Anaconda troops get Tae Bo workout with creator

By Spc. Steven J. Schneider
28th Public Affairs Detachment

LOGISTICS SUPPORT AREA ANACONDA, Iraq — Some troops from LSA Anaconda had a special kind of work out Sept. 25 and 26 in the form of kicks, knees and punches.

Billy Blanks, inventor of Tae Bo, visited here and instructed three classes in two days on how to do his aerobic workout.

"When you're doing an aerobics class, think of the floor as being hot," Blanks said during his first workout session. Thinking of the floor as being hot keeps the feet moving and keeps muscles in action, he said. This is important to get the full effect.

The Blanks workout was good not only for the cardiovascular level but also for the muscular strength level, said Pfc. Aaron Parker, 1467th Transportation Company.

"I worked out a lot of different muscles I don't normally work out," said Spc. Adelle Anclard, 1467th Transportation Company. "I don't normally tend to do a total body workout."

Parker said he plans to continue with the Tae Bo workout because it's the best workout he's ever had.

"It was extreme," he said. "It was definitely harder than anything I've ever done even in basic. I like it because it's different and it breaks the monotony of regular workouts."

Those who participated were rewarded with almost nonstop action for nearly an hour as Blanks moved them from one exercise to the next.

Many Soldiers had to take a break and grab some water during the session.

The key to being in shape is to overcome pain through willpower and determination, Blanks said while talking with the troops after a Tae Bo class.

"Where I am today is where my mind put me, and where I am tomorrow is where my mind puts me," Blanks said.

Maj. Kelly Hilland, 56th Personnel Support Battalion, demonstrated how spirit can overcome pain by staying in a crouched position for the class. Hilland said it was a painful experience, but she got through it mentally.

"I was a little bit excited because I'd never been called out in front of everybody like that before," she said.

Blanks said the key to all success lies in determination.

"If your mind can't take it, I know your body can't take it," he said.

The Soldiers attending the class felt his words were good words to live by.

"What he said was very inspirational," Hilland said. "I'm going to take what he said and cherish and use it the rest of the time I am here."

Blanks was as impressed with the Soldiers as they were with him.

"To stand before you all is a privilege and an honor," Blanks said.

Blanks said he tells people, "The troops are heroes. They got the guts to go over (in harms way) and do what they're doing."

The Soldiers of LSA Anaconda are just happy someone is taking a notice of their work.

"It's always nice to see someone, who appreciates what we do, come out here," Anclard said.

(Editor's note: Schneider is a member of the 28th Public Affairs Detachment and a staff writer with the Anaconda Times at LSA Anaconda, Iraq)


news photo
Service members packed the Anaconda Fitness Center Aerobics Room Sept. 25 to have a chance to meet and train with Billy Blanks. Blanks visited LSA Anaconda Sept. 25 and 26.

news photo
Shellie Blanks Cimarosti shows how to bring someone heavier in weight down by flipping Tae Bo Instructor Billy Blanks Sept. 25 at LSA Anaconda. Blanks gave three classes on Tae Bo in two days at the Anaconda Fitness Center. Blanks visited LSA Anaconda Sept. 25 and 26.