The 45 (!) year-old Oscar-winning actress shows off her perfect form in a super-cute red & white bikini top and bottom (she brought it to the shoot!) that is reminiscent of the 1940's glam era of Hollywood. Marisa released her own workout DVD that just came out: Marisa Tomei Core & Curves DVD and Kit.
What Are Marisa's "Pleasure Principles?"
(Does anyone else remember Janet Jackson's "The Pleasure Principle?" Loved that song! Anyway, back to our cover model.)
Here are just a few of the reasons why Marisa is gorgeous, healthy and content.
Every morning she "detoxes" with a cup of hot water and lemon (yawn) and then follows it with a boiled egg drizzled with olive oil (now we're talking!)
On the weekends you can find her at the local farmers market with her delish boyfriend Logan Marshall-Green.
Marisa loves to cut a rug and move to music and recently started a "devotional dance and body movement" class in her hometown of Los Angeles.
What is the "Workout That Changed Her Body?"
Marisa Tomei whittles her waist with help from ahula hoop. Which is funny to me because lately I have been hearing about the great workout hula hoops offer. Never learned how to hula hoop growing up and I always feel stupid when I try but maybe it is time to go outside my comfort zone and give it a whirl. This really looks kind of fun! See!
What Else is in the August Shape?
Shape really amps up the celebrity coverage in this issue. In addition to the lovely Tomei we also learn the healthy habits of these famous babes:
Dara "Mother-F***in'" Torres:
The Olympic goddess (43!) offers some of her favorite moves for getting a strong and sturdy core. I plan to use quite a few of these for personal training and my core classes. Ch-ch-check it out.
And in case you need some inspiration, this is Dara's "Got Milk" ad. Yowza!
Twilight's Ashely Greene "Fighter" Training:
Actress Ashley Greene (who prefers to be toned rather than "super skinny," love hearing that!) had to get into vampire-fighting shape to film her latest "Twilight" film Eclipse. Unless she actually played a vampire and therefore had to get into fighting-vampire shape.
Okay, I admit it--I have NO idea what these books or movies are about. I just like to watch cute 20-somethings get into fights and kiss in the movies--so sue me! Anyhoo, here are some of Ashley's butt-kicking moves you can try for yourself.
Finally, We Have the Legendary Aerobic Superstar Kathy Smith-- 58 Years-Old People!
Kathy gives her tips for getting toned while chilling out. First here is her official site. Second here is a photo of her in a yoga pose.
Holy shit balls! She looks amazing. Now do you feel inspired to get off your duff and workout? Moving on...
What Else is in This Month's Shape?
New & Improved Hair Removal:
Excellent tips on epilating like a champ. I am thinking of heading to Amazon.com to buy more beauty gadgets. Like these!
And How About Some Lowfat Cheeses?
This page totally hits my sweet spot (so to speak.) I would walk a mile in this sweaty, hot mess we call New York City weather for a decent slice of cheese. Now I know where to get the low-cal variety! Just need a glass of wine to make this story complete...
The Rest of the Best of the August Shape:
"5 Things I Wish I Knew....Then":Dr. Kay Kirkpatrick is a physician who had been in practice for over 30 years when she learned of a blockage in her arteries at the age of 55. Dr. Kirkpatrick gives us the advice she wishes had be given when she was younger. Such as you only have to the age of 35 to build bones (yikes!), a junk food diet will come back to haunt you (true,) and learning to take time for yourself will help keep your priorities straight amen!)
"What to Drink After Your Workout": The editors of Shape pick their choices for post-sweating thirst quenching. I say yes to the coconut water!
"15 Best Foods for Women": What you need to chow down on for essential health in your 20s, 30s and 40s. Nom nom, now I am hungry.
"What I Love About Being My Age": More celebrities! Screen stars Deborah Ann Woll (HBO's True Blood,) Elizabeth Reaser (Twilight,) and Hope Davis (HBO's The Special Relationship) talk about their favorite beauty tips and why they appreciate the age they are in now. Nice!
Plus we have the usual beauty, fashion, diet, sex and lifestyle advice we have some to count on in this magazine. I say bring this one to the beach (or by the pool) and you will be sure to enjoy a good read.
Overall Grade: B! Great information for the most part but points were taken off because the fashion and shopping pages were a little dry. Normally I want to rip them out and buy everything. Maybe next month?
See you in September Shape!
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(AKA Step Aerobics for Cher Fans, Goths, and Those Who Wear All-Black Leotards)
Today we take a step back to 1991 (19 years ago-can you believe it?) and happen upon the magnificence that is Cher (born Cherilyn Sarkision) who according to her many accomplishments listed on Wikipedia has sold over 200 million copies of her music over the last 40 years. Wow and wow!
