Acknowledging The All-Time Greats

The great Jim Thorpe, who I previously wrote about, was indeed the greatest all-around athlete of all-time. However, the one and only Jack LaLanne was the greatest fitness athlete of all-time. I feel sorry for the current generation who probably, if at all, only associate his name with the nice little old man in the jumpsuit selling the juice machine on infomercials. Jack LaLanne was one of the finest physical specimens and exhibitors of extraordinary feats of physical strength that this planet has ever or will ever know. Starting out as a sickly and poorly nourished youth, his transformation was indeed phenomenal. After becoming a health and fitness convert at the age of 15, he is credited with opening the first modern health club in the U.S. at age 21. He invented several pieces of exercise equipment that are still utilized in health clubs to this very day. Jack LaLanne dedicated his entire life to physical strength and fitness. Every year from 1954 to 1984, for his birthday, he demonstrated that age was indeed just a number by publicly performing one of those unbelievable feats of strength and endurance. One example this being that at age 70 he towed 70 boats  filled with 70 people for over a mile across Long Beach Harbor while shackled! His tremendous physique won him the Professional Mr. America title in 1955. But he became best known for appearing on The Jack LaLanne Show, the first television exercise show. Everyday for over thirty years he would entice housewives and anyone else in front of the t.v. across the country to get up and join him in a daily workout. It was my own first exposure to fitness and exercise as a child, and watching the rock solid strong man full of pep and vitality encouraging everyone to get up and join him convinced me. I have done my best to follow his example of daily exercise, dietary supplementation, and healthy eating ever since. Jack lived well into his nineties and maintained his rigorous exercise routine throughout his life. He passed in 2011 at the age of 96. His family reported he worked out the day before his passing. He was famous for saying that he couldn’t die because it would ruin his image. Jack LaLanne was the true Godfather of Fitness and indeed the greatest fitness athlete of all-time.