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97-year-old fitness expert shares 'secret to living a healthy, youthful life'

October 30, 20233 min read

LaLanne News

This article was written by Diana Buntajova for the UK Express

UPDATED: 12:34, Tue, Oct 31, 2023

A 97-year-old fitness personality has shared 14 ways that could help you stay fit to 100.

Elaine LaLanne, also known as Lala, who will turn 98 in March, has been in the public eye for over 70 years, after she and her late husband, Jack LaLanne, revolutionised modern fitness in the 1950s and 1960s.

The pair highlighted the health benefits of regular exercise, good nutrition and a positive attitude for overall health.

Jack opened the first modern health club, known as Jack LaLanne’s Physical Culture Studio, in 1936, which became a prototype for dozens of similar gyms with his name. 

He was also the first person to have a national exercise TV show.

adly, Jack died in 2011 at the age of 96, but Elaine had no intention of retiring. She wrote a book about Jack’s life, Pride & Discipline, and is currently busy developing both a documentary and a feature film.

The 97-year-old shared with Telegraph what she owes to her long, healthy life and energy to keep going.

She told the newspaper: "People ask me the secret to living a healthy, youthful life in your 90s. My answer is simple: Exercise is King. Nutrition is Queen. Put them together and you have a Kingdom."

Afton McKeith, a leading fitness and movement coach, lauded Elaine's tips, adding: "You are never too old for anything."

She continued: "Elaine is beyond right that maintaining an active lifestyle, good nutrition and healthy amounts of sleep are key to having a better quality of life.

"In terms of fitness, a varied workout is ideal so that you can work different muscles and keep yourself motivated so that it doesn’t become boring. Focus on what is best for your body as your health is most important. Elaine is a testament to a healthy and long life."

Elaine and Jack

1. If you don’t move, you shrivel up

The fitness expert explained that you “speed up” the ageing process when you stop moving, making resistance training, body-weight exercises and sufficient protein intake a must. “In order to keep your mind active, you have to be active,” Elaine said.

2. Mix up your exercise

From stretches to golf and cleaning your hose to lifting weights, you should aim for both muscle-strengthening exercise and aerobic activity 20 minutes each day.

Elaine said: “Scientists have found that brain neurones – the special cells that perform all the necessary functions to keep you alive, as well as help you think and improve your memory – all increase after a few weeks of exercise.”

3. Keep your waist trim

The 97-year-old explained that the less fat you carry around, the more energy you have. “Every pound of excess weight puts a needless strain on the heart,” she added.

4. Don’t be bored. Or boring!

She also recommended always having something to do, someone to love and something to look forward to. “People don’t die of old age, they die of neglect and inactivity,” Elaine said.

5. Eat foods in their natural state

The fitness expert stressed the importance of eating fresh fruits and vegetables, while avoiding processed foods “as much as possible”.

6. Don’t diet

While fad diets come and go, the basis for physical fitness “remains constant”. “Eat right so you can’t go wrong,” Elaine said.


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