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Jack LaLanne fitness guru and godfather of the modern health & exercise movement

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Courtesy Elaine LaLanne
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Jack LaLanne (right center with Elaina LaLanne (left center) on the Les Malloy Show airing on KGO TV in San Francisco circa-1951.

Correspondent Tom Wilmer visits with Elaine LaLanne at her ranch in Morro Bay, California where she shares tales of her husband Jack LaLanne’s incredible life journey (1914-2011).

Jack LaLanne on-air.jpeg
Courtesy Elaine LaLanne
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Jack LaLanne fitness legend.

LaLanne’s career started in downtown Oakland, California when he opened the first modern health spa in 1936—serving as the incubator that transformed the health and wellness industry forever.

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Courtesy Elaine LaLanne
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in 1954 Jack LaLanne swam handcuffed from Alcatraz Island to Fisherman’s Wharf.

Equally fascinating is the story of how Elaine LaLanne was an amazing trendsetter in her own right.

Elaine became one of the first on-air hosts in television history when she signed on in 1951 to become a co-host on The Les Malloy variety show airing over KGO TV ABC Channel 7 in San Francisco.

In the early 1950s, Jack LaLanne showcased his message for health and fitness to the American public with the advent of "The Jack LaLanne Show".

His syndicated show was broadcast across the country and overseas--airing continuously for 34 years.

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Courtesy Elaine LaLanne
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Jack LaLanne filming one of his syndicated exercise TV shows.

Come along and join Elaine “LaLa” LaLanne to learn the rest of the story.

A mere snippet of Jack LaLanne’s amazing accomplishments includes his 1954 world record for swimming the length of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, entirely underwater while towing 140 pounds of equipment including air tanks.

The same year he swam handcuffed from Alcatraz Island to Fisherman’s Wharf.

In 1974, he once again swam from Alcatraz to Fisherman’s Wharf this time handcuffed and shackled while towing a 1,000-pound boat.

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Courtesy Elaine LaLanne
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At age 70, once again shackled and handcuffed, LaLanne towed 70 boats with 70 people in Long Beach Harbor, swimming one and a half miles from a bridge to the Queen Mary

At age 70, once again shackled and handcuffed, LaLanne towed 70 boats with 70 people in Long Beach Harbor, swimming one and a half miles from a bridge to the Queen Mary.

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Tom Wilmer produces on-air content for Issues & Ideas airing over KCBX and is producer and host of the six-time Lowell Thomas award-winning NPR podcast Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer. Recorded live on-location across America and around the world, the podcasts feature the arts, culture, music, nature, history, science, wine & spirits, brewpubs, and the culinary arts--everything from baseball to exploring South Pacific atolls to interviewing the real Santa Claus in the Arctic.