Sunday, January 30, 2011

Honoring Jack LaLanne

"It's no mystery. It's no big secret. It's just as easy as one, two, three - eat healthy, exercise and be positive."
Jack LaLanne

Relentlessly inspiring people to push themselves, Jack LaLanne often did the impossible. His feats of strength, endurance and willpower still defy the imagination. Jack wanted to test himself and to motivate people to get in shape, eat healthfully and feel good.

At age 43, towing a 2,500-pound cabin cruiser, Jack swam the Golden Gate Channel. The cold, swift ocean currents made this 1 mile swim a 6 ½ mile test of strength and endurance. On his 61st birthday, he swam the length of the Golden Gate Bridge (1.7 miles), underwater with 2 air tanks, for a second time, handcuffed, shackled and towing a 1,000-pound boat. Still challenging himself at 70 years old, he towed 70 boats with 70 people from the Queen's Way Bridge in the Long Beach Harbor to the Queen Mary, 1½ miles. Again he increased the difficulty by being handcuffed, and shackled. Unbelievable but true.

Jack's message was consistent. If you don't use it, you will lose it, and it is never to late to get into shape and be healthy. As a kid, Jack was out of shape and overweight. But after hearing a nutritionist speak, he started exercising and eating whole, unprocessed foods. His headaches and anger disappeared, and he felt like he was reborn. Ultimately practicing good health leads us to our highest potential and Jack was the living example of this truth.

A pioneer, a man with a vision and ahead of his time, he started the first fitness gym. Back in the 1940's and 50's doctors believed that working out with weights would give people heart attacks. But Jack lived to be 96, lifting weights until he died of pneumonia. His book "Live Young Forever" was published when he was 95.

A true yogi lives a life of dedication, discipline, service, and integrity. Jack LaLanne was bringing these principles of yoga into the American mainstream way before yoga became popular in the USA. On your mat is the perfect place to practice these principles with the intention to bring them more fully into your life off the mat. Be curious about your body. Feel as many muscles as you can imagine. As Jack said, know that your body is a temple of the divine. So respect it. Listen to it. Learn from it. Give your yoga practice your full attention and test your limits within your practice. Engage your muscles deeply, breathe fully, live completely in the present moment.

There is a deep truth to Jacks words, "I have a spiritual experience all the time! When I wake up in the morning, man, I'm telling you—I have hands, I have feet, and I praise that omnipotent power that gave them to me, whatever it is. We don't know what it is, but we've got to know that there is some power that's beyond our comprehension.
" When you open yourselves to that power that lives in you, around you and through you, you open to a world of magic, power and beauty.

No comments:

Post a Comment