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About Jack LaLanne

As a kid, I fought bad allergies in addition to the regular childhood afflictions. This left me bed ridden more often than most. Even back then I preferred being outdoors, especially exploring a State Reserve that was literally in my back yard. The bright moments of these days when I was stuck in bed sick happened at 9 am in the morning, that’s when Jack La Lanne’s fitness show would come on the air. I would watch it on a little 12” black and white television that my parents would move into my room, when I was sick.

Jack’s boundless enthusiasm and energy would get me out of bed no matter how ill I was, and I would try as best I could to do what he encouraged. This experience lifted my spirits each and every time. So much in fact, I remember once thinking very briefly about feigning illness for the day so I could stay home from school and workout with Jack.

He is very different from the circus strong man that tries to prove he is stronger than you. Jack always made you feel like you could be as strong and healthy as him, if you just did what he did and ate what he ate. At age 6, this motivated me to create my own workout routine. It included running, jumping jacks, pushups and admittedly somewhat unconventionally the ring toss and bean bag throw. In addition, I always ate my vegetables with enthusiasm. When I grew up, I wanted to be just like Jack.

My story is only one example of the millions of lives that Jack La Lanne has touched over his career. Even in the brief time we spent with Jack, on an early very cloudy morning mid-week in early Fall, people seemed to come out of the wood work when they saw Jack. They all had a story about how he had helped them. One guy told Jack he inspired him to become a personal trainer. A woman said he had helped her lose weight after having a baby.

Sometimes when I get home from work tired from the day and procrastinating my workout, I think back to how Jack would get me out of bed when I was sick. Just the thought brings a smile to my face and motivates me to drag my rear off my couch and get into my workout gear. As I set off on my workout I think to myself as many others undoubtedly do, “today if I work out I can be just a little more like Jack”.

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