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My Weekly Workout: Norma Kamali

Norma Kamali's weekly workout regimen
Kamali works out every day—and contributes to the fitness bills of her employees who work out 12 times or more per month. “I’ve noticed the best, most motivated, and accomplished staff work out regularly,” she says.

Debuting “My Weekly Workout,” a new feature that focuses on the fitness lives of intriguing people.

Farrah Fawcett’s red one-piece from the 1976 Charlie’s Angels poster and the sleeping bag coat spotted on oodles of fashionable New Yorkers come winter are just two of the iconic pieces designer Norma Kamali has contributed to the fashion hall-of-fame.

Only slightly lesser known than her iconic designs is Kamali’s dedication to health and fitness.

The healthy products she stocks at The Wellness Cafe at her 57th Street New York flagship is a reflection of her personal wellness pursuits—she eats organic, uses only natural skin-care products, and works out every single day. (Unless the universe foils her efforts with a super long meeting.)

Kamali’s workout of choice is Physique 57, a hot barre class that’s super popular with the fashion set. In fact, it might be her fitness obsession. Read on to find out what a week in Kamali’s workout life looks like. And check back for more “My Weekly Workouts.” —Jamie McKillop

Saturday: I went for a beach walk in the morning. I love the sound of the ocean and the sea air. I brought my dog Zeke and we both explored. Then I went to Physique 57 for a morning class in Bridgehampton. I’ve been going for more than five years and still feel challenged to get better form. After class, I had a green juice and some nuts. Back at home we recently put up a basketball hoop and I love the challenge of trying to get in as many baskets in a row as possible. I am heading towards 30. Lots of sweating and jumping—I love it! Later I went for another walk on the beach with my guy.

Sunday: I started the day with a walk on the beach. Then my friend Anne and I did back-to-back Physique 57 and a class at Norma Jean Pilates, a very cool place in Sag Harbor. The owner Hayley Schmitz is always adding new techniques to her repertoire. We headed home for more time on the beach and went for a long walk—forever talking and talking, until sunset.

Monday: My favorite time to work out is 4:45 p.m. Everything is flowing and my mind is calming down. Since my day at the office starts around 6:30 or 7:00 a.m., the afternoon’s the perfect time to run out to Physique 57. I go for a different level and instructor every time to keep me on my toes, so to speak. The workout can be extremely challenging and the technique keeps teaching you about your body.

Tuesday: I took a Mat 57 class at Physique 57. It’s a great ramped up, amped up version of Pilates, and is great training for the regular classes. Your abs get the core control needed to do almost anything. Also, I have a hula hoop and mini trampoline at home, so if I’m not going out to dinner and I’ll jump or hula hoop my way through a half hour or so of news.

Physique 57 Norma Kamali Wellness Cafe
A Physique 57 demo class at the Norma Kamali Wellness Cafe

Wednesday: I went to Mat 57 at Physique 57 at 4:45 p.m. again. It’s like brushing your teeth, having a consistent workout routine. Sometimes I’ll do a mat version of gyrotonics in Soho. I think this is such a great compliment to Physique 57 for stretching and extending the muscles.

Thursday: Today I went to Physique at 7:30 a.m., then I headed to [my Traditional Chinese Medicine doctor] Dr. Yang on West 57. After a 20 minute chat with him, he started to put in the acupuncture needles, and as the last one went in I fell asleep and stayed that way for the best 40-minute deep sleep rejuvenation ever.

Friday: I missed my workout because my meetings ran late. I was thrown off because my workout routine keeps me balanced, which you’ve probably figured out by now. I enlisted the fifth floor team, which is public relations, web and graphics, tech design, and two directors, to participate in a mini-workout with me. There’s a standard fitness belief that push-ups, crunches, and lunges are the simplest and most efficient way to get a total body workout without any equipment. So we got down on the floor and we went for it. It worked up a sweat—as well as a few office moans and groans. But after it was over we all felt better! Hmm…

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