In 1981, Olivia Newton John sang “Let’s get physical, physical. I wanna get physical. Let’s get into physical. Let me hear your body talk, your body talk.” And rightfully so, as the 1980’s saw a major rise in the way of leg warmers and VHS workouts. Let’s see where our favorite 1980’s fitness stars are now.
Raquel Welch published a workout lifestyle book on aerobics and yoga.
The book was a major success and led to best-selling poster sales of the fitness guru’s bombing body.
Raquel Welch – Now
Welch proceeded to act in various films, taking on roles of strong female characters. She was extremely influential in movie history as she helped change the way in which women were portrayed in film. Out was the mainstay blonde bombshell and in was the fierce and determined woman. Welch was awarded a Golden Globe Award in 1974 for her performance in The Three Musketeers. Shortly after, she was nominated for another Golden Globe Award for her performance in Right to Die.
Raquel was ranked by Playboy as third on their “100 Hottest Stars if the Twentieth Century” and Men’s Health ranked her number 2 in its “Hottest Women of All Time List. To this day, the star is still glowing at age 78.
Richard Simmons – Then
Picture Richard Simmons. Is the imagine you coin of him dressed in an exaggeratingly vibrant and 80’s fitness getup? Our is too.
Simmons was known for his quite ‘out there’ and flamboyant personality. He gathered quite a big fan base after sharing with the world his own struggle with obesity.
Richard Simmons – Now
Simmons has not made a public appearance since 2014 and his fitness gym “Slimmons” in Beverly Hills, California closed abruptly in November 2016 without a public statement.
His disappearance from the public has sparked speculation and concern about his well being. We hope that he’s doing alright and still rocking his short shorts.
Cher – Then
In her 1991 book called “Forever Fit: The Lifetime Plan for Health, Fitness and Beauty,” Cher dons tight black pants, a knotted t-shirt and has her foot perched up on a barbell, which quite frankly screams ‘girl boss.’ She promised that she would forever be in good shape and that she was dedicated to the cause.
Her book highlighted exercise and weight loss programs, nutrition tips, and recommended skin-care products. She blossomed in the 80’s as a fitness diva, singer and performer and earned her well deserved spot as an icon of the 80’s.
Cher – Now
Cher has stayed true to her promise and continues to rock a fit body at the age of 72. Despite years passing, the singer is still able to give a stellar performance, as seen in her performance at the 2017 Billboard Music Awards.
The then 71-year-old told the audience that she can do a 5-minute plank. She can’t stress enough the importance of leading a healthy and active lifestyle and her body proves her lifestyle is holding up quite well against the test of time.
Heather Locklear – Then
Heather Locklear was what you would call, a triple threat. A drop-dead gorgeous blonde model, talented actress and fitness instructor, the multi-talented woman made many girls envious and left many guys fantasizing.
Her perfect physique (who ever said there’s no such thing as perfect?) led to girls running to stores to buy leotards in hopes of even slightly resembling her. She was one of the most famous actresses to grace our TV’s at the time.
Heather Locklear – Now
Celebrity trainer Garret Warren who trains at Woodland Hills Athletic club said of Locklear ““Heather is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met, but also one of the most professional. She was always on-time, incredibly committed and very driven when it came to her workouts.”
They say that kindness makes you a better person. But more beautiful? I’m starting to believe it. The now 57-year-old star is still holding her own and looking amazing. While she parted ways from her home workout videos long ago, she has since moved on to big-screen films. We’re happy to still be seeing the star.
Denise started her career off as a competitive gymnast, where she competed for the University of Arizona. She graduated with a BA in physical education and a minor in exercise physiology. Since graduating, the adorable blonde has been teaching classes, producing fitness shows and exercise video tapes and writing books and columns on exercise and healthy living.
She emphasizes staying fit naturally and says that she herself works out for 30 minutes a day. She has had a long-running exercise program called getting fit with Denise Austin on ESPN2. She is also a former member of The President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. American’s blue-eyed fitness sweetheart married former tennis player Jeff Austin in 1983, sorry boys.
