Out And Back And Up And Down

Late this afternoon I saw a link from Amy in my comments, so of course I clicked on it because THIS, THIS IS WHAT I DO, I CLICK ON MANY, MANY LINKS ALL THE LIVELONG DAY.

And make no mistake: Amy’s link was special. Memorable. Precious to my heart. I’m fairly certain that it has changed my life forever.



That’s the magic of YouTube, my friends. You’re plodding along through your daily routine, and then BOOM! The whole day is transformed just because someone who goes by the name “resetcounter” was kind enough to upload some obscure celebrity fitness videos.

I mean, you really can’t find this kind of quality footage in stores anymore. And you know what? That’s a crying shame. Because who needs Zumba when there’s Debbie Reynolds showing us how to BREAK IT DOWN while singing impromptu medleys? When there’s Mary Hart sporting some crispy bangs and opting to wear socks in addition to her tights?

Or when there’s Dixie Carter (God rest her soul) to show us how to, you know, breathe?

So what do you say, girls? Should we got put on our (belted!) leotards, high top Reeboks, sassy neon headbands and feel the burn?

No? Not so much?

I totally get it. I personally haven’t worn a leotard since 1987.

And I think it’s probably best if we keep it that way.

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  1. Do It Debbie’s Way has just fast-tracked its way to the depths of my heart.

    There is too much goodness to be described, but HIGH ON MY LIST is the choker that perfectly matches her leotard. The choker she wears while doing all those strenuous leg lifts.

  2. I have been searching, and searching, and searching for an exercise video that would be compatible with my morning routine of two quaaludes washed down with a pint of gin. THANK YOU!!!

  3. I’ve always loved watching Dallas vs the current tv series. There’s something about the old vs new :)

  4. Amy in Italy says:

    There are no words…except. Thank you Amy and BooMama.

  5. Susan in Indiana says:

    What a fun way to start the day!! Too funny! I am a Jazzercise instructor in Indiana and can tell you in 40 years, we’ve come a LONG WAY baby!! You can burn up to 600 calories in one class so we’ve definitely picked up the pace… and lost the leggings and leotards, thank goodness! :-) Thanks for the smiles!!

  6. Oh my. Shelly Winters is a hoot! And the jazzercise set to Arthur’s Theme? I can tell you I took an aerobics class in 1984 (when I got tired of Jane Fonda) and the instructor loved the Footloose soundtrack. She used every single song for some routine every day I was there. It ruined that soundtrack for me. Now when I hear any of those songs I’m back in aerobics class.

    And is it just me or did Denise Austin take lessons from that last lady on how to speak while leading exercise? Try closing your eyes while listening. Doesn’t that sound just like Denise?!

  7. Oh my goodness this clips bring back FLOODS of wonderful childhood memories of my mom doing videos like this! I so desperately wanted to look like that that when someone told me the 90’s where back I went and bought some neon, a floral romper and got my bangs cut!

  8. Ugh, guess I should go take off my leotard.

  9. Oh.my.word. Thank you, Boo Mama….thank you.

  10. Please, please tell me you have seen these amazing workout videos designed to help Japanese women learn English:


  11. Thank you, thank you for the smile this morning! I actually clicked on all of them. And can I say I soooo wanted my hair to be just like Mary Hart’s when I was in high school. I can’t tell you how many hours, hot rollers, and hair gel went into my hair during those four years!

  12. CindyDavis says:

    Speaking OF Ms. Debbie Reynolds…did you happen to catch her on So You Think You Can Dance last night as guest judge. Now THAT was some entertaining television.

  13. LOVE. I used to do my mom’s old Jazzercise videotapes when I was in high school (I think I just lost all my cool points!) and this post made me think of that lady bouncing around in her bumblebee leotard singing “Wake me up before you go-go”. Sigh. Good times.

  14. THANK YOU! brings back memories of my mom’s work outs and all of the grapefruit we used to eat!

  15. OH my goodness! These videos are too much. I just texted my mom to tell her to read your blog today because I’m pretty sure she may have owned each and every one of those and I remember her all decked out in her belted unitard DAILY exercising to those videos! (They must have worked though because she was always fit!)

