The following was told to me by a forty-something physician who needs his own blog (we’ll call him Trent) and is shared with his permission:
So I had the afternoon off and a free trial for a gym called Orange Theory Fitness and decided to try it out. It is a group class and they put a heart rate monitor on you. Your pulse shows up on a giant big screen monitor with your name and corresponds to a color. Starts with grey (basically means they think you have your thumb up your ass whistling Dixie), blue means you need to try harder, orange is perfect range of 75 to 90% of max (hence the name Orange Theory) and red means to ease back a bit. You do various weight lifting routines mixed with cardio on treadmill and rowing. It was a very intense workout.
There were 30 or so people in the class, mostly 20 something hot girls and gay guys (not that there is anything wrong with that, it is just who was there).
The “teacher” was a 20-something blond, perky typical fitness instructor with a microphone to speak to the class and giant fake boobs. Every five minutes she looks at the big board and praises the oranges by name. I am remaining grey so I push it.
I am outrunning and outlifting all these 20 somethings!
But the instructor is focused only on the big board. Now she praises the oranges but singles out the greys. “Come on, Trent, you’re not going to get better unless you push it. You can do it.” Finally she comes over to me and asks why I am not trying. She fails to notice the profuse sweating and the fact that my treadmill is going faster than anyone else’s. I tell her while panting that I am on a beta blocker* and that limits my heart rate. “Great job Suzie, Great job Amy,……….” continues and doesn’t seem interested.
After the class she tells me that I struggled because it was my first time to do the class. She is sure I will do better next time. I again mention the beta-blocker. She cuts me off and says, “You might want to see a doctor.” I shake my head and leave.
*Beta Blockers are a class of blood pressure medication that slows the heart rate.