The now 61-year-old continues to promote fitness to this day. In an interview with shape, the fitness star said: “I still have so much fun promoting fitness. It never goes ‘out of style’ or gets old!”
In 2014 she released her 100th DVD which she called Yoga Booty Lift.
Tamilee Webb – Then
The widely praised series, Buns of Steel and Abs of Steel made Tamilee Webb a household name in the late 80’s. The promotion of the series were greatly helped by infomercials, which in the 80’s were used to sell fitness products. Over $10 million were brought in from video sales.
Her success earned Tamilee a position on FitTV as a fitness expert. The channel is owned by Discovery Communications and ESPN Fitness Pros.
Tamilee Webb – Now
Years later and Tamilee Webb is still rocking those buns of steel and rock solid abs. She is still releasing workout videos, her latest the Abs of Steel 1, Buns of Steel 3, and Arms & Abs of Steel.
But don’t be fooled into thinking that the beautiful blonde got to where she is today just by her passion for fitness. The star also holds a master’s degree in exercise science and is the CEO of her company, Webb International.
Kathy Smith – Then
Kathy Smith became popular for her workout videos during the late 1980s. Her videos have since sold more than 16 million copies.
She created her own nutrition and exercise program which she titled Project: You! Type 2. It was created in collaboration with the American Diabetes Association to help people manage their Type 2 diabetes. Kathy became a popular face in the fitness world at this time.
Kathy Smith – Now
Kathy Smith has seen major success for her career as the “titan of the workout industry.” Through personal fitness apparel, books, equipment and videos, her brand has made over $500 Million.
She wrote a book called Moving Through Menopause which garnered her the role of the spokesperson for the International Council on Active Aging. She also has a website, kathysmith.com which offers fitness advice, lifestyle tips and a personal blog in which she continuously swears by her slogan- progress, not perfection.” At the age of 66, she looks more dazzling than ever.
Jake Steinfeld – Then
Jack is recognized as the creator of the personal fitness training industry. A fitness icon, it’s hard to talk about this muscle mega without mentioning his nickname which brought him great success- “Body by Jake.”
He created FitTV, a 24-hour fitness lifestyle network. He subsequently sold the network to News Corp in order to take on a new project- founding the Major League Lacrosse which became the first professional outdoor lacrosse league.
Jake Steinfeld – Now
Having a business mindset is what brought Jack so much success. Through the development of his brand Body By Jack, fostered a good eye for profitable business ventures. His latest idea came in the way of transforming the training industry for the modern tech age.
He created the FitOrbit 2.0, an online personal training platform that provides services of trainers and nutritionists at affordable prices.
Jamie Lee Curtis – Then
In 1985, Jamie Lee Curtis starred alongside John Travolta in the film Perfect. The film was based on a number of articles which appeared in Rolling Stone magazine in the late 1970s, chronicling the popularity of LA health clubs among single people.
While response to the film was mostly negative, it did bring Curtis more recognition and had Quentin Tarantino claiming that it was a greatly under-appreciated film.
Jamie Lee Curtis – Now
Jamie Lee Curtis has come a long way from her not so successful role in Perfect and has since become a big star in Hollywood. Her career took a turn for the better when she became the unstoppable scream queen and starred in horror films like Halloween II, The Fog, Prom Night, Terror Train, and Roadgames.
Besides her film career, she also held roles on television and wrote a number of children’s books. She is recognized for her humanitarian work which includes her support and advocacy of children’s hospitals.
John Travolta – Then
You can’t talk about fitness in the 80’s without a mention of John Travolta. If girls didn’t fall in love with his short shorts and crotch thrusting scene in Perfect then they definitely fell for his perfectly greased hair and bad boy character in Grease.
He is fully deserving of a spot on this list.
John Travolta – Now
While he may not have retained the physique that made girls fall in love with him 40 years ago, he still is just as charming and talented. Although his acting career saw a decline in the 80’s, after starring in Pulp Fiction, his career enjoyed a revival shortly thereafter. He continued to land other major roles in films like Get Shorty, Broken Arrow Swordfish, and Hairspray.
He has received numerous nominations for his performances and won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture - Musical or Comedy for his role in Get Shorty.
