enjoy life or makes us a better person. I try to do as many as I can and exercise is one of them. Who doesn’t feel better after a workout?”

Jozie played soccer and ran a few times a week with no specific fitness goals in mind prior to joining OT. Sadly, a string of unfortunate events happened after he joined. Jozie lost five family members in a span of five months including his brother whom he was close with.

He gradually slipped into a downward spiral becoming emotionally and physically unhealthy. Jozie quit exercising completely and began gaining weight. He realized one day that he needed to fix this problem – he didn’t know exactly how, but had to try.

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A few months after he took his last class, Jozie appeared at the studio upgrading his membership from an Elite to a Premier membership. Since then, Jozie has attended almost every day and hasn’t stopped. He had no idea how much this impacted him and how it helped him cope with his loss.

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“I’ve met some great people and made new friends.”

The combination of staff, coaches, exercising, having fun, and making new friends helped refresh Jozie emotionally and physically. Health, fitness and community bring him in daily. “I feel we should all do at least one thing every day that makes us happy, makes us enjoy life or makes us a better person. I try to do as many as I can and exercise is one of them. Who doesn’t feel better after a workout?” said Jozie.

Many who come to OT have specific fitness goals they want to achieve, but this really wasn’t the case for Jozie. He said, “I have a couple of goals in mind. But mainly, I will keep working out for my health and for fun! Without health, I won’t be able to do any of the other things I want. The PRs (personal records) and weight loss will eventually follow.”

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Jozie enjoys endurance classes and partner workouts because of the friendly competitiveness, which comes with it. He loves how classes are never boring and how each coach has a distinct style of coaching playing a variety of music avoiding monotony. The most important thing to him, though, is the community.

He has visited other OT studios, but hasn’t found the same ambiance quite like the one at Orenco Station. The members, coaches and staff make the difference. Jozie said, “I’ve met some great people and made new friends.” Jozie’s enthusiasm and passion for OT has earned him a position as an ambassador and voted prom king voted by the staff at Orenco Station. Thank you for support and passion for Orangetheory!

Keep Burning Jozie.

Resonating Words

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A person can tell you many things. Sometimes you forget what they say going through one ear and out the other. However, there are times when a person will tell you something where it simply sticks and resonates with you.

In 2014, Monica’s oncologist gave her words of advice, which were so profound that she shares them with anyone who asks her. After enduring four rounds of chemotherapy, followed by six weeks of daily radiation, she wanted to take control of the cancer she had. Her doctor told her, “…keep up your healthy nutrition routine…work out as hard as you can as often you can and then do more…get seven to eight hours of sound sleep every night.”

When she completed all of her treatments in 2015, Monica asked her doctor once again what she could do to remain healthy and keep the cancer away. He asked her, “Do you remember what I told you when you started? Do those same three things forever!” Since then, Monica continued to follow his advice. Determined not to have cancer take control of her life, Monica took control of it. She began by walking the Camino, a 260 mile trek from Lyon, France to Santiago, Spain with her daughter Kelsey.

“It’s the energy of walking into a place that sparkles, welcomes, and hugs you even when you’re a ‘sweat-ball.’ It’s your new friends who text you when you’re gone from the studio for a while and they want to make sure every thing is OK.”

As she went through her treatment, she remained diligent working out three to four times a week. She tried various types of workouts ranging from Zumba to swinging kettlebells, but she couldn’t find what she wanted the most from those workouts – a community. That’s when she discovered that an Orangetheory (OT) location was opening at Orenco Station only five minutes away from her front door.

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Monica, a little gun-shy, signed up for a membership during pre-sales. Once Orangetheory opened its doors in December of 2016, she showed up for the two-week trial period.  She said, “The first class was terrifying! I remember walking into the studio and standing, frozen, staring at the machines, TV monitors, and the orange of it all!” She had no idea of what she got herself into.

She gave herself the grace and permission to, from the start, quit if she couldn’t handle OT. Monica attended classes two to three times a week and eventually went six to seven times a week embracing the culture. Monica said, “I was hooked. Addicted. Obsessed. In Love. I found my groove – my thing.” Everyone she talks to about OT, she swears, thinks she has joined a cult.

“Just start. Just start and do not quit. Eat healthy. Sleep soundly. And, work out as hard as you can, as often as you can…and then do more.”

The community is the number one reason, which provides Monica her mojo, daily joy and her happy place. She has made so many friends and works out with people who she has come to love. Monica said, “It’s the energy of walking into a place that sparkles, welcomes, and hugs you even when you’re a ‘sweat-ball.’ It’s your new friends who text you when you’re gone from the studio for a while and they want to make sure every thing is OK.” She also landed a new career working with 401(k) accounts from her friend, Milauana, who she befriended by attending classes at the studio.  