Cher was known for her daring sense of style throughout most of her career and had a long, lanky figure to die for. So it makes sense that she would have been a fitness buff in order to show off her belly and butt cheeks (yes, I am showing that video too!)
So in 1991 our fair Cher released a series of workout videos including CherFitness: A New Attitude which is what we will check out today. Overall the routines are safe and the production values are pretty nice considering the crapitude that is featured in far too many of these slap-dash celebrity videos that have been introduced to the public over the years. (Check out my You Tube Channel for more! BrooklynFitChick1)
Cher fills the room with her friends (not a gypsy, tramp or thief in sight however,) has recognizable songs playing in the background (though I am not a big fan of bland covers,) and keeps the action moving the whole time so you won't get bored. But most of all I love the all-black leotards and scrunchy socks on display here. Yes she is doing a step routine but she is still edgy and don't you forget it!
So please enjoy this little snippet from Body Confidence:
Bridget Moynihan who has had several memorable roles in film and television including Sex & The City (Big's wife who got screwed on the plot line IMO,) John Cusack's ill-fated fiancee in Serendipity, and the wife of John Corbett in the new family-friendly flick Ramona & Beezus. Bridget is beautiful, sweet and a red-hot single mom to three year-old John Edward Thomas Moynihan. So what's her issue? Oh right, her boyfriend Tom Brady (heard of him?) went right into a relationship with uber, leggy supermodel Gisele Bundchen just one month after they broke up. Grrrr. (This is around the time she found out she was pregnant--wow!)
But Bridget has decided to take the high road and look at life as a series of lessons to be learned and she shares some of them with SELF. Including:
"Bitching Doesn't Help" Bridget refuses to trash her son's father in public and prefers to make sure they all get along for the sake of their son. (Refreshing, no?)
"If You're Happy, It's Infectious" Take care of yourself physically and mentally at all time no matter how bogged down you get in life. Happiness has a special power. Try it! (I will after I stop griping about losing another computer to a hard drive issue--argh!)
"Take Control of Your World" Maybe Gisele and Tom love the light under the flashbulbs of the paparazzi but Bridget finds them "intrusive, offensive and aggressive." The protective thespian momma chooses to lead a quiet life to provide more balance for John. Good on you, Bridget!
How Bridget Keeps Her Legs Toned:
Check out these gams! Bridget gives her sexy legs workout on Self.com.
Also in the August SELF:
I Want These Sneaks!:
"Standout Sneakers" so bright and fun-looking that they look like pieces of candy. Not a deep story but it gives me a case of the "I Wants." See for yourself here!
SELF comes up with a pullout page each month with an exercise theme and the August issue has something really ingenious--how to workout with your doggy at the park. Some really decent moves are incorporated here along with super cute pictures, see!
A hound on a surfboard? Your pooch in yoga class? How about bringing your four-legged friend to dance class? According to SELF these can all be done. Love!
And back to shopping, I want all of these as well...:
For some reason I am responding more to the fashion in this issue than anything else which is unusual for an August issue. But here we go again. I am dying to just see some of these bags in person much less own one. Anyone want to buy me the Tory Burch number? I will give you a free training session! :)
Once More With Feeling; I Want This!:
The fashion editors at SELF made my day one more time by featuring a fashion shoot in Washington DC with some really cute items that are making me really look forward to autumn. (Though the heat and humidity in Brooklyn are certainly making me insane.)
Anyhoo, for my final "I Want," take a gander at this cute shearling jacket. Of course I like the one item that costs $1,495 and is from Burberry Brit! So are there any benefactors out there looking to send a jacket to a fun, fitness Blogger? Anyone, anyone? Buelller? Bueller?
The Rest of the Best of the August SELF:
"SELF Expression" A really cool, interesting essay from writer Stephanie Dolgoff on how she used to be a smoking hottie but now is content with being "formerly hot.' Comfortable enough to have a Blog about it which you can check out here and a book of the same title that is coming out in late August. I will have to check it out!
"Look Younger in 28 Days": SELF tells us that according to studies, people "who appear to look more youthful tend to live longer" so my vain ass is perfectly in line with this article. Lots of great beauty products are mentioned which is making me itch to head over to Sephora. But that must wait for I have more reviewing to do.
"Fountain of Youth, or Fraud?" I don't know about other fitness Bloggers but I am constantly getting pitched products that contain the acai berry and its supposed magical powers. I have suspected it was bullshit and SELF is smart and candid enough to not fall for the easy "acai hype" and give the real facts. Nice work SELF health editors!