Arnold Schwarzenegger – Then
One of the most important figures in the world of bodybuilding and widely considered to be one of the greatest bodybuilders of all time, the Austrian born star started to gain worldwide attention at the young age of 18 after winning one of his first major competitions, the junior Mr. Europe contest in 1965. He won it again the following year at age 19. He proceeded to win many contests including five Mr. Universe victories and seven Mr. Olympia wins.
Apart from his fitness career, he also wrote a monthly column for Muscle & Fitness and Flex, two bodybuilding magazines.
Arnold Schwarzenegger – Now
What started as fitness fame resulted in major worldwide recognition for acting and the star quickly become one of Hollywood’s best action film celebrities. He had his breakthrough role in 1982 in Conan the Barbarian and shortly after appeared in the Terminator movie franchise. As if a fitness and acting career weren’t satisfying enough, he also decided to become a politician and announced his candidacy in 2003 in a special recall election for the governor of California. He ended up serving as governor until 2011.
Schwarzenegger still stars in films today and is expected to return to the big screen in the upcoming Terminator movie in July 2019. And as for his fitness reputation? It still lives on and the fitness guru is honored by the Arnold Sports Festival, one of the best professional bodybuilding competitions which was named after him.
Lou Ferrigno – Then
Lou has had a long and versatile career, including working as a fitness trainer, consultant, actor and professional bodybuilder. He has now retired from bodybuilding but the world of bodybuilding will not forget when he stole the spotlight as an IFBB Mr. America winner and for his appearance in the Pumping Iron documentary about bodybuilding.
Prior to his fame, Lou worked as a sheet metal worker for $10 an hour. Luckily, he realized that there were better opportunities meant for him and left the job in pursuit of greater things.
Lou Ferrigno – Now
Following his bodybuilding career, Lou played football for the Toronto Argonauts but his career was cut short after he broke the legs of another player during a scrimmage. Clearly, he carried over some of that strength from his former bodybuilding stint.
He later went on to star in The Incredible Hulk, which clearly fits the mold. At the start of the 2000’s, he was cast in The King of Queens, playing himself. The CBS sitcom received favorable reviews.
Judi Sheppard Missett – Then
The 80’s fitness industry would be nothing without Jazzercise. Jazzercise, a dance fitness franchise company was founded by Judi Sheppard Missett in 1969. The full-body workout combines dance, strength, and resistance training with popular music. The company today has grown to over 8,300 franchises around the world in 32 countries.
Judi started the company after teaching at a dance studio and noticing the high dropout rate among participants. She made it her mission to create a class which combined dance with physical fitness. The concept quickly took off and people were hooked.
Judi Sheppard Missett – Now
Judi is still looking fit at the impressive age of 74. In June 2016, she wrote a piece for the Huffington Post titled “Don’t Act Your Age.” In it she shared her relationship with fitness and her prosperous career in the field. She disclosed that her biggest secret was not to act her age.
“How old do you feel?” She wrote, “I feel about 30. Then I look in the mirror, and I don’t see a 30-year-old. What I do see is someone who looks pretty good, is active and healthy, and has a serious spark to her.”
Tonya Harding – Then
Tonya was born in Portland, Oregon and was raised mostly by her mother. Her lower-class family did not have the money to foster athleticism. Nonetheless, Tonya started to skate at the ripe age of 3. In the mid-80’s, she became a prominent face in the world of skating. Tonya achieved several accomplishments throughout her skating career, like being the first American woman to execute a triple Axel.
She also competed in the 1994 Winter Olympics Figure Skating Competition. However, controversy seemed to trail Harding every step of the way.
Tonya Harding – Now
One month prior to the 1994 Winter Olympics, champion Nancy Kerrigan was beaten in the knee. She was forced to drop out of the competition and Harding was able to join. Rumors began to circulate that it was Tonya and her ex-husband who hired somebody to assault Kerrigan. Harding was convicted in court and the attack received a lot of publicity. The incident greatly impacted Harding and she was later arrested twice and attempted suicide.
