“Flip Flop Abs” DVD, Fitzness.com and a powerful new me!

“Flip Flop Abs” DVD, Fitzness.com and a powerful new me!

Let’s not sugarcoat anything here.

I’m 61 years old.

I was a kid who played roller skating, swimming, sledding, hockey, softball, volleyball, basketball and the like – but very little of it was supervised or organized. It was a bunch of kids getting together and just doing things in the spur of the moment. My high school offered mostly intramural sports for girls while the boys were offered every sport imaginable.

Title IX wouldn’t come along ’til I was in college; Title IX, the law passed in 1972 that requires gender equity for boys and girls in every educational program that receives federal funding.

By 1972, I was focused on my career dream to become a high school English teacher. Exercise was waiting tables at a cocktail bar (don’t get me wrong; the walking, balancing, on-my-feet for hours was the most difficult exercise I’ve ever done).

I did become an English teacher, then a Reading Specialist, and dedicated 30 years to my work.

In 1976, I married Barry Couto, the most wonderful man on earth and together we raised 4 wonderful children. Barry was an athlete and this is one of the things I was most attracted to. I began to play again – he taught me tennis, golf, and we learned to ski together, too.

Our kids were enrolled in every single sports thing they wanted to try. Our lives became the endless perfection of following the boys at basketball, tennis, golf, skiing and the girls at swimming, field hockey, skiing, running. You name it, our kids tried it – and Barry played sports in lots of men’s leagues and I became the carpool Mom, loving every second of it.

Flash forward. Barry and I became grandparents. (We are currently expecting our 11th grandchild, due any day!)

And all that time I was itching to play. Really, really play.

That would happen in September of 2008 as I watched my children and my grandchildren participate in the CVS 5K Classic in downtown Providence. I will always remember that one moment when I thought to myself, “I’ll start running.” My play goal was to participate in running events with my kids, in-law kids and grandkids.

I did. That same night. I ran around my block and thought I would die.

But I kept running – playing like that kid I once was – and began challenging myself. 5Ks, 10K’s, Half Marathons, 2 Marathons, sprint triathlons, and a 70.3 Half Ironman in 2010- along with my daughter Jane, daughter-in-law Nicole and son Keith…

Jane, Nicole, Me, Keith
Jane, Nicole, Me, Keith

… finishing my swim to stand up and hear the beautiful word and question, “MOM?” as Jane stood up next to me and who began a full half hour after me!

Me, Jane
Me, Jane

I thought my Half Ironman was a one-and-done kinda thing. It was the best, the most perfect physical challenge of my life – open water 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike ride and 13.1 mile run. I had done it. Over. 8 hours and 1 minute of pure physical and mental challenge, finishing hours behind my kids. But finishing.

But, you know… things creep into your mind and once you know the wonder of play, you just can’t stop!

I’ve registered for the Endurafit Ironman 70.3 Eagleman in Cambridge, MD on June 8, 2014.

So let’s go back to me being 61 years old.

I don’t have all the strength I may once have had; and even at that, “strength” has come to mean so much more since the decades of my youth. I never strength-trained. I didn’t even know the term. I didn’t do any real strength-training for my 70.3 beyond miles of swimming, miles of biking and miles of running.

But I want to be a stronger player; a stronger, more injury-resistant athlete. I want to be playing ’til I’m 100.

Enter Fitz Koehler, founder of Fitzness.com and all-around powerhouse of phenomenal – and her complete core workout DVD Flip Flop Abs.

I met Fitz a couple of years ago while participating in a RunDisney Half Marathon. I was immediately taken by Fitz’s easy, fun, dynamic personality… and her passion for fitness with room for easy conversation. Fitz cares about people. She cares about promoting healthy lifestyles. She loves people. This is what I love the most about Fitz – she loves people; athlete or not, beginner or elite, young or old.

And it’s Fitz’s ease with people and her caring, fun, personality that brought me to a new level of caring about my core while being 61 and training for a Half Ironman!

I need core training.

Plain and simple.

