Ask Rocco: 04/14

When did having a nice ass qualify you as a fitness expert?

By Rocco Castellano

There is an amazingly insane trend that has been happening over the past five years or so, and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down. Everywhere you look, people that can barely spell “fitness” are becoming fitness celebrities because they have a nice body, or work out in their underwear. This trend started back in 2008, when “BodyRockTV” hit YouTube and every prepubescent boy and maybe girl, was checking out Zuzana Marjova, an ex-porn star turned barbell bunny.

She did everything she could but suck the chrome off the bar to make you watch her exercise … and you did. Millions and millions of you, to be exact. It doesn’t really surprise me that idiots across the globe follow her and think she’s an awesome fitness guru. Shit, people still think you can lose inches by wrapping yourself up like a mummy. So stupidity and body envy not withstanding, the only professional qualifications she holds is that she’s had more members in her mouth than Planet Fitness has Tootsie Rolls. What produces this phenomenon? In my opinion, the wheels have come off the cart.

There are no real leaders to look to anymore. Most of us who have been in the business for so long have just become jaded and keep to ourselves.

OK, not me, but many of my contemporaries have just stepped back, out of the spotlight and watch as the industry we’ve built with – literally – our blood, sweat and tears crumbles at our feet. Meanwhile, the ever-so-gullible populous eats up every bit of T&A their little eyeballs can gather. People cried, mostly women, when Marjova the porn star and her husband, a part-time floral arranger and amateur filmmaker, Freddie Light broke up. I’m still laughing at why and who gives a shit. I guess it still fascinates me how our society is degrading as every year goes by. People just keep getting dumber and number.

I can remember when I was a kid watching my mother do her exercises every morning to Jack Lalanne. One of Jack’s inspirational stories would be a great start to your day. We all laughed at Jane Fonda’s hip thrust workouts and Suzanne Sommers’ late night “Thighmaster” fests, but that was all innocent shit compared to the workout videos these so-called “fitness celebrities” are giving you now.

Now we have a newcomer on the “fitness celebrity” stage and her name is Jen Selter, a 21-year-old woman who has become famous for taking selfies of her ass. She’s amassed millions of followers on Instagram and is being touted as a fitness guru. What the f— does having a nice ass have to do with being a fitness guru – especially at 21?

I literally have workout clothes with that many years and more workout experience.

Malcolm Gladwell wrote in his best seller, “Outliers,” that in order to become an expert and to move with authority in your profession you need to put 10,000 hours of experience in that profession behind you. That translates to about five years, give or take.

So, of course, what an asshole I am. She must have been working with some of the top fitness people or top personal trainers in the world since she was 15 or 16 to get all that experience. If we do the math, 10,000 hours would be a little over 2,000 hours a year, for five years if she worked a 40-hour workweek. So she didn’t go to school; she slaved working in sweaty gyms, looking for the chance to meet some of the greatest trainers who I have had the honor to help put into the Fitness Hall of Fame with my good friend and real fitness expert, John Spencer Ellis. People with names like Eric Cressey, Cassandra Forsythe, John Defendis … names that don’t automatically come to mind but are real experts in their field, have put more than their 10,000 hours worth of time to represent the monikers, “fitness expert,” “fitness guru” or, like my friend Paul Gagne calls himself, “physical preparator.”

I’m pretty sure none of them take selfies, or in Jen Selter’s case, “belfies” of their asses for all to see on social media.

No, they relied on hard work, great results and an insatiable appetite for knowledge.

Jen Selter relied on good genetics, having a 21-year-old ass, an iPhone and an insatiable appetite for accolades on how “hot” her ass is to qualify herself as the next big fitness guru.

Let me explain something to the people who don’t have all their lights on. There is no way in anyone’s imagination a 21-year-old could know enough to do a squat correctly, let alone tell millions of people how to get “in the best shape of their lives.” Sorry, it just doesn’t happen that way. And when the accolades die down and another 21-year-old that wants to show us her cleavage while doing jumping jacks via social media comes along, Miss Jen Selter will just be another ass on Instagram. Hopefully Dr. Drew Pinsky can revive Celebrity Rehab just in time to catch this “fitness guru” as she’s falling headlong into substance abuse. Dr. Drew, get the bed ready.

The views and opinions expressed in Ask Rocco are the views and/or opinions of the author and do not reflect the views and/or opinions of the Dayton City Paper or Dayton City Media and are published strictly for entertainment purposes.

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Rocco Castellano is the author of “askROCCO Uncensored v1,” a speaker and a controversial fitness personality who has won an Emmy for his fitness training role in MTV’s Made. For more information, please visit roccocastellano.com.

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