In 2017, a biographical film was released titled “I, Tonya.” It received positive reviews. Harding continues to be referenced in popular culture, in T.V, film, and music.
Nancy Kerrigan – Then
While her family wasn’t exactly financially equipped to deal with the high costs involved in professional figure skating, her father did everything in his power to help his daughter make her dreams come true. Daniel Kerrigan worked 3 jobs to be able to support her including driving the ice resurfaced at a local rink in Stoneham, Massachusetts in exchange for Nancy’s lessons.
In 1987, Nancy took fourth place at the junior U.S Figure Skating Championships and her jumping skills and talent became widely recognized.
Nancy Kerrigan – Now
Nancy fell for the sport of figure skating at the young age of 6. She became a prominent name in figure skating and took home the bronze medal in the 1992 Olympics game in Albertville, France.
After the scandalous attack that changed her life, she luckily recovered and was able to compete in the 1994 Olympics in Norway. Most recently, she was spotted on Dancing With The Stars for season 24 and made it until the seventh week.
Chris Evert Lloyd – Then
Chris started playing tennis at the age of 5, thanks to her father Jimmy who was a professional coach and winner of men’s singles at the Canadian Championships in 1947. She made her professional debut in 1971 at the Grand Slam tournament at the young age of 16.
She quickly began to reign over women’s tennis and her undefeatable status was celebrated. She consistently won seven French Open singles, a record which remained unbroken for 27 years.
Chris Evert Lloyd – Now
Her career was at an all time high in the 80’s. She decided to leave the sport in 1989 after winning 154 single titles, 18 Grand Slam singles, and 32 double titles. From 303 tournaments that she entered, she reached 273 semifinals.
Her final match was so appropriately, a win. Apart from her career, Chris was married three times to fellow athletes. Her third marriage also ended in divorce in 2009. She currently runs a tennis academy in Florida and contributes to Tennis magazine.
Charlene Prickett – Then
Charlene was born in the 1940’s in Little Rock, Arkansas. She found fame in her fitness videos which were all about simple choreography and basic workouts.
The videos were geared toward an older crowd and those looking for a simple integration of sport in their daily life. She received criticism from some people that she talked too much in the videos and that it wasn’t motivating enough for people to get fit.
Charlene Prickett – Now
Prickett became a director and writer of her videos, including the 1988 No Jump Aerobics and two videos in 2002 which were released: Return to Slender: A Step Aerobics and Muscle Toning Workout for Postnatal and Overweight Women and Cruising Altitude: 1 Hour Vigorous Low Impact Aerobics.
Nowadays, Charlene has taken refuge from the public eye. She used to have a website charleneprickett.com but it seems to no longer be running.
Marianna Komlos – Then
Starting her career as a middleweight bodybuilder and competing in 1993, Marianna quickly became in the public eye after winning first place at the British Columbia Championships.
Jerry Kindela, editor-in-chief of Flex commented “Marianna’s one of the most beautiful bodybuilders I’ve ever seen.” Thanks to her dazzling looks, she proceeded to work as a fitness model after a brief stint in the World Wrestling Federation in 99’. She left the WWF shortly after due to sexist comments and name calling.
Marianna Komlos – Now
Marianna’s successful career and life were cut short after the bodybuilder sadly died from cancer at age 35. Prior to her death, she was married to former MMA fighter and Hollywood Stunt double Paul Lazenby.
Her legacy will always live on in the fitness and bodybuilding world and she will be remembered as one of the fittest woman to honor professional wrestling.
Sharon Bruneau – Then
She began her career as a successful model, until a bad case of pneumonia led her to lose a lot of weight. After recovering from the illness, she began to lift weights in order to put on weight and go back to modeling. Hoping to go back to modeling, she was then rejected by modeling agencies for her now “bigger” frame.
So, Sharon decided to try her luck at bodybuilding and found great success, appearing on the covers of Muscle & Fitness and Flex. Weider Health and Fitness publications signed her on as their first ever female representative from 1991-1998.
Sharon Bruneau – Now
Sharon retired from bodybuilding after the 1994 Ms. Olympia contest and switched instead to fitness competitions but shortly left that a year later. She has held small roles in films including paste.
