I remember Richard Simmons from when I was wee. He was charismatic and dedicated to helping people back then, and he still is. His class was jam packed and people love him. It's almost a religious experience. Yesterday he was made up in gold face paint and wore a pharaoh hood, so I guess it was religious.
There are people of all shapes and sizes and all fitness levels in his class. We did a half hour of cardio dance extravaganza, fifteen minutes of weight training (which I forgot how much I enjoyed weight training outside of a gym setting), and fifteen minutes of crunches and push-ups. Sphinx Simmons ended class with a brief word of encouragement to see the best in yourself and others. He finishes every class by staying for photos with anyone who took the class. Be patient as you wait because he will spend the same quality time posing cleverly with you, briefly chatting and kissing you on the cheek that he does with everyone else.
This class was absolutely magical for two reasons (besides his icon status):
1) This was the most fun I've had in an aerobics and/or dance class in a really long time. I focus on learning and perfecting my technique in most classes, and I know I make concentration face. Even as I reached for my inhaler in this class, I had a huge smile on my face.
2) Richard's mother was a showgirl. I told him I was a burlesque dancer as I failed to sneak to the restroom during his earlier class and he caught me. After class he told me and Evie how his mother was a showgirl in New Orleans back in the day, four foot six and managing five foot feather fans. Wow. I'm going to have to research this woman!
If you ever have the opportunity, please take a class with Richard Simmons. You will absolutely not regret it. He is a delightful man and his class is tons of fun.
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