  16. That was the BEST! i would totally work out with Debbie Reynolds!

  17. Jennifer says:

    Once after church, I asked our church pianist (and very good friend) if he knew “Arthur’s Theme.” I mean, if you’re a guy sitting at a baby grand, you must know such things. And, I couldn’t believe my ears, the talented guy sounded it out right then and there in the sanctuary. I think the lovely sounds also pleased the Lord.

    And I can’t say enough good things about 80’s aerobics. I remember asking my mom, at age 6, if she could wake me up by 6:40 so I could get in my 20-minute workout. I caught a glimpse of “20-Minute Workout” once when I was up early sick, and I was sold on it. I mean, all of those leotards in those jewel tones?? And the headbands and clean, white background, and the cameras that circled around and around the women while they did their cool down breathing?? Amazing.

    Thanks for sharing these delicious links. And for you: http://www.hulu.com/watch/4192/saturday-night-live-snl-digital-short-body-fuzion.

  18. I always smile when I come here : ) I’m going to a reunion this weekend…staff from a summer camp I worked in 30 years ago…Its flashback Thursday for sure!

  19. i remember when i could move well enough to feel the burn…

  20. Thank you, Boomama, for the shout out! I’m so glad others find it funny because sometimes I worry that I’m crying from laughter and there are crickets chirping around me from others who feel…not so much.

    Between the sudden grabbing of her lady parts to the “handsome man!” at the end, it just makes me laugh every singe time.

    All the best….
    Amy B.

  21. Oh. My. I would be hard pressed to pick a favorite. Were Debbie and Shelly drunk?? When people wax nostalgic about the good old days, I don’t think leotards enter into the equation.

  22. I’ll have you know that I had a hair appointment today and my hairstylist Rick and I discussed the Debbie Reynolds exercise video and it brought me much joy.

  23. So my question is, 25 years from now will our daughters be posting footage (or whatever the equivalent will be in that future world) and waxing on about how hysterically funny Jillian Michaels was with her rock hard abs, screaming at their mothers on the “30 Day Shred”, fondly remembering all the rice milk and mangoes they had to eat back in 2011? Somehow, it just doesn’t feel like it will hold the same allure as Debbie’s kicky little choker and Mary’s neon leotard…

  24. You know what that tells me, we women have been worrying to long about our bods. I remember watching Debbie Reynolds as a kid thinking how beautiful she was.
    Matter of fact I thought all the those women were perfect.
    Thanks for the memory,

  25. Who remembers the 20 Minute Workout? legwarmers and all!
    I actually lost weight and thought the program was doable—back in the day. I’m thinking of cranking it up on my computer and trying it again—crash fitness frenzy before the wedding rolls around in 5 weeks. but where are my legwarmers??

  26. Joelle @goldenchances says:

    I would strongly caution against using the Dixie Carter breathing method, because that is precisely the breathing technique my dog uses when she needs to throws up. On the other hand, I must say that the Mary Hart video is PURE JOY. Just **PURE JOY**! Words cannot adequately describe the heights of my joy when watching that. 24 carat quotes. Thank you, BooMama!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  27. I used to watch “Sit and Be Fit”, an exercise program for elderly people. Also pure gold.

  28. Oh! ZMy favorite thing about the Debbie Reynolds one is how often she says, “I HATE THIS! I HATE EXERCISE!” So refreshing! And much better than a skinny, perky, bouncy blonde who never sweats or loses her breath, acting like exercise is just as wonderful as a chocolate banana shake from Sonic!

  29. jazzercise – let’s show those jazz hands girls! Forever in Blue Jeans by Neil Diamond was my favorite jazzercise workout – ahh those were the days – when I thought I could ever tighten my stomach and lift my butt – yep – good old days indeed (I’m MUCH older than you BTW)

  30. Priceless!! Thank you for sharing these priceless 80’s memories :)!

  31. When we all get to Heaven, I want to belong to Debbie’s gym. She’s my new favorite.