On March 15th we celebrate the 84th birthday of the legendary Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
In 1993, Ruth Bader Ginsburg became the second female justice appointed to the Supreme Court of the United States. While she’s been in the public eye for awhile it was in 2015 that she became a viral sensation becoming known amongst millennials as “Notorious R.B.G.” The term was created by a law student who jokingly called her that on the internet one day which caught on.
She is generally viewed as more liberal and is known as a advocate for women’s rights. R.B.G. attended Cornell University located in Ithaca, New York. Before becoming a Supreme Court justice, she spent a lot of her time in the legal profession. She also was a professor at Rutgers School of Law, located in Newark, New Jersey; and also Columbia Law School.
She was appointed by President Jimmy Carter to the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in 1980. She then was a volunteer lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union.
Why We Love The Notorious R.B.G.
Ruth Bader Gingsburg co-founded the first law review on women’s issues, Women’s Rights Law Reporter, and co-authored the first law school case book on sex discrimination. She argued six gender discrimination cases before the Supreme Court between 1973 and 1976, and winning five. R.B.G. is also a two-time cancer survivor.
Asked earlier this month about the most important person in her life, Ginsburg, responded, “My personal trainer.” She may be older but, she is not weak. Her trainer, Bryant Johnson, age 52, keeps R.B.G. in shape. After the 2016 presidential election, it has caused her much anxiety but she vowed, quoted in Politico Magazine, “I will do this job as long as I can do it full steam.”
R.B.G Gym Workout With Bryant Johnson
According to Politico Magazine, Bader works out with Johnson twice a week, on the days that are convenient for both of them. They spend roughly about an hour each per session and start around 7:00 in the evening located in a gym near the Supreme Court. She also listens to PBS and NewsHour while she exercises.
They start off on the elliptical for five minutes, with Johnson by her side in case any off-balance occurs. After the elliptical, they do a light stretch together.
Then comes the difficult part, the strength training. They perform three sets of 10 to 13 reps, depending on Johnson’s judgment in what R.B.G. is ready for that specific day. The next part of the strength training is the machine bench press; Ginsburg usually lifts 70 pounds.
Next, comes leg curls and leg presses, chest flies and lat pull-downs, all performed on various machines that concentrate certain muscle movements. These can be performed sitting or standing. R.B.G. also performs one-legged squats doing 10 times for 3 reps.
Georgetown Law Professor Mary Hartnett who quoted justice Ginsburg in Politico magazine stated, “Justice Ginsburg does 10 pushups and she does not do the so-called ‘girl pushups.” This workout may seem long, however there is more! Next comes, 30 second planks, which might I add, as a 19 year-old woman, I can not even do that.
After planking, they use a exercise ball together to perform shoulder and arm exercises together. R.B.G. pumps 12 twelve pounds using dumbbells.
Towards the end of the exercise, Johnson’s likes to do leg exercises for flexibility. Johnson set up a platform to step up on it while raising my knees and performing a variety of movements. Johnson also conducts leg exercises on the floor as well as while standing.
Last but not least, Johnson has Bader sit on a bench while holding a medicine ball, then stand up, toss the ball to Johnson and sit back down again, and repeat.
In late November 2014, R.B.G. felt a little faint during a workout session with her regular personal trainer and had surgery so a stent could be placed in her right coronary.
A month later, she invited Shana, Frank Chi, Aminatou Sow, and Ankur Mandhania, the creators of the term “Notorious R.B.G.” to chambers. They wanted a message to all the people who admire her after her heart stent procedure. She said, ““You can tell them,” she replied, “I’ll be back doing push-ups next week.”
She does this workout with Johnson to keep her mind, body, and emotional health pristine so she can keep fighting for women’s right despite the challenging times ahead with our new President.
“My Own Words”
In early 2016 came out with a book, called “My Own Words.” New York Times ranked in No.12 on the hardcover non-fiction list in October 2016. The book is largely about her passion of law, her extensive career and the inner circle of the court.
One of Ginsburg’s favorite life advice came from her mother-in-law on Ginsburg’s wedding day, she reportedly told the crowd: “In every good marriage, it helps sometimes to be a little deaf.”.
She also applies this to her profession as well. “I have followed that advice assiduously, and not only at home through 56 years of a marital partnership nonpareil. I have employed it as well in every workplace, including the Supreme Court,” she said. “When a thoughtless or unkind word is spoken, best tune out. Reacting in anger or annoyance will not advance one’s ability to persuade.”
Notorious R.G.B. is a woman who defies the odds.
“We should not be held back from pursuing our full talents, from contributing what we could contribute to the society, because we fit into a certain mold ― because we belong to a group that historically has been the object of discrimination.”
“My mother told me two things constantly. One was to be a lady, and the other was to be independent. The study of law was unusual for women of my generation. For most girls growing up in the ’40s, the most important degree was not your B.A., but your M.R.S.”
“Women will have achieved true equality when men share with them the responsibility of bringing up the next generation.”
Happy Birthday Ruth Bader Gingsburg!