Interview with Mia Shannon at Orangetheory Fitness Holly Springs

OTF_HollySprings(2)On April 23rd Orangetheory Fitness Holly Springs officially opened their doors to the public. If you haven’t tried an Orangetheory workout – you are missing out! Visit the location at 141 Grand Hill Place in the Holly Springs Town Center and try a hour-long class. Orangetheory Fitness (OTF) participants wear heart-rate-monitors as they go through interval training and short bursts of exercise designed to maximize the Orange Effect (achieved when ones heart rate reaches 85 percent of their maximum heart rate for 12 to 20 minutes), which adds extra ca loric burn for up to 36 hours after the workout. Participants can burn up to 1,000 calories per 60-minute class – one of the many reasons Orangetheory Fitness has been hailed on CNN and in The New York Times as a highly effective workout.

We recently chatted with co-owner, Mia Shannon, about the new location, what their goals are and where they hope to be in the future. When asked how she was introduced to OTF she shared that it all started over a year ago back in Orlando, FL where Mia and her husband, Tim, had been living with their family. She shared,”[Tim] happened to go by and see the orange bicycles they had out advertising the opening of a studio very close to us. He went in, signed us both up, we started doing the workouts and just completely fell in love with the concept.”

Thanks to a love for North Carolina and the timing of a franchise opportunity in Holly Springs the Shannon’s moved back in the summer of 2014. Mia said, “We knew we wanted to come back to this area, we had lived in Apex before and we just loved it. We love the weather, we love the small town feeling of everything and the schools are great. We’re originally from Florida but this area is just much nicer and a more temperate area for me.”


Prior to their grand opening, they had been running classes and received a tremendous response. While the maximum class size is 24 people, the ideal class size is around 20+. Class participants can expect a high energy, very motivating environment. “I think that’s one of the great things about this workout,” says Mia, “You get the best of a group workout, so you are motivated by the people around you, but you also have a fitness coach in there with you who is also motivating you and giving you that extra little boost and nudge to try a little bit harder, try a heavier weight or go a little faster.”

The unique environment has proven to be different from the typical gym where participants are leaving an OTF class with words of praise like ‘That was such a motivating environment instead of that intimidating/scary place’.

We do have a few OTF locations in the area but when asked what the future plans are for expansion Mia shared, “We would like to. Our original plan when we decided to do this was that we would do three or four. So we are hoping to open another one, I’d like it to be in Apex. Depending on how growth is in Fuquay, we may go into Fuquay-Varina. It depends on what happens in the next 6 months or so where the next location might be.” We’re keeping our fingers crossed for a Raleigh-based location!

OTF Holly Springs has 6 trainers and 7 people on the operations/sales side. Not only are the trainers nationally certified, they are also certified by OTF. “We had a training session before we started classes and they all had to pass the test,” explains Mia. While you are more than welcome to pay for OTF sessions class-by-class there are several perks of membership including the benefit of having a personal trainer available to you for consultations and a members only weight loss challenge which includes weigh-ins, consultations with the fitness coaches and guidance through the six weeks of the challenge.

OTF_HollySprings(3)They are running around 40 classes per week with potential to add on more as demand seeks it. Are you an early riser or want to get your workout in before work? Make sure to reserve your spot for the 5AM class before it fills up! “Believe it or not is very popular,” says Mia, “We do have showers here too so that’s an advantage. Some people come in, do their workout, take a shower, get dressed and go straight to work from here.”

Other than the plan to open several more locations in the area their goal is to grow their community of members and make them feel comfortable and cared for. Mia shares, “Everybody is so busy. Everybody’s time is so precious – when you can get an unbelievable workout in one hour and see results from it I think that’s probably our biggest goal – to offer that to as many people we can.” She continues, “We have members who need to lose a great deal of weight and we have members who are elite athletes all taking the same classes getting the benefits from the workout even though they are at completely different levels.”

We ended our conversation asking Mia for a little advice to future business owners in the area. She responded, “Do your research and be organized. Organization has been really key in making sure that we have tracked everything we may need and making sure our members feel like we know who they are and that we care. I even think that on the construction end of it and the starting of the businesses part of it – definitely organization has been huge. From the beginning don’t let things start to pile up.”

Thank you to Mia Shannon for taking the time to chat with us!

Orangetheory Fitness Holly Springs
141 Grand Hill Place
Holly Springs, NC 27540
(919) 267-1683
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