THE FIRM BODY SCULPTING SYSTEM 2: COMPLETE AEROBICS AND WEIGHT TRAINING

2003, $2.99, at Goodwill Superstore on San Fernando

First Impression: Blasts fat and reshapes your body like no other workout can!

Second Impression: A complete workout in less than one hour!

My goodness! I feel so amped up and energetic after reading the DVD jacket copy! I counted seven exclamation points on the back cover alone! How exciting! So what are you waiting for! All this for only $2.99! Why pay more!

Our FIRM instructor today is Emily. 

Like all FIRM instructors, her thick, syrupy accent is dripping with sweet tea, and her spray tan is unconvincing.  Emily insists that this “fun mix of total-body, muscle-shaping, fat-burning moves” is so efficient, that “it won’t waste a minute of your time.”

First, she tells us to get out our Fanny Lifter. Get out my what, now?

Turns out, a Fanny Lifter is just a low plastic stool that someone overcharges you for, because they have convinced you that there is something gravely wrong with your behind. To hear fitness coaches describe it, we are in the midst of a national crisis wherein everyone’s rear end is deflated, despondent, practically dragging on the ground like two limp sacks of meat. How different would the world be if our biggest worry was a saggy back porch problem?

Hold the phone. Turns out, this is just a step workout! It’s my least favorite kind of exercise, besides jumping rope. And rope climbing. Basically anything with ropes. Anyway.

As if to validate my feelings, the DVD starts glitching. Oh, no!  I might have to skip over the workout I don’t like, I exclaimed!

I take the disc out of the player and examine it. There’s no scratches, so I put it back in. It starts again from the beginning, and it won’t let me fast-forward through the segments that tell me “this DVD won’t waste a minute of your time!”

We do some bent over rows, as Emily puts it,  “to shape the muscle right along the braline.” 

Quick question: what if you wear a foundation garment like in olden times, would the braline be your entire body? Asking for a friend. No, I don’t wear a neck-to-knee girdle, don’t be silly. I’m not a time traveler from 1950. Why ever would you imply that?

This workout frequently alternates between using hand weights, an overpriced lead pipe, and the aforementioned Fanny Lifter. Each time we switch modes, Emily has us clear our space, only to move the equipment back, but remember, “this DVD won’t waste a minute of your time!”

Beginners are reminded to follow Suzanne, whose habitual expression looks like she has forgotten the dappled glow of sunlight.

Here she gives it everything she’s got, even though she’s not using any hand weights:

Let Suzanne serve as a shining example to us all!  Now scrunch up that face and get the most out of your workout!