Wiggling Back Into Shape
Written by: Cary Castagna, QMI Agency
Aug 15, 2011
Eight years ago, Anthony Field was doing a lot less wiggling and a lot more jiggling.
Field, a founding member of the enormously popular Australian children’s group, The Wiggles, admits he had let himself get out of shape.
- “I just couldn’t keep up with the show”, he tells QMI Agency, noting he was sluggish, overweight and suffered chronic back pain.
- “I used to go backstage and lie down. Even sometimes during the show, I would have to go off because I was in so much pain. I had headaches and bad knees. I had a lot of inflammation all over my body from a poor diet.”
The blue Wiggle explains that back then, when he weighted a ‘puffy’ 215 pounds at about 5 foot 11, he was extremely uneducated about health and fitness. “I used to think, Oh, I’ll have a hamburger and if there was a bit of lettuce in it, well, that’s healthy. I really did think that”, he recalls with a laugh. “You just accept that, OK I’m 40, I’m fat and that it’s OK.
Except it was not OK.
His Dorothy the Dinosaure-like body was threatening to make his career as a superstar pre-school entertainer extinct.
The pivotal point in Field’s fat-to-fit journey came circa 2004, when he enlisted the help of celebrity Chicago chiropractor Dr James Stoxen DC.
- “He set me on the path to a real good way of looking at life and being able to carry out your normal daily functions and enjoy it because you feel better”, notes Field, now 48. The good doc’s advice helped the married father of three lose about 40 pounds, putting him at a sinewy 175. These days, Field maintains his weight at around 180.
- “For exercise, the doc told me I could do anti-gravity and bodyweight exercises to give me a leaner, longer body that can cope with dancing, jumping around and things like that”, he adds. “From that moment on, basically my exercises were on a gymnastics bar, or I use the rings and I support myself in all my exercises.”
This gymnastics-style-training, including one popular move called ‘Skin The Cat’, has strengthened his core big-time. As a result, his chronic back pain has vanished. It’s a workout routine that Field follows religiously despite the Wiggles hectic travel schedule that has the Fab Four from Down Under on the road eight months a year.
That means Field, who also streamlined his diet eight years ago, typically has to squeeze in a workout whenever he can.
The personable performer describes doing handstands using two chairs while watching TV in his hotel room and performing chin-ups with a portable bar propped near the top of the doorway.
- “I’ve also got these Free Form Boards that the Power Plate people put out. When i’m backstage, I get on my stomach, I support myself with the two of those and I move around like I’m surfing,” he laughs. “I’m like a total mad man, but I really enjoy it.”
And although he has access to the Wiggles Big Red Car, Field’s preferred mode of transportation is his fold-up bicycle, which always provides him with a good cardio workout.
“It’s a beautiful job we’ve got and we’re very lucky,” he says. “I don’t take it for granted and I want to keep doing it, That’s why I keep fit.”