Nowadays, she can be found inspiring others through motivational workshops in which she discusses how health and fitness impacted her life.
Debbie Dobbins – Then
Debbie began her fitness career long before she started teaching an aerobics class and cross training for seven years. Throughout high school, she competed in several sports including track and field and basketball. She moved to Los Angeles at the age of 24 in order to grow her fitness career.
She worked there as an aerobics instructor while also playing volleyball for Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa. She modeled for various exercise magazines, did promotional videos and photo shoots and also worked as an NFL cheerleader. Owing to her good looks, she took home third place in the 1993 Ms. Fitness USA competition.
Debbie Dobbins – Now
Debbie’s prospering career was tragically cut short when she died from smoke inhalation in a house fire in 1993. Her death shook the fitness community and in an episode of Hard Copy in 1994, it was suggested that foul play was perhaps the cause of the fire.
Debbie’s reputation as a super powerful and beautiful bodybuilder and fitness model will live on.
Tracy Austin – Then
Tracy Austin comes from a family of professional tennis players so it was not a question at all that she would take up the sport as a young child. In her arsenal of awards, she has three Grand Slam titles, one each from the 1979 and 1981 US Opens and the mixed doubles title at the Wimbledon Championships in 1980.
Additionally, she is the youngest person ever to win the US Open female singles champion in history since 1979 and is the youngest person to be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. That’s pretty impressive!
Tracy Austin – Now
Austin was forced to retire quite abruptly due to a series of injuries and ultimately a car accident. But since retiring in 1994, she has not left the world of tennis and has instead contributed her deep knowledge of the sport to NBC and the USA network as a commentator for the French Open and the US Open. On top of this, she is a regular broadcaster on the Australian Open and the BBC’s coverage of Wimbledon.
In 2010, she joined the US Open team on the Tennis Channel and has been covering the Rogers Cup on Canadian TV since 2004.
Jane Fonda – Then
The best selling workout video of the 80’s was by far The Jane Fonda Workout. It sold more than a million copies all over the world. Women flocked in numbers to electronics stores to bring home new VCRs so that they too could join in on the craze.
Due to her popularity, she released 23 videos and saw sales skyrocket to 17 million copies, topping the charts of workout videos. Jane was unbeatable.
Jane Fonda – Now
Jane is still taking the world by storm and producing work out videos, this time for a more fitting crowd for her age group- an older one. The now 80-year-old looks phenomenal and we think it’s safe to attribute her good looks to her lifelong commitment to fitness.
In 2010, she released two videos, this time on DVD. Besides her career as a fitness instructor, she has also dabbled a bit in the acting world and as a political activist.
Alyssa Milano – Then
Before casting spells on people in her role on the television series Charmed, Alyssa was getting her fit on. At just 16 years of age, in 1988, she created a teen workout video called “Teen Steam.” In the video, her and a few friends performed a bedroom workout.
The video was intended to teach girls how to let off some steam from the everyday problems of mothers and boys.
Alyssa Milano – Now
Milano has built quite the resume for herself since that 1988 workout video, having big roles in several hit series like Melrose Place, Charmed, and My Name is Earl. In 2013, she acted in Mistresses for two seasons but left due to family issues.
In 2017, she landed a role in two Netflix comedy films- Hall Pass and New Year’s Eve. Milano married Creative Artists Agency agent David Bugliari in December 2009 and the two have a son and a daughter together.
Linnea Quigley – Then
Linnea’s workout video was not your typical at home workout setting. She (bizarrely?) released a horror workout in which she’s seen working out while coming face to face with zombies during her run. She invites the zombies to come to poolside aerobics and then invites her friends over for a sleepover party and more exercise.
We aren’t sure how motivational this was in terms of fitness but we’ve gotta give her points on being different.
Linnea Quigley – Now
Linda Quigley became the “scream queen,” after appearing in a number of low-budget horror films. The B-movie actress has also dipped her feet in singing and writing and has written three books.
