Richard Simmons celebrated his 62nd birthday this year. Most people are ready to retire by that age, and Richard Simmons is one of the few who could easily afford to. What keeps him working is his flamboyant energy and love for his fans. I realize why he’s the butt of so many jokes, but let’s be realistic. A man of that caliber deserves a little bit of respect. I personally find his enthusiasm to be over the top, but for the millions of people he has inspired to lose weight, he is the perfect motivator. Although he’s not often seen in the spotlight anymore, he’s still a big presence in the industry today running his empire behind the scenes.
On our journey to fitness, we all must take slightly different paths. Personality type, age, lifestyle and genetics will inevitably affect which path you take. Not everyone responds well to the kick-ass persona of fitness gurus like Jillian Michaels. Some people just want to be told that they are beautiful and that they can do it. Lots of smiling and positive reinforcement works wonders for motivating the masses.
Richard Simmons has provided nothing but enthusiasm, affirmation, hope and genuine happiness since he opened Slimmons Studio in 1974. It’s been 36 years, and his entirely unique approach to fitness training is still attracting followers. Slimmons Studio is a strong component of the Los Angeles aerobics scene and Simmons still actively teaches motivational fitness classes there. He has also recently released his 58th and 59th fitness videos, Sweatin’ to the Oldies 5 and Tonin’ to the Oldies. On his website, RichardSimmons.com, Simmons hosts a Q and A column each week. He also actively campaigns for higher standards of nutrition at schools.
Richard Simmons has stood the test of time, remaining relevant in the fitness industry despite the shift to suck-it-up, in-your-face, make-you-cry direction it has taken. Sometimes, the greatest motivator is a curly haired man in sparkly shorts telling you that you are strong and beautiful.
September 23rd, 2010