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The "godfather of fitness," Jack LaLanne, is known for his 1950s TV fitness program and for his endorsement of a power juicer in 2002.
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He gets up early and exercises for two hours - one hour of strength training and another hour of swimming. For breakfast, LaLanne has a protein shake. Fruit and egg whites are a typical lunch for him. Salad, brown rice, and grilled fish make up his usual dinner. LaLanne had not had sweets since he was a teenager and was vehemently opposed to eating dairy. "Am I a suckling calf? No other creature uses milk after they wean," LaLanne once told Sports Illustrated.
For several generations, people woke up and worked out with The Jack LaLanne Show, which aired Monday through Friday for more than 30 years. He told audiences to "get up, exercise, and feel good!" In the 1980s, however, he was eclipsed by other popular fitness personalities, such as Jane Fonda, who scored a huge success with her workout videos, and his show was cancelled. LaLanne continued to appear on television in infomercials, hawking a variety of fitness- and wellness-related products.
At a time when many might be slowing down, LaLanne proved how strong and healthy he was when he turned 70. He swam a 1.5-mile section of Long Beach Harbor while towing 70 people in 70 boats in 1984. If that was not enough, LaLanne was also handcuffed and shackled at the time.
In 2002, Jack LaLanne scored a big success by endorsing a juicer. More than a million Jack LaLanne Power Juicers were sold between 2002 and 2004, according to BusinessWeek magazine. In addition to the juicer, he lent his support to a line of swimming pools and sold an assortment of books, videos, and other products through his own website.
Not one to retire, LaLanne worked on the health and wellness channel of VoiceAmerica, an Internet radio network, with his wife Elaine. They hosted a weekly program called Jack LaLanne Live!, which also featured their nephew Chris LaLanne. He continued to be a sought-after expert well into his 90s, giving interviews on health and fitness to television and print journalists around the country.
During his impressive career, LaLanne received many accolades. He has his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame as well as the 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award from the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. LaLanne was also inducted into the Muscle Beach Venice Bodybuilding Hall of Fame in 2007.
Known as the "godfather of fitness," exercise expert Jack LaLanne passed away at his Morro Bay, California, home on January 23, 2011. He died of respiratory failure related to pneumonia, according to news reports. His wife released a statement on his passing, saying "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." The couple had been married for 51 years. In addition to his wife, LaLanne is survived by his three children.
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