Besides all of that (as if it wasn’t enough), she is a dedicated animal rights activist and active with PETA. She has been a vegetarian since the late 70’s, but her appearance on Vegetarian Times cover has been controversial as the actress has also been in movies which depicts violence against women.
Paula Abdul – Then
There were few things that Paula didn’t get her hands on. She was first discovered by the Jackson’s and went on to become a singer, dancer and T.V personality. Paula released several dance and fitness videos and has worked as a choreographer for some of the most famous celebrities including Janet Jackson.
Her first workout video was called Paula Abdul’s Get Up and Dance! Following this, she released Cardio Dance and Cardio Cheer.
Paula Abdul- Now
Paula has gained worldwide recognition as the main judge and guest judge on several talent television series. For seven years, she was a judge on American Idol. Following that long gig, she was a judge on the X factor, Live to Dance and So You Think You Can Dance Australia. For her contributions and choreography work, she was awarded the Lifetime Achievement award in 2013.
After taking a long break from music in pursuit of other ventures, she performed her first full headline set in 26 years in 2016 at the Mixtape Festival in Hershey, Pennsylvania.
Cynthia Kereluk – Then
Cynthia is a fitness and exercise guru from British Columbia, Canada. Not only was she an exercise queen, but she also landed the title of Miss Canada and Miss Universe in 1984, thanks to beauty, charm, and apparently perfect genes.
Her impact was so profound that she had an audience both in the U.S and in Canada and her own fitness program called Everyday Workout.
Cynthia Kereluk – Now
Kereluk had a short lived career as a workout master and a beauty pageant winner. Following that, she became an actress in various B-Movies like Overnight, The Pink Chiquitas and Mark of Cain.
She married English rocker Paul Rodgers in a surprise wedding in 2007. Paul had recently finished up on tour with Queen.
Olivia Newton John – Then
While she may be most recognized for her role in Grease as Sandy, she is highly celebrated for a number of other accomplishments. In 1981, she released her most successful studio album, the double platinum physical. She led the music video industry with the release of her video album for physical, taking home a fourth Grammy for her work. It was aired as an ABC prime-time special called “let’s get physical.”
Following the success of the album, she released another double platinum album and with that, another Grammy nomination. People couldn’t get enough of the spandex-wearing high note-hitting actress.
Olivia Newton John – Now
The now 70-year-old is no longer breaking it down in 80’s sweat sessions. She hung her towel up long ago, and with great respect. The star is a four time Grammy Award-winner who made it on the top spot of the Billboard Hot 100 singles five times. She has sold over 100 million albums worldwide and her contribution to the Grease soundtrack helped make it one of the most successful soundtracks in history.
Other interests of hers include working as an activist for environmental and animal rights issues. The star is still touring today, making her career span for over 55 years.
Cathy Lee Crosby – Then
Cathy gave one great performance after another in television shows and movies. In order to keep up her good looks and fit frame, unlike taking it to the gym or dance studio, the actress took to the tennis courts.
Crosby was actually quite the skilled player and made it her mission to compete in Wimbledon.
Cathy Lee Crosby – Now
Crosby made it to Wimbledon but soon after quit playing tennis. It seemed like there was turmoil both in her professional and personal life, as she also split with ex-husband football star Joe Theismann. She sued him for $4.5 million with claims that he “abandoned his promise to financially support her.”
This came as quite the shock as it appeared as though her acting career was going well so it isn’t certain why she would have been so pressed for money. Her last film was Ablaze in 2001 where she acted opposite Ice-T and Tom Arnold.
Tony Little – Then
This is not your average fitness guru. He sold more than $4 billion worth of fitness products via infomercials.
How’d he do it? We’re sure that his not so typical hairstyle, trademark smile, and chained necklace had something to do with it. Not to mention those sleeveless shirts. The most epic product sold by him was the Gazelle elliptical glider.
Tony Little – Now
Considering his not so smooth childhood (his dad abandoned him and his mother) Little was still able to pull it together and find success in fitness.
However, he was often the subject of bullying and ridiculed by other television personalities like Fabio, Richard Simmons, and Susan Powter. Fortunately, he didn’t let them rain on his parade and he continued to appear on TV.
