16 Crazy Vintage Fitness Ads


Fitness has always been an important aspect of staying in shape, but the way it was portrayed in the past wasn’t always so nice…. We hope today’s world is more accepting of different body types and less critical.  But, we also think there’s nothing wrong with a girl putting on a few pounds instead of being too skinny.  These ads will make you laugh your head off.  Here’s 16 crazy vintage fitness ads.

1. Women were encouraged to gain weight, instead of losing it

Being too thin was seen as a turn off to men and women yearned to put on some extra weight— especially in their ‘curvy spots,’ like their bust, hips and legs.

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2. Women were compared to Marilyn

Ah, the iconic Marilyn Monroe, who was most definitely not a size 4 in anything clothing-wise and whose curves sent the nation into a frenzy.  She made other women look like drowned rats in their swimsuits.

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3. Vintage fitness machines for men

Men were expected to be naturally brawny and strong and to have a lean muscular physique.  Men who didn’t naturally look like this were sold on cheesy workout equipment that didn’t do much for them.

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4. Flesh reducer

This rubber contraption helped get rid of your fleshy spots— like ankles, bras, and even chins.  This was like the early version of a sweat suit.

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We hope today’s world would agree that this is wrong.  Please don’t get a tape worm so you can eat whatever you want.  That’s not good.  Not good for your health and certainly not a good way to balance your weight.

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6. Be fit and slim with bile beans!

Just the name of this ‘supplement’ makes us want to go throw up.

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7. Awesome vintage workout equipment

You can find all of these items and more in your 1970’s Sears Roebuck catalog.  I’m pretty sure you can find most of these machines in my grandma’s basement. 

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8. Electric belt for weak men

I’m pretty sure if you’re a weakling, a buzzing belt around your middle isn’t going to do very much for you.

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9. Jazzercise!

This is truly the best of the 70’s, isn’t it?  That’s when the whole Jazzercise thing became so popular.

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10. Slim gym

It’s like a lounge chair that you do crunches in.  Trust me, this thing was used for way more than just a sit-up chair.

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11. Beauti-bells

It’s like the early version of weight-lifting for women…but the weights are super light.

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12. More weight gain

After gaining a mere 10 pounds, this woman gets all the dates she wants!  Isn’t that crazy?  Girls nowadays would do anything to lose 10 pounds!

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13. 2-for-1 fitness

Our favorite part of this ad is the woman in the middle, just showing off her ample bosom….

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14. Old time Got Milk ad

This vintage milk ad goes over the ways that your body should move and stretch and how to stay healthy.

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15. Getting pumped is wicked

The look of intense concentration on this girls’ face is truly wicked.

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16. A look at the world’s first treadmills

Doesn’t that look super fun and safe to run on??