This is the first list of it’s kind in America and took our entire team over 3 months in order to finish this list:
Political leaders have an influence over their constituents and can be one of the building blocks towards attaining healthy lifestyle in mainstream America. They have access to the masses through the laws and their presence in media, which can motivate people into changing their nutrition for the better and being more physically active. We hope that politicians will continue to make wide-ranging changes towards a healthier U.S. Through having a healthier workforce, this great nation, as a whole, can see tangible benefits.
After completing research on the fittest governors, senators, and congresspeople in the U.S., Samir Becic and the Health Fitness Revolution team have put together a list of the Top 100 Fittest U.S. Politicians. Regardless of party affiliation, it is important that our leaders demonstrate healthy lifestyle and physical fitness. Healthy Body, Healthy Mind- we want our leaders to be healthy!
Given that there are thousands of politicians in America, this list was incredibly challenging to complete. We first researched all the available data on politicians online and narrowed it down to 1000, 500, 250, and finally 100. We used a combination of interviews, internet, library, industry literature, and Samir Becic’s knowledge of over 33 years in athletics coupled with his experience as 4 times Number 1 Fitness Trainer in the World.
The politicians on this list not only lead healthy lifestyles themselves, but also promote it within their leadership roles to their constituents. The following was taken into consideration: fitness level, nutritional habits, age, medical issues and how they coped with these, as well as involvement and promotion of a healthy lifestyle. We hope this list inspires more politicians to not only lead healthy lifestyles, but to promote health and fitness in their district and the nation.
The politicians are listed in no particular oder.
AARON SCHOCK- CONGRESSMAN ILLINOIS
known for covering Men’s Health magazine with a six pack, Schock really cares about fitness, which he says he got into in college when he felt his body was changing. He cares about others being fit too, which is why he launched “Fit for Summer, Fit for Life” in 2011 to motivate Americans to take control of their waistlines. He even touts one of his favorite quotes as being that of Ben Franklin “‘A good example is the best sermon,’” Schock said. “And I think if you want to start talking about healthy lifestyles and staying in shape, then you yourself should do your best to try to be a model, an example to people you’re trying to convince to do the same.” His personal fitness routine includes, calisthenics, jogging, swimming, p90x, and weightlifting- he works out 5 to 7 days a week because he acknowledges that working out makes him feel great, relieves stress, and gives him energy.
PAUL RYAN- CONGRESSMAN WISCONSIN
- Uses P90X
- Lead a class on physical fitness on Capital Hill
- Avoids fast-food and desserts
- Worked as a personal trainer
- Works out 6 days a week
- Made our list of the
ADRIEN FENTY- FORMER MAYOR OF WASHINGTON D.C.
In 2009, Men’s Fitness Magazine named Fenty one of their 25 Fittest Men- a list dominated by professional athletes and actors, none with as demanding a schedule as the Mayor of the nation’s capital. He told the magazine then that he was training as much as “humanely possible”, and that daily workouts had become nearly impossible. His fitness routine while Mayor was three times a week, he would go on a long early-morning run and he would also swim and cycle when he could. As an avid cycler himself, he made the nation’s capital more bike-friendly. In his first 20 months in office, Fenty’s administration spent $7 million for road and trail improvements, bike racks, signage, maps, and general education. But one of the mayor’s proudest accomplishments has been the SmartBike DC program. People who pay a $40 annual fee can now swipe a card at bike stations and ride one of 120 three-speed bicycles in the fleet.
JOE BIDEN, CURRENT VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Because he is currently the Vice President of the United States, it is important for Joe Biden to live a healthy lifestyle in order to cope with the heavy stress and demands of the position. Regarding his candidacy, he told CNN “there may be reasons I don’t run, but there’s no obvious reason for me why I think I should not run.” He makes sure to stay fit by using the Senate gym. In the gym, you can catch him biking, running, or just working on core exercises. We did however, find a tumblr page solely dedicated to him eating ice cream, with over 20 individual pictures!
ANDREW CUOMO- GOVERNOR OF NEW YORK
Andrew Cuomo loves boxing so much that he has a boxing equipped gym in his house with weights. He also jogs for around 2 to 3 hours a week. And Cuomo also likes to share his passion for physical fitness with the people who elected him. As the father of three girls who participate in soccer and track, he officially made Sept. 26 Women’s Health and Fitness Day in New York State!