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It didn’t take long for her to realize that OT wasn’t all about the equipment and tech, but more about the coaches and how they coached her every step of the way since day one. “They were patient and yet they pushed me. They watched me, and they coached me. I have learned how to row, how to run, how to lift correctly, and how to modify when I need to,” said Monica. She has observed each and every one of the coaches and seen how magnificently they’ve grown individually. Each coach has blossomed into a leader, mentor and a good friend to all – this is why she doesn’t quit.

Monica appreciates how the coaches don’t quit. The coaches show up for special workshops occasionally on Sundays after normal hours of operation. They take the time between classes giving advice and tips to help members with any problems or questions. Coaches provide a contagious energy beginning with high-fives at the start of class to celebrating milestones of any member during and after class.

Since she has joined the Orangetheory family at Orenco Station, Monica has seen real results in many ways. She feels great loaded with vast amounts of energy especially after an early morning strength-day workout. The euphoria from finishing a class empowers her to tackle the day with confidence and power.

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She definitely feels the strength she has gained in her muscles in the past two years. Monica lifts heavier now because the coaches know she can and encourages her to do so. She loves how she doesn’t bat an eyelash now when she adds more weight or making the TRX strap exercises a little more challenging.

Monica’s healthy habits and diligence has rubbed off on her kids and they’ve followed suit. Her daughter Kelsey wants to open an Orangetheory in Vienna, Austria so she can take classes every day. She and Kelsey plan to walk the next Camino – the Portuguese Camino – in 2020. Her sons also send photos of healthy meal prepped foods for the week too.

When people ask her how she stays in shape and how she has so much energy, she tells them, “Just start. Just start and do not quit. Eat healthy. Sleep soundly. And, work out as hard as you can, as often as you can…and then do more.” This advice stuck with Monica and has worked for her – it can work for you too.

Keep Burning Monica!

The Results Speak For Itself

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Most people during their lunch hour look forward to grabbing a bite to eat with friends or co-workers. Not Greg though…he comes to train at the studio working towards his fitness goals.

Prior to joining the Orangetheory (OT) family at Orenco Station, Greg worked out on his own and with a personal trainer to improve his health. After having a physical, Greg learned that he needed to lower his A1C number (blood sugar level) from 6.1 to a level within a normal range of 4 – 5.6 percent. If he didn’t try to take control of his health, Greg would eventually become a diabetic.

No matter what Greg did to improve his condition, nothing helped. He kept on yo-yoing and thought he’d give OT a try. He felt hesitant to join at first, but after joining and attending classes for a period of time and seeing his A1C number drop to 5.9 percent at his next physical, Greg was sold on OT. He stopped with his personal trainer and trained at OT exclusively.

“I enjoy the variety of workouts and know that each class will be different. The coaches are great as well as the staff and it’s great to hear encouraging words coming from them.”

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Greg had a brutal first class as he climbed Orange Everest having his rear kicked in the process. Many members know how difficult that climb can be even for the seasoned OT member, but he persevered. He thanks Coach Persia for coaching him in his first class and AmyJae for reeling him in to join.

When he started OT, Greg wanted to simply survive classes and improve his cardio as his starting goals. He now wants to continue down the path of wellness in all aspects of his life from being there for his family to enjoying life to its fullest.

The primary force, which drives Greg to attend classes as often as he does, is his addiction to Orangetheory.

“I didn’t realize how addictive OTF is and the friendships I’ve made. OTF is not just a place to work out and classes to take, but rather, it’s a community and now an extension of my life. From the members to the staff and coaches, they have welcomed me into their lives and coming to class is not a chore but a privilege to be around great folks that push and motivate me,” said Greg.

 

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“The only thing I can say is thank you OTF for being who you are.”

Greg has trained here for nearly a year now and has reached many milestones along the way. Since joining, he no longer has to take medication for high cholesterol and hypertension. He has one medication left, which he also wants to no longer take – this would be the biggest accomplishment for him – and to be med free.

In regard to classes, he said, “I enjoy the variety of workouts and know that each class will be different. The coaches are great as well as the staff and it’s great to hear encouraging words coming from them.” Greg added that Kim, Nick and Royal are great additions to the coaching staff.

Greg loves everything about Orangetheory from endurance classes to the community – the members are welcoming and non-judgmental towards anyone regardless of how long they’ve trained here for. “The only thing I can say is thank you OTF for being who you are,” said Greg.

Keep Burning Greg.

