Time Travel II (2017-1985)

I had a lot fun writing the blog Time Travel (1985-2017) I decided to write part II.  Today I go back in time to my early years in the land of Bro’s,Aerobic Thongs,Short Shorts and no Bosu’s.


     A trip back to 1985 would be a trip in more than once sense.

Muscle and Fitness was one of the major sources of information.
For better or worse, its sales eclipsed many other magazines of the era.


A first generation pull-over machine.  I have to admit I rather miss this unit.

I would realize how Machine focused things were back then, even in gyms with well equipped free-weight sections. I would further recall how BIG some of those machines were even by todays standard.


Nautilus is still in business.

SIDENOTE: I’m not a heavy machine user in most of my programming. That said, there are a few items from 1985 I would love to bring back.

For cardio (lol) there were largely only two choices: The treadmill or the bike. The elliptical,recumbent bike and steppers hadn’t come out yet and the arm and floor bikes were still in the Physical Therapy worlds. Today there are a multitude of options including my favorite “lift the weight faster.”


The Aerobics boom had started thanks largely to the movie “Perfect.” In turn, this brought us the widely popular but short lived aerobics workout thong.

SIDENOTE: Aerobics history would repeat itself in 2013 when a young lady asked me to scare away a notorious slow blinking window fogger from staring at the ladies butts in Zumba Class. This event may have been the origin story of the Belligerent Bro.


Thanks to Rocky IV, interest in minimalist training began a slow comeback, and it didn’t require one to move to Russia to gain the benefits.


Long before Original Strength, Ground Force Method,Ido Portal or Training for Warriors featured crawling methods, Rocky IV was putting in work.


Men’s gym shorts were pretty darn short. It only took one bad 1985 gym experience for me to realize the importance of selecting spotters based on both competence AND the wearing of track pants or longer shorts to spot me during Bench Presses.

A lot equipment I currently use would be nowhere to be found: The Concept II Rower,
Assault/Airdyne Bikes, Kettlebells,Indian Clubs,Maces,Safety Squat Bars,Buffalo/Duffalo Bars,Earthquake Bars,Reverse Hyper machines,TRX,Prowlers,Plyo Boxes,Speed Ropes and resistance bands were either considered outdated relics or hadn’t been invented or improved upon yet.


Neither had the Bosu Ball, but I don’t give a crap about that.  Really, where does the laughs end and tears begin with this gem?


I would LOVE to have the Planet Fitness Lunk Alarm pulled on me…. but I’ve been refused entry when attempting to get a day pass.  Yes, I was carrying a gallon jug,wearing a tank top and do tend to grunt during lifts.

It would be another seven years before the seeds of what would become Planet Fitness sprouted, and another few more years before the monthly bagel and pizza days became frequent comedy material.  Matter of fact, I believe my entry was refused on a Pizza day.

There were very few NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialists or Certified Personal Trainers, making the odds of finding one very difficult.


The Idea Foundation had formed in 1985, later changing its name to the American Council on Exercise…which I feel was a good idea as the former sounds really nerdy.


It would another 2 years before NASM was formed, and despite being founded in the mid-50’s, it would be another 20 years before an ACSM CPT would show up…


I still own the 3rd Editions of ACSM and ACE’s texts as well as NASM’s 4th and NSCA’s 2nd CPT and 3rd CSCS books.  It’s not considered hoarding when it comes to books.


Because crash weight gains sound like a great idea.

Protein supplements tasted like t̶o̶t̶a̶l̶ ̶c̶r̶a̶p̶ chalk,but it was the secret sauce to how Bro’s got their gains. Creatine Monohydrate was not to make a significant appearance for another 7 years (1992 Olympics) and Amino Acid supplements were literally zoo sized pills.

1985 was a different world, and I’m very happy to have been part of it.


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