ANTONIO VILLARAIGOSA- FORMER MAYOR OF LOS ANGELES
During his 12 years as mayor of the second largest city in the nation, Antonio Villaraigosa not only kept fit himself, but made strides in making his expanding police force fitter, and also added over 1500 miles of bike pathways for his constituents. He is known for loving his intense P90x workouts and being an avid biker. He has said that he wakes up daily at 5 a.m. to workout and is at his office by 7 p.m.
BARACK OBAMA- CURRENT PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES
Obama is very disciplined in his day to day life, and works out regularly. Not only does the President work out daily, but his wife, Michelle Obama and their two daughters are equally conscious for their health. Very particular about his health, the man eats healthy food and makes sure his family is very healthy as well. Obama practices alternate resistance training, plays basketball regularly, and devotes four days a week to weight training. Obama has been vocal about his opinion that workouts are the best way to bring harmony between your body and mind.
BILL CLINTON- FORMER U.S. PRESIDENT
When President Clinton faced serious health problems in 2004, he did thorough research which let him to the vegan diet in 2010. In addition to this, he was known to be an avid runner that used this form of cardio exercise to dissipate the stress of the White House. He is a proponent of healthy lifestyle and Veganism which he credits to saving his life and dropping more than 20 pounds. Bill Clinton is also known to take long walks with his dog.
BILL NELSON – SENATOR FLORIDA
“EDUCATION IS THE TOTALITY OF ONESELF, MIND AS WELL AS BODY… STAYING PHYSICALLY FIT IS IMPORTANT IN SCHOOL BECAUSE YOU’RE MAKING STRONG LITTLE BODIES AS WELL AS STRONG LITTLE MINDS”
- His diet is low-carb and low-fat.
- He doesn’t drink alcohol, doesn’t smoke, and exercises religiously.
- Senator Nelson has done the astronaut physical in Houston roughly every other year since he flew aboard the space shuttle in 1986 and he’s always passed with flying colors.
- His office told Health Fitness Revolution that Bill believes one key to good health is staying active, whether it’s jogging almost every day, hunting quail in North Florida or searching for pythons in the Everglades.
- He is a strong advocate of physical fitness in schools.
- He jogs 2 miles every morning.
- Served six years in the U.S. Army and Army Reserve, which means he was active throughout his youth.
- Nelson has started an initiative to boost physical education in schools. He has voiced his concern that schools are dropping physical education programs at a time when health risks such as including hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes and obesity are affecting more and more children. Nelson visited the Duval County school to announce his initiative to boost physical education programs in schools.
CHRIS CHRISTIE- GOVERNOR OF NEW JERSEY
In 2013, Chris Christie announced that he needed to lose weight and get healthy for his family- and decided to get a lap-band procedure done. Health Fitness Revolution does not recommend anyone to get lap-band but we are reporting Governor’s Christie’s story. Since then, he has lost close to 100 pounds and says that fitness has become a part of his daily life. We put Governor Christie on this list because we feel he is a good example to those American’s that struggle with their weight- that no matter how daunting a lifestyle change might seem- it can be done! He trains three times a week with his fitness trainer- who he often thanks in his public speeches and press releases.
CORY BOOKER- SENATOR NEW JERSEY
“IT’S WHAT YOU EAT, IT’S HOW YOU EXERCISE, IT’S HOW YOU SLEEP”
- Eats a Vegetarian Diet
- Exercise Routine:
- Lifts weights
- Former college football player at Stanford.
- Lost 42 lbs and still trying to lose more.
- His “Breakfast after the Bell” program – feeds students so they are ready for the day.
- He educates students about healthy living and eating.
EARL RAY TOMBLIN- GOVERNOR OF WEST VIRGINIA
Earl Ray Tomblin has partnered with fitness legend Jake Steinfeld (“Body by Jake”) on The National Foundation for Governors’ Fitness Councils in order to build a nation of the fittest, healthiest kids in the world. His own site states that physical activity and exercise are shown to help prevent and treat more than 40 chronic diseases, enhance individual health and quality of life and reduce health care costs. In schools, studies show that physical activity improves academic achievement, increases confidence and self-esteem, reduces discipline problems, cuts absenteeism and fosters better interpersonal relationships. Tomblin himself has said “I’ve always said that academics and fitness go hand in and hand and believe that if you provide the schools with the tools, students will excel beyond their wildest dreams. Not only will these students be healthier, but they’ll also have increased confidence, improved self-esteem and will achieve greater academic success.”