A World of Improvement

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Aaron one year and 10 months of going to Orangetheory

A year makes a difference. Last year around this time we featured our member Aaron who had attended class at the studio since its opening. Fast forward to now and you wouldn’t believe how far he has come. He is fit and most importantly – healthy.

Aaron goes to class more often now ranging from five to six classes per week, which is impressive for anyone. Prior to ramping up his frequency of classes, he went to class three to four times per week. “I often say I replaced my addiction to food with an addiction to OTF. That is pretty accurate but really, I always want to be improving and that’s what we do,” said Aaron.

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Aaron nine months of going to Orangetheory

“I’m faster, stronger, I’m happier, more confident, the list goes on and on. I’d say I’m a pretty different person from who I was year ago – a much better one.”

In addition to changing how many times he comes to the studio, he has also changed up his nutrition. He recently transitioned out of the Keto diet and has recently hit his goal of losing 60 pounds. However, the last 20 pounds he has lost has not been easy to lose but he has triumphed through his tenacity, commitment and discipline. He’s now on a normal diet and getting most of his food from ReadyFitGo.

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Aaron before Orangetheory

Throughout the year, Aaron has seen improvements physically and mentally. “I’m faster, stronger, I’m happier, more confident, the list goes on and on. I’d say I’m a pretty different person from who I was year ago – a much better one,” said Aaron. When he first started Orangetheory, Aaron power walked and can now jog/run in class, which he didn’t feel confident about it in the past.

“Be consistent even if it’s small, you’ll see results. Fall in love with the process, it’s where all the fun happens.”

Aaron was recently invited to hike nine miles, which he completed without any issues where he would have hesitated about it in the past. He said, “I don’t have to let those physical challenges bar me from anything like the St. Jude5K we just did!” He’s now working on power lifting slowly improving on his bench press, squat and dead lift outside the studio, which Orangetheory helps with.

For those members who haven’t reached their fitness goals yet, Aaron says, “Be consistent even if it’s small, you’ll see results. Fall in love with the process, it’s where all the fun happens.” Wise words from a seasoned Orangetheory athlete – Keep Burning Aaron!

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Making Himself a Priority

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Members who attend classes regularly at Orangetheory (OT) Orenco Station like to arrive 10-15 minutes early to either stretch, socialize or both. However, there are some who arrive just a tad late scrambling to get into class. Paul is one of those who arrives to class just a minute or two after class has started, but in his defense, the class is at 5 a.m. We’ve all been there before.

Before joining the OT Orenco Station tribe, Paul ran a marathon in 2007 but took a long hiatus from training afterwards. Between work and raising two daughters, he found difficulty taking time for himself as a priority.

“I spent most of the first few classes out of breath and in the red zone. I was reminded of how it felt to be sore after a workout, and it felt great!”

Fast forward to 2016, Paul saw many new businesses going in at Orenco Station and was thrilled to see a workout facility slated to open. His curiosity led him to stop by and learn more about it eventually becoming a founding member of the studio.

Paul normally takes classes four to five times per week and he not only does it for the physical aspects, but also for his mental well-being. Before OT, he felt tired all the time and didn’t want to feel like that anymore. Paul said, “I was never really overweight, but my metabolism was slowing down and I was anxious to tone up my new-found belly.” He essentially wanted, as a goal, to not feel these effects.

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“I love that no two workouts are alike. OTF provides plenty of variety in the workouts to keep things fresh, and we get to challenge ourselves to reach our fitness goals.”

He recalls his first class during the first two trial weeks as intimidating like many others and he had a hard time keeping up. “I spent most of the first few classes out of breath and in the red zone. I was reminded of how it felt to be sore after a workout, and it felt great!” said Paul.

Now that Paul has trained for almost two years, he has new goals of gaining more muscle development and definition. He also wants to push himself by lifting heavier weights on the floor and increasing his push pace wattage on the rower. Since joining, Paul has reached the milestone of attending at least four classes per week at 5 a.m., which allows him to get his daughters to school on time.

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Most members have a particular type of workout they enjoy most – not Paul though. However, he likes when a class has the “tornado” format with its frequent switching. Paul stated, “I love that no two workouts are alike. OTF provides plenty of variety in the workouts to keep things fresh, and we get to challenge ourselves to reach our fitness goals.”

Paul enjoys the camaraderie and support given both by the coaches and other members. “There is always a smiling face behind the counter and the coaches take the time to make me feel welcome. So many of the founding members are still active and it’s so much easier to motivate myself in the morning when I know I’ll see my friends at the 5 a.m. class.”He also appreciates that OT Orenco Station celebrates its members with parties and events, which makes it feel more than just a boutique workout studio.

Keep Burning Paul!