Jack LaLanne, the Godfather of fitness and health, has passed away at the age of 96. The man who brough fitness and health to households long before it became a cottage inductry has passed.
Rest in Peace
The man who for 70 years has told Americans to eat healthy, pump iron, lose weight and exercise has died from respiratory failure due to pneumonia in his Morro Bay, CA home Sunday afternoon. The fitness pioneer revolutionized the way we looked at health and fitness. Jack LaLanne is survived by his wife Elaine, his two sons Dan and Jon, and a daughter, Yvonne.
“The Jack LaLanne Show”
This is a nation of tired people,” he said, in an effort to encourage people to exercise. “Everyone is suffering from that chronic disease that I like to call pooped-out-itis.”
“Inactivity is a killer,” LaLanne once said. “The only way you can hurt the body is not use it.”
LaLanne was a fitness pioneer, opening the first of his many exercise studios in 1936. He focused on weight-training at a time when the idea of pumping iron was strictly taboo, especially for women.
“You have to understand that it was absolutely forbidden in those days for athletes to use weights. It just wasn’t done. We had athletes who used to sneak into the studio to work out,” he once said.
Athletic trainers believed bulking up would slow athletes down and women were supposed to look curvy and feminine, not athletic and toned.
“Back then, women weren’t supposed to use weights. I guess I was a pioneer,” LaLanne said.
LaLanne spent decades talking about the healthful benefits of exercise and fitness. He opened his own health spa in California in 1936, years before the fitness craze swept the United States. LaLanne even designed the world’s first leg-extension machine, along with several other pieces of fitness equipment now standard in the fitness industry.
He was born in San Francisco on September 26, 1914. A self-confessed sugar- and junk-food addict as a child, he went on to study bodybuilding and weight-lifting by the time he was in his late teens.
Jack’s wife of 51 years, Elaine LaLanne said in a statement: “I have not only lost my husband and a great American icon, but the best friend and most loving partner anyone could ever hope for.”