I need strength. I need more power. I need a boost of confidence in my training.

As Fitz so perfectly says, “Flip Flop Abs is your first-class ticket to a rock-solid core.”

Well, I’m on that train.

I’ve added Flip Flop Abs to my training plan…


Fitz offers 3 Core Workouts: 1. The Sidewinder – 2. The Stinger – 3. The Whip –

Aptly named.

There is no fancy build-up. Just plain direction, in Fitz’s motivating, fun, dynamic way.

This is what I need. This is what I want.

No nonsense.

Fitz explains what’s coming, how many reps we’re doing, why we’re doing these things and how to modify for your individual level in her easy, excellent delivery… and offers her excellent website for nutrition and/or weight loss advice…


The DVD backdrop is visually appealing – clean and simple – and I love this. In each Core Workout, Fitz has invited 2 world-class athletes to follow along. This makes the workouts quite fun in my book because even these guys (I hesitate to use the word struggle, but maybe seem a bit more human) don’t look like dancing dolls like in some other workout DVDs.

I feel really OK with this!

Fitz smiles easily and speaks plainly while at the same time putting us through some intense moves.

I tried to photograph my own Stinger workout as I did my best to keep up with Fitz and Duane, a 100-mile marathoner and Chris, a 9-year NFL player…

Those blue polka-dot things would be my workout pants-
Those blue polka-dot things would be my workout pants-

Fitz had already informed her viewers that even 40% of the workout was OK to begin with. I think I’m up to 80%!


Yep. I discovered that it’s very difficult to take photos while doing Flip Flop Abs with Fitz.

I cannot say it myself better than how Fitz explains the power in these 3 Core Workouts: They target your abs, back and hips by combining an elite series of planks, side planks, bridges and creative crunches.

Important to ME is that it’s a great place for beginners, too.

I consider myself a beginner in this endeavor. I may have been running, swimming and biking for the past few years and a lover of play, but I’ve never taken the time or effort to build my body, my core, my strength in a deliberate, complete way.

Yes, at 61 years old.

This is a shaky selfie of me after I finished my first Flip Flop Abs “The Stinger” workout with Fitz in the little exercise space I’m carving into my home, into my day, into my training, into my very core for a powerful new me


Now that I have Fitz and her Flip Flop Abs, I’m on a new journey.

And with a big journey goal to Break 8 Hours at my upcoming Half Ironman.

Check out Flip Flop Abs. You will be amazed…IMG_8478

I’ve shown Fitz’s DVD to each of my 4 kids and 4 in-law kids and all are all-aboard for a new year of fitness.

My daughters and business partners and athletes Audrey and Jane are all-in to get into great core shape and strength again after babies – Audrey’s 5th baby is 6 months old and Jane is expecting her first baby any day!

I’d call this Family Fitzness!

Now I’ve gotta go do some laps at our YMCA.

About Audrey

Audrey McClelland has been a digital influencer since 2005. She’s a mom of 5 and shares tips on her three favorite things: parenting, fashion and beauty. She’s also a Contemporary Romance Author.

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  1. 1.22.14

    Amazing. I will be calling you to train for my tri next year, for sure!

  2. 1.22.14
    Sharon said:

    Hey, lovely! Maybe we can train together for something crazy! xo!

  3. 1.22.14

    ooooh, I may have to add this to my collection. I have a barre DVD that I love to do when the weather spoils other plans, and as muscle work, and I need a core workout. Thanks for sharing!

  4. 1.22.14

    I am so going to need this after baby #3! Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  5. 1.23.14

    My core is in desperate need of help. You are amazing! I can barely walk my kids to school and back.

  6. 1.23.14
    Shell said:

    I LOVE your story Sharon! This looks great, I need a good ab workout!

  7. 1.23.14
    Jane said:

    I cannot wait to do this DVD with you after the baby arrives! I want to get my abs back!

  8. 1.24.14

    I definitely need to work on my abs and core strength. Thanks! I’ll check this out! You are so fit and healthy!!

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