Orangetheory Fitness enters Danbury market

September 8, 2017 GMT

DANBURY — The fastest-growing fitness franchise in the U.S. has opened a location on Eagle Road.

Orangetheory Fitness opened Sept. 1 in Danbury by owners Tara Costa, Matt Long and Lori Rung. The franchise also has locations in Norwalk, Westport, Fairfield, Shelton and Milford. The Danbury center is the only one owned by Costa, Long and Rung, although they own the rights to two others and are scouting locations.

Costa, from Bethpage, N.Y., is known by many from her 2009 appearance on the NBC show “The Biggest Loser” on which she lost 155 pounds and finished as the runner-up.


Long is a former New York City firefighter who was hit and dragged by a bus while riding his bike to work in 2005. He was given little chance to survive, but eventually returned to top athletic form. He wrote the book “The Long Run: A New York City Firefighter’s Triumphant Comeback from Crash Victim to Elite Athlete,” about the experience.

Founded seven years ago, Orangetheory Fitness is the fastest-growing fitness franchise in the U.S. and 11th overall, according to Entrepreneur magazine.

“We’ve taken the guesswork out of it,” Nick Cooper, studio manager of the Danbury location, said. “All you have to do is get your butt here. We take care of the rest. We’ve created, researched and tested the workouts.”

Orangetheory Fitness offers 60-minute classes only — 30 minutes of cardio and 30 minutes of strength — but the interval workouts are designed for all ages and abilities as the individual’s heart rate determines the intensity.

Each participant in a class wears a heart monitor and their heart rate is displayed on a screen so the trainer can instruct individuals to work harder or scale back. The heart rates are color-coded with orange being the optimum range, hence the name of the business.

“Everybody is different so the heart-rate zones and goals are different,” Cooper said. “It’s all at your own pace based on your own heart-rate zone.”

Staying in the orange zone for at least 12 minutes allows participants to continue to burn calories long after the workout ends, a state known as excess post-exercise oxygen consumption, or EPOC.

“It’s research-driven and technology-backed. It’s not a typical workout,” Cooper said. “Certified personal trainers deliver the process, but doctors create it.”

Memberships at Orangetheory Fitness run month to month and there are no signup or cancellation fees.


Cooper said much of the equipment used for the workouts is exclusive to Orangetheory Fitness. The treadmills have “four inches of bounce” to alleviate pressure on the users’ joints and back. The WaterRower machines utilize a water tank and flywheel to more closely resemble rowing on the water than traditional machines.

“We don’t have tanning beds and we don’t have shake bars,” Cooper said. “Give us a 60-minute window and then you can get back to your busy lives.”

To reach Orangetheory Fitness in Danbury, call 203-409-2020.

The writer may be reached at cbosak@hearstmediact.com; 203-731-3338