For Those About to Rock: 15 Workout Outfits that Symbolized the 80s

Ah the 80s, when physical fitness first came into the forefront of the American consciousness. It was in that glorious decade that the bombardment of various late-night infomercials with zany products designed to make you slim and trim truly hit its highest. With it came a variety of new exercise routines, fitness centers and of course, VHS tapes of weight loss gurus.

Perhaps the biggest part of the 80s fitness craze was the influx of tight spandex gear designed to make you look like an idiot while you worked out.

Sweatbands, headbands, leg warmers… wait, why did people ever work out in leg warmers? Who knows, but today we take a look at the 15 most 80s workout outfits of all time. Get ready for some bright spandex attires and short-shorts!

15. Jack LaLanne Speed Suit

Jack LaLanne had been teaching us about physical fitness since the atomic age, but in the 1980s he decided to up the ante with full on spandex speed suits for his VHS workout tapes.


I don’t know much about working out, but I know Jack is certainly happy around these ladies in his speed suit. I hope that’s a juicer in his pocket!


14. Raquel Welch – Original MILF

Although she was already old enough to be a grandma, in 1988 Raquel Welch was making us drool and trying to teach us to lose 10 pounds in 3 weeks.

Raquel welch

I have no idea if the workout was any good, but her tight purple spandex leotard was enough to make everyone interested in getting in shape!


13. Clint Eastwood – Grandpa’s Physical Fitness

Decades before he argued with chairs, Clint was in full “old man crazy” mode with his 1980’s workout attire.


While everyone else was in spandex and shorts, Clint decided to workout in his winter sweats. Oh grandpa, you’re so crazy! The lady next to him had a better idea though as sports bras never lost their appeal, providing a great look and proper support for when you exercise. On the other hand, the rest of her attire seems quite uncomfortable!


12. Corey Everson – Cheetah Lady

One of the first women to emphasize her muscles, Corey Everson always made a splash in the gym.

Corey Everson

Here she accents her Tarzan inspired outfit with a belt, but not the weightlifting kind. She’s got great uh, biceps!


11. Mr. T – Fool Pity’n Casual

Mr. T made his everyday gear into the ultimate workout attire. Cut off belly shirts, 100 pounds of gold chains and a weight lifting belt for support. Wear it to the office or to the gym! Who wouldn’t want to hit the town looking like this?



10. Mark Gastineau – Belly Shirt

He can lift weights and the ladies. The NFL’s infamous Mark Gastineau showed us that just because you’re a man doesn’t mean you can’t wear 3/4’s of a shirt and some shorts that ride up your ass crack.

Mark Gastineau

His gal pal adds to the authenticity with a totally 80s headband and not much else!


9. Heather Locklear – Leotard and Pants

Leotards were all the rage in the 80s, but Heather showed us that just because she wasn’t wearing spandex didn’t mean she couldn’t bring it.

heather locklear

Add in some leg warmers and an absolutely tiny waist belt and you’ve got a fitness outfit that even T.J. Hooker would approve of.


8. Markie Post – Radical Retro

You may know her as Christine Sullivan from Night Court, but in the 80s she rocked this radical fitness outfit.

Markie Post

With hair like a Hologram and more cleavage than Gold’s Gym can legally allow, Markie hit just about every 80’s fitness fashion note. Eat your heart out Dan Fielding!

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