"12 Steps to Staying Younger": More advice to remain youthful and sex-ay that is actually helpful and accurate.
"Slim in a Splash": When I work out at the pool at my local Y, I prefer to do exercises in place versus boring laps. So I am MOST happy with this feature on great moves to try out whether you are at the pool or the beach which will work your body with making your joints ache. Win, win people!
"Shed Years & Pounds in 7 Days": Top advice from SELF editors on what foods to buy (and, of course eat) to keep you slim.
For the most part I loved this issue but they also include a confusing chart/graph that is supposed to be personal and helpful but instead leaves me confused. Why do magazines keep doing this? So frustrating! Can you figure this out?
WTF? Someone please explain. My brain hurts just looking at it.
But that is a quibble. The rest of the magazine features top-notch beauty, diet and health features. I could have used more exercises out of water and without a dog but I won't bitch about. (Bridget Moynihan is having a positive effect on me!)
A solid B. Lots of fun beauty and fashion pages mixed with some excellent fitness recommendations. Good job SELF! See you in September!
What Did We Learn This Month?: Men's Health magazine
Men's Health: August 2010 issue
Who's on the cover this month?
Some dude named Kellen Lutz who plays either a vampire or a mummy in the new Twilight movie. (Heard of those?) The actor is certainly slice of nice with some killers abs and the editor's of Men's Health want you to know he is wearing CALVIN KLEIN JEANS on the cover. I mean they actually announce this on the cover. What evs, moving on...
How does he stay fit?
Kellen has pretty much had a nice body most of his life but does work hard to look this hot (see below.) he believes in "buddying up" at the gym, making exercise a contest or a game sometimes to compete with said buds, trains his abs "hard" but takes time off for them to recover and makes sure to work out his entire body to look balanced.
To watch his diet, the 25 year-old thespian eats everything with utensils--including pizza. This is just not cool. Anyhoo, here he is!
What else is in the August Men's Health?
Muscle: Don't Be a Dumbbell:
I had no idea how many weightlifting injuries occur at health clubs each year but apparently there are thousands that send people to the ER. Men's Health created a graph that illustrates which ones occur the most frequently and the body parts that are injured--see for yourself here!
Here are the biggies mentioned (of all accidents reported):
Biggest Reason for Injuries: Dropped Weights, 66% (I can tell they are usually too heavy by the grunting and throwing around of the barbells at my gym--so annoying!)
Body Part Most Frequently Injured: Torso, 28% (Are they throwing them at each other's bellies? I am confused!)
Now the one gym mishap they don't mention is people falling on (or actually OFF) the treadmill--please tell me I am not the only person this has happened to! Please?
Metrogrades: Star-Spangled Cities
In what I am sure is a very hotly debated topic for some people, Men's Health went about the trouble to find the 100 most patriotic cities in the U.S.. The criteria the editor's picked for this survey:
Calculating the percentage of registered voters who turned out for both state and federal elections.
How much money was spent on military veterans per capita.
Percentage of the population who actively volunteer, participate in civic activities
The total amount of money spent on fireworks and U.S. Flags (Not sure about that one cause lots of places restrict the sale of fireworks but okay Men's Health.)
Sooooo, According This Survey the Top Five Most Patriotic Cities Are:
Portland, OR (Home to hippies and lots of awesome bike lanes.)
Salt Lake City, UT (Apparently they have a decent punk scene in S.L.C.)
Kansas City, MO (Jazz music and BBQ aplenty.)
Seattle, WA (The land of Pearl Jam and smelly coffee shops.)
Tampa, FL (Um, got nothing here. I, um, hear it gets really hot there sometimes. Yeah.)
And Now the Least Patriotic City:
100. Jersey, City, NJ!! (Don''t blame me, Jersey!)
Check out how your home town stacks up here:
Love this....The 10 Best Street Eats in America!
Confession time, I love buying food from street vendors. No big counter that separates me from the food. No stuffy waiter who takes his time bringing me my dishes. No annoying diners who talk to loud or complain about everything at the next table. You simply walk up, ask for what you want and they just place it your hands. It's simple, easy and super convenient. Love.
So Men's Health was cool enough to look at the best street vendors across the country and offer their suggestions on what to gab on the go should you visit any of them. Here is their Top 10 list:
Here in New York City we have some called the "Big Gay Ice Cream Truck" where you can order a vanilla soft serve with sea salt and dulce de leche. My mouth is watering as I type this, nom nom!
Also the best of what's in this month's Men's Health:
Don't Hit Send! A very look at "real" (really?) texts from Men's Health readers that are funny, embarrassing and feel very true. One of the better guides I have seen on this topic. And guys, please pay attention to what women write in their texts and take the time to RESPOND to them. Don't be an ass.