Fabio Lanzoni – Then
Known as Fabio, the Italian norm actor slash model appeared on the cover of many romance models and fitness magazines. Without a doubt, he had the unofficial title of the most attractive man alive and his blonde locks and built shape helped the cause. His body seemed to be without any imperfections.
He released an exercise book and fitness video called Fabio Fitness. Girls couldn’t get enough of his blonde locks of beach-wave hair.
Fabio Lanzoni – Now
While Fabio could have continued his career in fitness, he chose to stay in television and films. He became the face of Versace for the Mediterraneum fragrance and appeared on The Bold and the Beautiful several times.
He started a business called Healthy Planet Vitamins and was named a spokesperson for the American Cancer Society.
Suzanne Somers – Then
Complex.com described it quite appropriately about Somers “As the spokeswoman for the Thighmaster, she [Suzanne Somers] is largely responsible for the invention of the infomercial … we would never have had the joys of ShamWow, Shake Weight, and Miss Cleo’s Psychic Friend’s Network if she hadn’t blazed that trail.”
However, her reputation for squeezing exercise equipment between her thighs wasn’t satisfactory so Somers went on to pursue much higher endeavors.
Suzanne Somers – Now
Suzanne has had a very successful career in which she’s played several roles such as Chrissy Snow on Three’s Company or as Carol Foster Lambert on Step by Step. It seems like there isn’t an area the star hasn’t tried and her resume is very eclectic.
The star has not only acted, but has also written best-selling self-help books, two autobiographies, four diet books and a poetry book. Her work as a health spokesperson has gotten her some criticism for her views on certain medical subjects, but nevertheless she remains an admirable individual.
Jennifer Beals - Then
She received critical acclaim for her role in Flashdance in 1983 winning NAACP Image Award for Actress and received a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress-Motion Picture Comedy or Musical. In the film, she played a welder at a steel mill who aspires to become a professional dancer, has no formal dance training and works as an exotic dancer by night. It turned her into one of the defining figures of the 80s.
She appeared in several other noteworthy films. She brought popularity to the off the shoulder shirt and leg warmer look and made dancing your way into physical perfection all the rage.
Jennifer Beals - Now
As stunning as ever, Jennifer Beals looks like she can still perform the iconic “Maniac” routine. She hasn’t stopped starring in films and TVs shows since her breakthrough in the 80s.
We imagine that having a daughter now does make things a little different. She is set to star in an upcoming adult romance film called After.
Gilad Janklowicz - Then
The Israeli native fitness icon made history when his “Bodies in Motion” workout program aired on ESPN.
Nobody could forget Gilad’s toned Arms against the Hawaiian backdrop. And for just half an hour a day you can get a killer bikini bod? We’re down.
Gilad Janklowicz - Now
Gilad’s show is the longest running fitness show in the US running from 1985 to 1996. He produced more than 30 workout videos and worked with high-profile clients.
For his contribution to the fitness world, he was inducted into the National Fitness Hall of Fame in March 2007.
Greg Smithey - Then
If you were around in the 80s and you didn’t know about Greg Smithey, then your bottom half was seriously missing out.
Best known for creating the original Buns of Steel in 1987, the fitness and aerobics instructor has continued to promote fitness throughout his career. Over one million copies of his workout were sold on VHS.
Greg Smithey - Now
The Buns of Steel founder has pretty much disappeared from the spotlight. He did, however, relaunch a DVD version of the original Buns of Steel.
Buns of steel fans have reported seeing him in Vegas.
Quite different then the rest of the perky spandex wearing aerobics stars on the list, Mr. T was an iconic symbol of the 80s.
Mr. T was known for his tough-guy imagine with his distinctive Mohawk hairstyle, gold jewelry and ripped biceps.
Mr T - Now
Mr. T’s life took quite the turn since his days as a young child in Chicago in which he lived in a three-room apartment with his four sisters and seven brothers. His career has parlayed from working as a bouncer to a bodyguard for several high-profile individuals including the famed Muhammad Ali, Steve McQueen, Michael Jackson and Diana Ross.
He also dabbled in pro wrestling and made several TV appearances, advertising endorsements and film cameos.
