When my husband and I lived in LA (a lifetime ago), we went to a taping of The Ellen DeGeneres show. So many things have changed since then… I had red hair, he had some… But one thing that hasn’t changed is my affinity for being upside down. I don’t know what it is, (perhaps the ‘retired’ gymnast in me) but sometimes I see a wall and I just have to get up on that piece.
The Ellen Show producers came out to the line where all the audience members were waiting and asked if any of us had any strange talents. (Uh, yeah buddy, how much time you got?) A few people raised their hands with the talent of a foreign language, opera singing, bird calls… And little ole crimson haired me just blurted out,
“I can do upside down handstand wall push-ups”.
No one said a word. The producer looked at me- small, kinda soft around the edges back then, and…(I’m guessing) unassuming- and shrugged before bringing me back to the ‘special room’. So I was stuck in a room (not all that special) for a couple hours with several over-excited, glorified extras who were all practicing ‘their talent’ over and over again. (It was awesome slash the worse couple hours of my life…you know what I mean if you’ve ever been trapped in a small space with eager actors. Like a vampire or a shark, they can smell the blood and turn into life-sucking, hyperactive children.)
They began rolling film and it was my turn.
“And what’s you’re talent?”
“Oh. Um, I can do upside down handstand wall push-ups”
(Again with the look)
So I found the closest wall, kicked off my heels, did a few and dismounted.
There was some silence, followed by some clapping and some thank you’s and then I just sorta walked away. (I had had a few beers by that point, as being a part of a TV taping audience takes all day, and they ‘don’t discourage you from getting a little sauced during your lunch break’…I’m sure it makes for a happier audience.)
And that was it. We listened to Betty White (one of my heros) give out dating advice, Steve Carell talk about getting his chest hair ripped off for the 40 Year Old Virgin and listened to the John Mayer Trio perform Who Did You Think I Was
And me? I was the small and (I’m guessing) unassuming red head who was tipsily upside down for a little while.
So today, on Workout Wednesday, I’m bringing back the upside down handstand wall push-up. It is an incredible upper body workout. I do as many as 15-20, but even the few I shot in the video below is enough to get the blood pumping. It’s just something I do from time to time when I wanna feel like a superhero. Like most of my workouts, this doesn’t take up much time, doesn’t require any special equipment…just a wall (public or private), clothes that stay put (if you’re public), and most importantly, the desire to be upside down for a little while.