Not on My Watch: Author David Baldacci tries to scare the crap out of me by saying we should never, ever feel safe and secure because gnarly shit can happen at any moment. Good read but I am not buying it.
Wake Up, Save Your Life: The Men's Health editors give guys the "seven instant health checks" that can possibly save their life. Get the issue to see for yourself, page 106.
Guys Trips That Will Change Your Life: Can I go too? I want to see Kenya, the Grand Canyon and the Galapagos Islands too! (Too funny how John Varvatos took his teenage trip to the old, grungy CBGB's into a new "cultural center" which honors the spirit of The Ramones. Never would have guessed that.)
And the rest of the August Men's Health:
The usual stories about fitness, nutrition, how to have better sex plus a "Big Summer Training Guide!" (Emphasis from Men's Health.)
Plus this truly bizarre diagram "Turn An Empty Beer Bottle Into Party Glassware." No joke, here it is!
WTF? This one I do not get for the life of me. Moving on...
Final grade for the August issue of Men's Health: B!
This is a good, solid read and quite helpful in some sections. See you in September Men's Health!
Brooklyn Fit Chick (BFC)
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Confessions of a Prairie Bitch, Lips Unsealed, Shelf Discovery
Usually summer means I spend every chance I can on my bike enjoying the wonders of a hot and sunny NYC. This girl is just too wimpy to handle riding outside during the nasty winter months so every bright day means stealing as much time as possible on two wheels.
But these past two weekends have been hot as balls and no amount of money or promises of free booze afterwards can get me out there. (Oh, the sangrias in Red Hook are sooooooooo good...)
So what does a gal do when its too hot to play outside and the summer TV offerings are beyond lame? Why curl up on the couch, crank up the AC to 11 and read through books with the fury of my super-angsty teen years to fuel me, that's what! And this past weekend gave me three reads so damn enjoyable that I had to pass them along.
Here they are!
CONFESSIONS OF A PRAIRIE BITCH:
How I Survived Nellie Oleson and Learned to Love Being Hated
What a treat this is! If you are are not familiar with Little House on the Prairie and the notorious character "Nellie Olsen" who was played to perfection by Alison Arngrim--what can I say? Go to Netflix and check out a few seasons. (And by the way, have you been under a rock the last 20 years?)
A couple of years ago I attended Alison's one-woman show--"Confessions of a Prairie Bitch" here in New York City with my friends Ron & Erin and it was a total hoot! Not only is she sharp and funny with a terrific memory for details--but she was just so warm and friendly as well. In fact Alison was nice enough to pose for a picture, see!
(I'm the one with the bitchin' tattoo.)
Alison's biography is a fast, enjoyable read where she recounts the joys of being raised by her rather "flamboyant" parents, working with the rowdy cast of Little House (including the snooty Melissa Sue Anderson who seems to have a permanent pole up her backside,) plus Alison's tireless work on behalf of those who suffer from AIDS. (Did you know that actor Steve Tracey, who played Nellie's husband "Percival" died from the disease in 1986?)
CONFESSIONS also has it fair share of surprises and revelations including Alison opening up about the sexual abuse she suffered from a family member for several years which left her emotionally scarred and brought on a "paralyzing shyness' that took years to overcome. During the day she was an envied child star working on one of the most popular shows on the planet. But her evenings and weekends were filled with dread and the constant fear of being abused again.
In the end this is a survivor's tale and the actress and activist uses her fame in order to shed light on tough subjects and give incest and sexual abuse victims a voice in the state and national legal system. Go Alison!
CONFESSIONS also features cool insider-y tidbits about her fellow cast members including real-life BFF Melissa Gilbert, her mischievous co-star Jonathan Gilbert who played her little brother Willie and once asked his TV sister after they acted in a funeral scene together "So who died?", Michael Landon ("Pa")and his livin' large attitude and my favorite story, the absolute dopiness of the mother of Lindsay/Sidney Greenbush who was tacky enough to remark about Alison's breast developing in front of the cast and crew (what a moron!)
Again, a great read but I recommend if you can also see Alison perform live-- do so. She is a gifted raconteur and there is an interactive section where you can try on one of the "Nellie" wigs yourself!
I will leave you with this clip some genius uploaded to You Tube featuring the best scenes between Nellie and Laura from Little House On the Prairie. Magnifique!
Like most people who were fans of the Go-Go's back in the 80's--I assumed they were a bunch of sweet, sassy, innocent girls who just happened to form a band and get famous. Yes they were technically "rock stars" with magazine covers and big hit singles but they didn't act like maniacs backstage or cause any shenanigans on tour buses like say, Van Halen or Motley Crue. Boy was I wrong. VERY wrong.
