For my 7th or 8th birthday (I can’t remember which), I received the “Get In Shape, Girl!” kit. It came with a leotard, tights, leg-warmers, a headband, free-weights, an instructional poster and a dance ribbon. Here’s a shot of me sporting the entire ensemble:
For nostalgia’s sake, you can click HERE for the video.
My memory is fuzzy now, but I think I may have actually requested this as a gift. From the picture, you can tell I wasn’t out-of-shape (in fact, I rocked the Presidential Physical Fitness Test at school every year – flexed arm hang was my b*#ch.) The fact that this was even a “toy” says a lot about women and society, but I wasn’t thinking about that at 8. Honestly, I’m not sure what I was thinking. Maybe I was drawn to it because aerobics was something grown-up women did and it made me feel grown up. Perhaps I was just drawn to the leotard, which I wore when I pretended to be a member of the 1984 US Olympics Gymnastics Team.
Whatever my reasoning, this was the first in a long line of exercise purchases that have included machines, weights, bands, videos, books, and outfits. Like most of those things, I’m pretty sure I only used my “Get In Shape, Girl!” kit a handful of times before abandoning it to my closet shelf.