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3 Reasons We Love Orange Theory and Other HIIT Trends

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The CrossFit affiliate owners community is relatively small (at least if just in the US).  And when someone or something “threatens” that which we have worked so hard to create from nothing, we all find out about it.

Recently bootcamps and mega studios have been running specific targeted ads with phrases like “CrossFit style” workout, or something along those lines and a lot of affiliate owners are getting pretty butt-hurt about it.

My philosophy has always been of a different approach.

3 Reasons We Love Orange Theory and Other HIIT Trends
by: Brian Alexander, CrossFit Illumine

When it comes to health and fitness we are happy when someone makes the choice to get off the couch and make some positive changes in their lives. That happiness isn’t dependent on them signing up with us.  We believe that people will seek us out when they are ready for serious change. We have a constant influx of clients who are current members at OTF and other HIIT gyms ready for something more. They are ready for what is next.

We may be unique in the sense that we as a business have an abundance mindset.  The 5 mile radius of opportunity is far too big to fight over the same clients. We apply the same thinking to franchises like Orangetheory Fitness and other HIIT programs which we see growing in popularity across North America. These gyms and systems are fantastic for CrossFit, and here are three reasons why we love them:

1. They are introducing masses of people to high-intensity interval training. Their marketing machine is effective at getting more people off of the couch and through their doors because they have made HIIT trendy, sexy and non-threatening. The “jump” to CrossFit (which we know isn’t a jump at all, but bear with me here) looks a lot more manageable after an athlete has some experience with another methodology.

2. These gyms have introduced a higher price point to the market at about $30/class. CrossFit used to boast the most expensive price tag in the group fitness category, but now, millions of people have been conditioned to see the value in paying $150-$250/month to pursue (or in our case, actually achieve) their fitness goals.

3. There is a built-in limitation and proverbial ceiling to their fitness precisely because they are replicable: athletes often reach a plateau with their results or experience monotony and boredom. We often hear how well P90x and Insanity work the first time, but on the second or third time through the tapes, people are less inclined to push themselves as hard because they know what’s coming. The mental stimulation and novelty have worn off, leaving them looking for the next fitness movement to try.

There is no need to look at Orangetheory, HIIT Gym, Bodytek or even P90X as competition at all. Instead, they’re excellent starting points for all of those 409,000 couch-bound potential CrossFitters within our five-mile radius. You can only run on a treadmill so many times, row 500m so many times, and do so many burpees before you begin to ask yourself if this is the rest of your fitness life. We are the next logical step. We are the “What’s next?”

CrossFit is and has always been very grass-roots. No high-budget marketing campaigns, fancy equipment, saunas or jacuzzis. What we do have are good people who provide a platform for their clients to achieve some amazing results through physical preparedness and functional fitness. People who are ready to find us will do so at the right time; and we will be ready as their final fitness destination.

Enter CrossFit Big Dane…

Illumine Fitness has a no sweat intro to first identify what the client’s goal is, and then prescribes the best program for the client. No round pegs in square holes… just consulting with our clients and helping them choose the best path of the many we have to offer.


-Classic “CrossFit” with technical movements (Olympic Lifts & Gymnastics) and strength to improve performance.

-CrossFit Endurance: a specialty course focused on improving the aerobic capacity of that of its participants using the CrossFit methodology.

-Hybrid: a combination of group classes and personal training to help a client meet their goals and train in an environment they are comfortable in.

-Pop up clinics: 1 day clinics from handstand progressions to butterfly kipping to prepping for the open.

There is no one path for everyone. Each individual client has different needs and different goals.

If you are a member of one of the gyms above and looking for the “What’s next”, it may be time we sit down, talk about your specific goals and help you continue on your health and fitness journey, as your fitness and nutrition partner for life.