Jack LaLanne’s Death: 'Biggest Loser’s' Jillian Michaels Pays Tribute

Jack LaLanne - Portrait Session - 1986
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The trainer calls the original television fitness guru 'a trailblazer.'

The Biggest Loser trainer Jillian Michaels paid her respects to Jack LaLanne, the original television fitness guru who died on Sunday at age 96.

Michaels referred to LaLanne as "an inspirational trailblazer who brought a friendly face to fitness for millions" in a statement released Monday.

"I am saddened to hear about the passing of such a great man," she continued.

The Jack LaLanne Show was the forerunner of the modern fitness show and a distant parent to shows like The Biggest Loser. The Jack LaLanne Show made its debut in 1951 as a local program in the San Francisco area. It went nationwide on daytime television in 1959 making LaLanne an iconic figure for regular Americans trying to get in shape.

The show continued for more than three decades.

"His methods and example will be remembered and respected for years to come," said Michaels.