Better & Bolder the Blog

I gotta work on my push ups


Perhaps you’ve heard Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Supreme Court justice, referred to as Notorious RBG (this is a play on the name of rapper Notorious B.I.G.).

You may have read that Ginsburg wears a large, jeweled collar or a jabot to signal when she is dissent of a court decision. This has become so famous that Oiselle now offers a dissent collar t-shirt and this company, Dissent Pins, offers pins and necklaces of both the collar and of Ginsburg’s face.

Here is an article explaining why RBG has become a beloved icon and another explaining how she got the Notorious in front of her initials.

I love the fuss over Ginsburg the way I love the fuss over Helen Mirren’s beauty, poise, and fun attitude: we are appreciating women’s age and wisdom. We’re saying: I want to be Her.

Here’s one more reason to celebrate RBG. She has her own workout. Nay, she has her own book describing her workout.

How did that happen? Apparently, “Ginsburg has said husband told her she looked ‘like a survivor of a concentration camp’ and needed to do something to rebuild her strength” (NBC news). So she hired Bryant Johnson to train her and got to work. “These days she trains with Johnson twice a week for an hour each time, doing exercises including push-ups and the core-strengthening plank. She does two sets of 10 push-ups, and not the easier ones where the knees touch the ground.”

From what I’ve read, Ginsburg uses resistance bands and balls and body weight exercises but also hand weights and weight machines. In Politico’s article, Johnson urges, ““Do something. If you’re not doing anything then I advise you do something…. It doesn’t matter what you do. You find out what is your niche and do something. Your body is made to move.” So now I love both RBG and her trainer.

Here’s the thing with know about aging and movement: use it or lose it. Want to get up and down from the toilet in your 80s? RBG is 84, and her trainer told her: You gotta squat. And you gotta squat all the way down to toilet level instead of these tiny dips because you’re afraid your knees will give out. Build a strong butt; that’s how you help your knees. Johnson has RBG working on one-legged squats. It’s not What Would RBG Do? It’s What Can RBG Do? And then we say, yes, we can. We can do that, too.

Because Ruth Bader Ginsburg is our Super Hero. She’s smart and courageous and apparently, she can whip out more push ups than I can.