The Best (and Worst) Workout Tips from 1994 & How Fit are You?

Written By


Expert Reviewed By

Dr. Lauryn Lax, OTD, MS

Dr. Lauryn, OTD, MS is a doctor of occupational therapy, clinical nutritionists and functional medicine expert with 25 years of clinical and personal experience in healing from complex chronic health issues and helping others do the same.

Kathie Lee Gifford 17 1 | The Best (And Worst) Workout Tips From 1994 &Amp; How Fit Are You?


Last month, the Today show shared an old school clip from some old-school workout footage of the one and only Kathie Lee Gifford with some of the BEST workout tips from 1994.


You’ve got to check it out:



Words of wisdom on toning your calves while washing the dishes…to strengthening your legs while relaxing on the couch…and tightening your hiney while brushing your teeth…


It’s funny how we can look at a video like this, 20 years later, and see the ridiculousness that was, once believed, to be all-knowing fitness and body wisdom.


And it got met thinking…about ALL the health and exercise advice we are bombarded with in our culture on a daily basis.


  • Stand in the grocery store check out line, and chances are you will see several magazine covers, claiming the latest wisdom in six-pack abs, flawless thighs and sleek, toned arms.


  • Consult any diet or nutrition program, and one tells you to eat all protein and fat, no carbs; another tells you to cycle your carbs; and still another tells you to just count calories—and keep them under 1200. Which way is the right way?!


  • Pick up the latest release in diet/health books on Amazon, and new revelations and insights are constantly being unearthed and revealed as the ‘secrets to success’ under the guise of catchy, captivating titles:
    • “The Body Clock Diet”
    • “All day fat burning diet”
    • “Extreme Transformation”
    • “Kickstart The New You”
    • “Bigger Leaner Stronger” & “Thinner, Leaner, Stronger”
    • “Unique Scientific Breakthroughs in Weight Loss”


Bigger Leaner Stronger

Despite the bombardment though, it can be difficult to decipher or see these programs and ‘words of wisdom’ as ‘ridiculous’ (like we see Kathie Lee’s video from 1994).


We are in the thick of information overload:


  • Barre method
  • CrossFit
  • Functional fitness bootcamps
  • Tone it Up booty-call training routines
  • Weight Watchers
  • The Dash Diet
  • ‘Eating Clean’ and avoiding fats
  • Paleo
  • Ketogenic diets
  • Low-fat diets
  • Pilates
  • Nutri-system


What is the right way to go?


Right Diet To Choose?


Will there be a day—say 20 years from now—we look back, laugh and say, ‘What were we thinking?!”




That being said—no matter what nutrition philosophy or workout regime is thrown your way, don’t do things just because you are told it’s the ‘way’ that works—try it on for size yourself (chances are, had we all tried Kathie Lee’s tightening and toning workouts ‘on for size’ back in 1994, we would have quickly discovered all we got was a lot of calf-cramping!).


AND, the bottom line:


There is NO getting around eating and moving the way our bodies were PRIMALLY DESIGNED to eat and move (it’s not rocket science!):


The food: Meat. Veggies. Some fruit. Little starch. No sugar. Healthy fats. Lots of water.


As for exercise:


  • Lots of walking/slow daily movement
  • Some high-intensity bursts of movement (like running from a bear or hunting down your dinner)
  • Lifting heavy things on occasion (Stones, dinner, shelter materials)


The seven innate human primal movement patterns for daily function (the movements ALL humans incorporate in their daily moving and grooving activities) include:



  • Squat (back squat, air squats, front squats, goblet squats)
  • Lunge (weighted walking lunges, bench step ups, side lunges, reverse lunges)
  • Push (pushup, push press, strict press, push jerk, bench press, incline press)
  • Pull (pull-ups, back rows, ring rows, chin-ups)
  • Twist (wood chops, palloff press, medicine ball throws-side-to-side, Russian twists)
  • Bend (deadlift, clean and press/jerk, Romanian deadlifts/stiff-legged deadlifts)
  • Gait/Combination of movements (like pulling, lunging and twisting to propel body forward; may include: walking, jogging, running, jumping)




That’s ALL you need to know to fuel your body and move your body to thrive.


Thrive on (and put those Kathie Lee VHS video tapes away in your closet—or garage sale—for good).


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