The Soapbox: Step Right Up

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Brandi Chambless

Let’s be clear. I’ve already forgotten my New Year’s resolution.

Nevertheless, fresh starts always seem to be in order in the earlier months of the year. And that always seems to include fitness.

Being someone who remained faithfully fit last year, I did note some of the trends in fitness evolving like never before. And just like with the election of last year…folks just did not want more of the same. They enjoyed owning the rights to make their own decisions when it came to the workout routine, or anything for that matter.

When it comes to fitness, I suppose I have evolved with the best of ‘em, but there is always the one exception.

Let me put it this way: If you are born in Africa you are called an African. If your mother speaks Latvian, you are likely from Latvia. And, Dear Reader, if you were a teenager of the eighties, you probably wore a leotard, head band, leg warmers, and owned a Jane Fonda VHS.

For those young people just joining us, just google “VHS” and it will all be there.

During the late eighties Jane Fonda’s neon clad craze swept across American living rooms, to be followed by the introduction of step aerobics in 1989 by Gin Miller after a fateful knee injury that would become the very catalyst in propelling her to worldwide fame.

So, now that we have rounded the corner into a new year, I will proudly confess it. I still do step aerobics to this very day and it is the best exercise on the planet, even though it’s cheesy and incorporates an occasional pony.

Well, one such day early in the year, I was re-living my youth old-school style in the cardio suite all by my lonesome.

One of the greatest inventions known to man is the auxiliary cord that allows regular folks to utilize the studio sound system.

Here we go. Solo Step Master Class according to Me. Basic. Step Touch. L-Step. Repeater. I was on a roll.

As I was lost in the eighties, the worst thing in the world that could have possibly happened actually did happen. Three unsuspecting gym members walked in and quickly assembled a step.

Thinking I was an instructor, they just began stepping right along with me.

Having had my solitude invaded by the three strangers, one young female and two males, I thought there is going to be only one way to respond.

“Around the world!” I called. “Over the Top!” The beats were over 130 BPM. We were moving like lightning!

This went along for about an hour until I ended the class with a complimentary cool-down. Not only were their tongues hanging out, their brains were totally scrambled. I thanked them for coming and told them to come back again some time real soon.

Funny thing, they were never to be seen again. I wondered if I had caused a revolution to their resolution or if they just decided to go out and eat some ice cream instead. I wished I had a candid camera somewhere to have captured the whole shenanigan.

All joking aside, the older I get, I admittedly still enjoy pulling a prank as well as anyone. But I notice being just a little more sensible with those old January Resolutions. They may or may not make it to February and that is totally okay. For I’ve learned in trying to commit to a goal, I can truly accomplish something small each and every day that can be a life-changing act.

So…here’s to leotards and headbands forever!


Read Brandi’s column each month in The Cross Timbers Gazette.

About The Author

Brandi Chambless

Read Brandi's column each month in The Cross Timbers Gazette newspaper.

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