When body builder Jack Lalane opened his ﬁrst health club in Oakland, California in 1936, he was called a “nut”.
His combination of nutritional advice, weight training, and calisthenics were unheard of at the time. But, soon he had a national exercise program on TV that ran a full 34 years turning him into a national icon. Most of his concepts are now so widely accepted that it is hard to imagine that they were once considered “radical” – avoiding processed foods, cutting down on meat, eating massive amounts of vegetables, cross-training, targeting speciﬁc sets of muscles and using repetitions and muscle fatigue to build strength.
He was perhaps best-known for his annual feats of strength. At the age of 42, for example, he did 1033 push-ups in 23 minutes. He followed that the next year by swimming the 1,6 km Golden Gate channel towing a 1,000 kilo boat.
He did his daily workout until the day before his death in 2011 at the age of 96. He was fond of saying, “I’d hate dying; it would ruin my image.”