Video Review: The Original Buns of Steel with Greg Smithey

Let’s talk about my butt.

I have many wonderful qualities but my butt isn’t one of them. I’m one of those “apple-shaped” women: skinny arms and legs, thick middle, flat butt. (Fortunately I have a sparkly personality to compensate but whatever.)

Seriously, having a flat butt is a problem. My weak glutes have caused my hips to be unstable, causing iliotibial (IT) band tightness and preventing me from running. And let’s not even talk about jeans shopping.

I wanted a lower-body focused workout so, thanks to Google, I came across the The Original Buns of Steel with Greg Smithey. The video is hilarious, campy and (pardon the pun) a butt-kicking great workout.


Favorite line: “We’re going to squeeze those cheeseburgers right out of your hips!”


Made in 1987, the 49-minute video is a step back into aerobics history. Spandex leotards, slouch socks, high-top Reeboks—they’re all here. And let’s not forget the terrycloth headbands, which everyone wears to keep their teased bangs from flopping into their black-lined eyes.

The nine-minute aerobic warm up feels a little long but contains progressive dynamic stretches, pushups and tricep dips. The second time I did the workout I added hand weights, which made it more challenging.

The 38-minute floor work is where “the magic happens” as instructor (and former world class pole vaulter) Greg Smithey says. We worked the glutes and inner thighs with many, many reps of exercises like leg lifts and hydrants. By the time we got to the ab crunches at the end, my butt was burning and I was ready for the two-minute stretch. I was sore the next day.


You don’t need any equipment for this workout and the floor exercises really do target all the muscles in the glutes. It’s no wonder the video has gotten 5 out of 5 stars on many workout video review sites.


I will not lie: the video is dated. It has a bad soundtrack and Chuck Norris lookalike Smithey uses outmoded words like “buns” and “stomach muscles.” Although personable and upbeat (and look at that sassy kerchief!), Smithey focuses a lot on looking good (“for us and our loved ones”) and building a “beautiful body” and “beautiful thighs!” to point where it gets creepy.


I haven’t found another video with a better butt segment than this one so I’m going to keep doing it. In the future, though, I’ll probably just do the floor work and skip the rest.

If you’ve done this video tell us about it (or, if you happen to have Buns of Steel, tell us how you got them.) Leave a Comment or send an email to

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