This is a problem millions of Americans face, and have faced for the last few decades. The birth of the fitness craze as we know it goes back to the 80s, and can be traced back to this week's Tuesday's Forgotten TV, The 20 Minute Workout.
The 20 Minute Workout was a series produced in part by a favorite of Me and You blog entries past, Nelvana--yes, the animation studio! It aired on the CityTV group of Canadian stations and sold into syndication in US markets. It debuted in the fall of 1983 and was a big success. It aired original episodes until the spring of 1985 and aired in reruns for a few seasons afterwards.
The show featured a different host on each day of the workweek who led the other instructors in various high-impact aerobic exercises. Although the exercises were legitimate, it can't be denied that the appeal of the series for many male audience members was to watch the ladies in their workout clothes, a fact which the producers were not only aware of, but counted on.
Before the Shake Weight, there was The 20 Minute Workout.
The series was a spin-off of a successful video collection of workouts released in Canada, clips of which aired as interstitial programming on the Showtime cable channel in 1982. This series, along with Jane Fonda's never-ending series of workout videos, created the billion dollar fitness industry that is still very prevalent today.
If you're up to the challenge, here is one of the workouts. Now sweat!
For more forgotten audio and video, check out Sweet Freedom by Todd Mason. Thanks!