Circa: 1950s: “As part of his own fitness program, Dr. Thomas K. Cureton, Jr., jogs near the University of Illinois. His workout takes him through a cemetery where some of his colleagues who once called him a ‘health nut’ now rest.”

Dr. Thomas K. Cureton, an internationally known scientist at the University of Illinois, established the Physical Fitness Research Laboratory in the Department of Physical Education for Men in 1944.  He was an internationally known scientist who played a crucial role in the development of the fitness movement in America.  Like the other physical culturists of the first half of the twentieth century, Cureton was called a “quack” and a “charlatan” by some physiologists and physicians who did not agree with his early findings, especially those relating to exercise and the heart. But, in Cureton’s relentless bulldog style, he produced study after study demonstrating that his statements were indeed correct.