The personable, larger-than-life fitness guru and anti-sugar pioneer Jack LaLanne passed away recently at the age of 96.
What was so remarkable about the Superman-like Jack LaLanne was not that he lasted into his 90s but that the energetic, effervescent health aficionado knew how to live well.
Decades before Americans realized the value of fitness, Jack opened his first own health spa and, of course, worked out regularly himself.
What’s more, decades before people knew that sugar was bad for you, Jack spurned the sweet stuff. (Actually, people are still waking up to sugar’s dangers, which is now keeping me busy.)
More importantly, because of Jack LaLanne’s determination to stay healthy, fit and happy, he thrived. The idea of “just surviving” or “getting by” was completely foreign to him.
I mean, the “Godfather of Fitness” really lived, as I’ve had the pleasure of witnessing. Listen to my Tribute Show now, where you’ll hear him in action.
That’s because, in recent years, since becoming an anti-sugar advocate, I’ve had the honor and pleasure of interviewing Jack LaLanne several times.
First, in 2004 or 2005, he took time out for an interview for my book, Sugar Shock. (For those of you who have my book, please turn to page 139, where you can read his compelling sugar story.)
Then, in May 2008, Jack graciously appeared on my radio show as part of my 10 Years’ Sugarfree Celebration.
You can catch our interview now –– it’s part of my Tribute to the Fitness & Anti-Sugar King.
At the time, Jack had been off of sugar for a whopping 80 years! (FYI, my show was then called the Stop Sugar Shock Radio Show, not the Gab with the Gurus Radio Show, which is what it’s called now. Special thanks to BlogTalkRadio for featuring that interview with Jack LaLanne.)
I was invited to interview Jack and to present him with a Lifetime Achievement Award at a Obesity and Food Addiction Addition Summit on IslandWood, Bainbridge Island. What a treat that was! (You can watch the program here.)
Granted, I wasn’t a close personal friend of Jack’s, but from our few times chatting, what struck me about this amazing man was his infectious enthusiasm, his remarkable power to motivate people, his deep-seated joie do vivre (gusto for life), his diehard commitment to a healthy lifestyle, and his profound love and admiration for his wife Elaine (to whom he was married for 51 years).
Jack LaLanne also had a gleeful, “I’ll-show-you-how-much-a-man-can-do” attitude, which, of course, led him to perform quite amazing feats, which I recounted on my Sugar Shock Blog.
As I take some time out from writing my next book, Beyond Sugar Shock, to reflect on this magnificent, inspiring man, I’ve trying to think of how best to pay tribute to Jack LaLanne.
What I’ve concluded is this: Each and every one of us should honor Jack by living gloriously and cleanly, as he did.
In other words, fellow Americans — or people around the world — let’s get off our tushes now. In short, let’s exercise often. No excuse is good enough, as Jack pointed out.
And ditch the sugar, which can, to put it bluntly, kill you if you consume too much of the stuff. (Almost all of you fit into that category, as The Dr. Oz Show pointed out last week.)
For that matter, let me scare you more. Your excess sugar intake can trigger heart disease, type 2 diabetes and cancer so there’s a good chance you won’t make it anywhere near 96 like Jack.
Now, let’s all honor Jack LaLanne by making plans to get on a regular work-out regimen.
And please, I implore you, also in his honor, get on the White-Out Wagon — in short, quit the nasty White Substance, sugar, that can cut your life short.
Now, I invite you to listen to my Tribute Show.
And now I encourage you to watch what Jack said about sugar years ago, on his “Jack LaLanne Show.”
Finally, I encourage you to listen to my radio interview with Jack LaLanne.