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Episode 33 – Train 180

On this episode of The NE Spahtens Show, Paul talks to Dave Hooper – owner and operator of Train 180 in Nashua NH.

Train 180 have a gorgeous facility with a whole host of obstacles and training tools for you to play with – a full schedule of classes and a new open gym schedule. New England Spahtens wearing team gear get a discount on the drop in rates – call ahead for information.

Learn more about Train 180:


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OCR Training at Train 180 LLC

Train 180 logo Train180 is a functional fitness facility located in Nashua, NH.

Its owned by certified personal trainer, fellow Spahten, and OCR enthusiast Dave Hooper. They are also an official training facility for the #racelocal Grand Prix.

Train180 opened way back in the early years of OCR in 2011, and is located in an old mill and factory section of the city. Though a little hard to find, it’s an ideal space for his setup. According to Dave, “‘Train180’ comes from the idea of taking someone’s fitness in a completely different direction from what they have been accustomed to. A 180 degree turn if you will. Getting them off machines, out of their comfort zone, and into something new.” This philosophy is apparent as soon as you walk in, as there is only a small section of cardio machines and free weights, and the majority of the large space is open and full of functional equipment and obstacles… an OCR addict’s playground!

At Train180 you can find almost all of the most common obstacles, including 3 different walls, monkey bars, tarzan swings, tire drag and hoists, sloshpipes, traverse wall, rope climbs, heavy jump ropes and heavy carries. They did a great job utilizing the space and features of the old factory, which added a nice, rugged feel to the facility. Train180 offers personal and group training, open gym time (with or without a supplied workout), and a few OCR specific classes. They also put on a timed course inside their facility, and in nicer weather incorporate nearby trails.
Along with a fellow Spahten, I attended their Saturday, 10:30am OCR class. After a quick warmup, we were set up at different obstacles to begin a rotation. With most stations having duplicate obstacles there wasn’t much back up, despite a pretty good turnout. Our workout consisted of most of the obstacles mentioned along with a few more. Where the workout really shined was in its setup. After completing every third obstacle we were forced to tackle a wall, and interspersed throughout were cardio intensive obstacles, including treadmill, jumprope, and stairs. This is a great way to structure a workout, as it closely mimics the race conditions of cardio-obstacle-cardio.

10999810_813228548726392_4218659354728181888_nConsistent workouts like this should help to improve times for short distance races, per the principle of specificity. Meaning if you want to get better at racing, then at least part of your training should closely mimic, or even match, the specifics of what you are training for (i.e. run to get better at running). To maximize the benefit of this workout, however, does require at least minimal proficiency at the obstacles. Too much time spent on obstacles you aren’t ready for can sabotage the workout. Fortunately, of the obstacles we worked that day, only really the wall, monkey bars, traverse wall and rope climb required much specific skill, which still left about 10 other obstacles and exercises; more than enough to get in a great, effective workout. Perfect for simulating race conditions and getting in practice time on obstacles.

Train180 is an awesome OCR facility with great options for us enthusiasts, including OCR classes, trail runs, mock races and personal training. Perfect for an everyday facility for those who live nearby or just a day trip for those who don’t. Dave is also kind enough to hook up fellow New England Spahtens with a discount! (more information)

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Review – Train 180, NH

Editors note: Train 180 popped up on our radar recently, and we sent a couple of people along to check them out. They’re the real deal, and provide a great OCR facility for Nashua, NH region residents. Even better, the owner, David Hooper is a New England Spahten himself, and is offering a drop in price for the community of $12.

Check them out!

train180* From: Maureen MacGregor

* Event Details
603-494-3428 |

I first heard about Train180 from a fellow NES FB post stating he had just figured out how to climb the rope. After a series of emails and phone calls I scheduled a personal training session at Train180 meeting with the owner, Dave Hooper. Dave has been a personal trainer for several years now with an extensive knowledge of the OCR world. The location is perfect; the training area is in the old mill buildings with Mine Falls Park in back which provides for endless opportunities for trail running. The gym has nice high ceilings to hang those ropes from and has a large open feel to it.


Dave runs OCR small group workouts (usually 1-4 people) on Tuesday evenings and Saturday morning with a full 5K obstacle style training are at the end of the month. He also does personal 1:1 training and small groups for TRX, tabata, and total body. My focus was on the OCR training for my time there.

Dave was great with his expertise thrown in with an easy going demeanor. He was able to tailor the workout session individually for each group member while keeping our motivation up for the whole session. His partner in crime Bobby Bonia puts quite a bit of effort into the mock races.

Here’s a sample breakdown of our Obstacle session:

Warm up: 10 burpees
Weighted tire and TRX straps squat rows and pulls down the length of the gym
15 muscle ups using the extended wood plank on his 6ish foot wall.
Hobie Hops up 2 split flights of stairs.
Quick run around the building
Spear throw time! We got 2 practice throws and 2 real throws. Penalties varied between 5-15 burps each depending on your fitness level.
Burlap bag filled with pebbles going up these stairs again. Oh, did I mention the bag had to be overhead with arms extended?
Climb the rope and ring the bell. He has both a knotted and regular rope.
Bear crawl along length of the gym

6ft & 8 ft wall
tires to flip/pull/jump on
monkey bars
TRX straps
medicine balls
kettle bells
pull up bars
traverse wall along the full length of the gym
3 levels of boxes for jumps
and he’s hoping to add more as time goes on.

This coming Saturday 7/26/14 he is even specializing in spear throwing to help save us 30 burpees in Amesbury.

Price: Individual 1/2 hour session: $25
2 people: $15 each
3+: $12 each

Located practically in my backyard.
OCR focus on training. Note: he also has other types of training available but I wasn’t focused on those
2 different set training days Tues/Saturday
Personal training available
Price-plus he says he will give a NES discount.
Dave is very flexible, nice guy who loves the OCR world.

No air conditioning; just a fan. But thankfully the high ceilings helped out with that and he makes sure you drink enough water.
No mud
Sore muscles.

In all, a great local training gym for Northern Mass/Southern NH.

* Rating