Belinda Carlisle's autobiography--Lips Unsealed is a very thorough retelling her of the nearly epic level of drinking and drug-taking that the all-female band would partake in before, during and after their gigs. Oh, and they just happen to star in a sex tape with a male roadie that is legendary in the show business world (read the book to get the details.)
But Belinda's drug taking did not decrease after entering into a happy marriage with the very patient Morgan Mason. Nor did it subside after becoming a mother. Or after having a successful solo career. Or after moving to the South of France to get away from the Hollywood scene. This book truly gives an intense perspective on the nature of addiction and how difficult it is to break a habit even though it is killing you physically, emotionally and spiritually. (Did I mention how patient her husband is?)
Happily her life now is about serenity and sobriety and she and Morgan can truly enjoy one another unconditionally and drug haze-free. (How she kept this secret from him for so long is truly astounding. You have heard he is a patient guy, yes?)
But this is not a tough slog of a book. Belinda had plenty of fun times in her career and there is some really good dish in there about the cute boys she and her band mates dated. I also enjoyed reading how her mother created and sewed her first "punk" stage outfits--so cute!
Unfortunately the band is not touring at this time as one of the Go Go's is having serious knee issues and needs to rest and rehabilitate. Hopefully next year, please!
I will end this review with a clip of my all-time favorite Go-Go's song ever: "Head Over Heels." (I play this in my classes all the time and it's always greeted with a big "woo hoo" from my students!)
The Teen Classics We Never Stopped Reading: A Reading Memoir
Oh my GAWD I love this book so much! Lizzie Skurnick is a writer, critic and overall book lover who has a really amazing blog called "The Old Hag" and occasionally produces essays for my favorite gossip site Jezebel. Her essays are deep, thoughtful meditations on the favorite books from her tween and teen years and she treats them with reverence and respect.
SHELF DISCOVERY is over 400 pages of the best damned collection of books that were mostly published in the 70's and 80's (oh how I love the cover art for some of these babies!) and seems to have been created just for me. I mean Lizzie has them ALL here from V.C. Andrews to Judy Blume. We are reminded about the scary works of Richard Peck (Are You in the House Alone?) and the phoniness and crapitude that was Go Ask Alice.
Curling up with a book about books might seem strange to some people but it felt like I was having drinks with an old friend. Go get SHELF DISCOVERY and see for yourself. You will thank me later.
But heed this warning: Be careful if you are near a computer or laptop when reading it because you may just wind up spending a bloody fortune on Amazon.com buying used books left and right. (Or so I hear...)
Now get out there this weekend and find some groovy books to read for yourself. That's an order!
When Celebrity Workout Videos Go Wrong: The 80s Soap Star Edition
The Soap Star Workout: 1988
Ah, let's take another trip back into the "wayback machine" and check out another 80s-era goodie. Today I bring you The Soap Star Workout that was released in either 1988 or 1989 (sources vary) and features the hottest soap actors of the day.
Their names are Charles Shaughnessy, Jacklyn Zeman, Kin Shriner, and Holly Gagnier and for some odd reason a dude named John Martin (rocking' a circa 1978 porn 'stache!) who introduces their tape via a remote TV screen. Kind of like Charlie's Angels when Charles Townsend would give his assignments over the phone to protect his identity.
Except I am guessing they not only all know each other but are pretty much on the same page about recording a workout video together, so why the strange set up?
Never mind, I am getting ahead of myself. I offer a clip from the video as well as some of my thoughts and questions below:
What the hell kind of GD set up is this video? It's creepy and cheesy at the same time.
Why the dark lighting and small set? Were they aiming for a "basement meets TV studio" look?
What on earth is going on with Charles Shaughnessy's shorts?
Why is the instructor's back to the camera? (She has some guts because I would never show my ass to a film crew!)
Who thought of the Kin Shriner intro? Awk-ward!
Did anyone bother to rehearse with Kin before? I feel bad for the dude though he certainly seems game enough.
How f***ing hot was Kin Shriner by the way?
How did Jacklyn Zeman manage to have curly hair without it looking frizzy using 80s products? I would have killed for this look!
Aw, now I really feel bad for Kin Shriner. Let me throw this out there--"Scotty Baldwin" of General Hospital in his finest acting moment ev-ah!
Magnifique Kin and your sexy beard. (Sigh) You can buy GH legally here!
Until next time...
Brooklyn Fit Chick
Follow me on Twitter @BrooklynFitChik (note spelling)
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