June Jones - Then
June Jones was one of the originals of Australia’s “Aerobics Oz Style,” which was a workout program to motivate those living Down Under to get moving.
The program was extremely popular and ran from 1982 to 2005.
June Jones - Then
June Jones is still rocking a solid body and still promoting fitness. She released her DVD “Beautiful Stretches” in 2016 and that same year, her and her girls had a reunion show on aerobica Aussie style.
Girls just want to have fun and workout in neon outfits.
Bess Motta - Then
As one of the most popular fitness women of the 80s, Bess Motta was easily recognized as the aerobics queen of the 1980s. She was one of the “bevy of beautiful girls” on the Canadian fitness phenomenon “20 minutes workout.”
While the show aired only for two seasons between 83’ and 84’, Motta’s career continued to flourish. She has been credited with putting TV aerobics on the map. She became a fitness advocate after coming back from England 30 pounds overweight.
Bess Motta - Now
The big-haired provocative fitness star turned to acting, landing small parts in “The Terminator,” “New Monkees” and “The Home Show.”.
Her last appearance was in 2014 when she was on Ken Reid’s TV guidance counselor podcast. An aerobics comeback wouldn’t go unappreciated.
Derrick Evans - Then
Derrick Evans, or shall we more appropriately call him “Mr. Motivator,” is a Jamaican-Born British fitness instructor who rose to fame in the early 90s from his appearances on the UK show GMTV where he led live fitness sessions.
His trademark were his tight fitting and colorful spandex outfits. Due to his popularity on the show, he went on to produce a number of fitness and workout videos like “Mr. Motivator’s 10 Minutes BLTs” and “Bums Legs & Tums.”
Derrick Evans - Now
Derrick has since retired from his bright colored outfits, but takes to colorful things in new ways- his Jamaican ecotourism resort, PaintSplat.
He also continues to appear on fitness TV programs.
Karen Voight - Then
The 80s were the time to seen and be seen in an aerobics gym. And if you could be the founder of it then all the better. Karen trained other fitness icons like Kathy Smith and Keli Roberts as well as big names in Hollywood like Tina Turner and Bette Midler.
She also consulted with the talented Paula Abdul on her dancer workout videos.
Karen Voight - Now
Over the span of her career, she released over 25 fitness videos and published a book on precision training.
She is still recognized as a pioneer in the fitness world. She co-starred in a 90’s fitness video with supermodel Elle Macpherson and continued to make videos into the 2000s.
Debbie Reynolds - Then
The iconic Debbie Reynolds found fame with her adorable upbeat fitness video called “Do it Debbie’s Way” in 1983.
Alongside her starred other popular actresses such as Florence Henderson and Teri Garr.
Debbie Reynolds - Now
Starting as a fitness guru, Debbie took to the big screen and vastly become a beloved Hollywood figure. Over the span of her 70-year-career, she received numerous Golden Globe nominations and an Emmy nomination. Her first leading role was in “Singin in the rain.”
She was also a cabaret performer. Her dance studio in North Hollywood is still running today. Sadly, she died from a stroke in 2016. The accomplished star will be missed.
Susan Powter - Then
The Australian-born fitness personality Susan Powter became popular after moving to America. Known for her signature platinum short hair and red lipstick, she was somewhat of a rebellious personality.
She worked as a nutritionist, personal trainer author and motivational speaker.
Susan Powter - Now
Her weight loss infomercial that caught on in the 80’s featured the catchphrase “Stop the Insanity.” She is known for speaking barefoot and for her edgy appearance; think occasional pink hair.
Susan has hosted her own talk show and is still active in publishing and making TV appearances.
Billy Blanks - Then
Billy tied the knot with his Japanese interpreter Tomoko Sato and the two relocated to Japan in 2009.
He still teaches Tae Bo and his workouts are available on YouTube and on his website.
Billy Blanks - Now
Blanks moved to Japan after he married his Japanese interpreter, Tomoko Sato, in 2009.
Blanks still teaches Tae Bo — and his workouts can be find on YouTubey and on his website and — he also makes special appearances.