GAVIN NEWSOM- CURRENT LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR OF CALIFORNIA AND FORMER MAYOR OF SAN FRANCISCO
As a politician, Gavin has been pitching major health and fitness initiatives for years. When Newsom was mayor of San Francisco from 2004 to 2011, he signed laws that required city restaurants to put nutrition information on their menus, and proposed policy changes to bring healthy and sustainably produced meals from bountiful Northern California farms into the city. Even more impressive, he initiated the “Shape Up San Francisco” program, a five-year plan that aims to increase access to healthy food and make it easier for people to exercise. Today, San Francisco ranks among the fittest cities in the US.
GEORGE W. BUSH- FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES
George W. Bush has a military background and was in the Texas Air National Guard. He is a passionate runner and was known to run 6 times a week during his presidency. He had a treadmill on the Air Force One, and was known to run for extended periods of time during international flights. He uses the elliptical, weights, and stretching as part of his regime. He was quoted saying “Exercise is so important that corporate America should help its employees make time. There should be flextime for families, and there should be flextime for exercise. A healthy workforce is a more productive work force. We have got to do a better job of encouraging exercise in America.” He once ran the Houston marathon in a good time of 3:44, running the first mile in 8:30 and the last mile in 8:30.
JAY INSLEE- GOVERNOR OF WASHINGTON
Jay Inslee is a known avid basketball player and has even played against Barack Obama at the White House. To stay active, he says he also enjoys biking, skiing and hiking. Inslee also participates in the annual congressional baseball game and is a charter member of the Hoopaholics camp, a basketball charity that raises money for abused and neglected children. Athletics for Inslee, it seems, serve as a cure for a slow litigation process in Washington D.C. Inslee recognizes that we need to look more broadly at the overall structure of wellness and prevention – healthy habits, healthy diet and a commitment to fitness. He states that these are the true elements of building a healthier state workforce- so he signed a bill that requires healthful food and beverages in vending machines, cafeterias and on-site retail shops, at meetings and events, and in institutions where food is served to prisoners or other people in state custody.
JEFF FLAKE – SENATOR ARIZONA
“I ENJOY SPORTS ALL THE TIME. BASEBALL. I LIKE PICKUP BASKETBALL. I JOG, BIKE, YOU NAME IT.”
- Took his sons to an isolated, uninhabited tropical island for a “four day survival holiday” (previously completed a survival week alone).
- A devoted follower of P90X workouts.
- Enjoys swimming and being outdoors.
JEFF MERKLEY – SENATOR OREGON
HAS SAID HIS WORKOUTS HAVE BEEN “VERY HELPFUL IN MANAGING THE STRESS OF THE JOB…WHEN THINGS GO AWRY AND YOU’RE TRYING TO MAKE A PROJECT HAPPEN…I SAY TO MYSELF, ‘YOU KNOW, I’M GOING TO HOLD OFF ON WORRYING ABOUT THAT UNTIL I’VE WORKED OUT TOMORROW.’”
- He finished an Iron Distance Triathlon 2012 (140 miles of biking, swimming, and running)
- Dropped about 30 pounds from 2010-2012.
- His daughter encouraged him to get back into being active because she runs and does cross country.
JERRY BROWN- GOVERNOR OF CALIFORNIA
Jill Stein is a physician and teacher of internal medicine, and has been a long-time advocate of making the planet healthy as well as the people. She created the “Healthy People, Healthy Planet” program which reveals the links between the human health, climate security, and green economic revitalization. She has won multiple awards for her efforts to protect public health. In terms of her diet, she eats mostly organic, because it is both healthy for her body and more environmentally sustainable.
KARL DEAN- MAYOR OF NASHVILLE
Mayor Karl Dean is waging a steady battle against an unhealthy crisis and trying to make Nashville, known for it’s fatty southern cooking and high obesity rate, a healthier place. His strategy, he says, is simple- to expand opportunities for exercise and good nutrition and to lead by example. With a $7.5 million stimulus grant, Dean is transforming Nashville into an exercise-friendly city, creating bike paths and parks where they’ve never existed. He worries about the children, who consistently fall in the bottom 5 on nationwide obesity rankings; he knows that childhood obesity is linked to diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer. Because of this, Dean launched a city-wide campaign “Walk 100 Miles with the Mayor” to encourage all Nashvillians to improve their overall health by joining their friends and neighbors in walking for exercise. More than 4,300 Nashvillians have participated to date and all together, have walked over 120,000 miles. He even launched a useful APP for the residents of Nashville called “NashVitality” which is a mobile guide to a healthy, active and green lifestyle in Nashville. Inside this app there are interactive maps for all types of activities including walking, hiking, biking, water access, and much more.
KIRSTEN GILLIBRAND – SENATOR NEW YORK
“THE GOVERNMENT CAN TAKE SMART STEPS TO GIVE ALL KIDS THE HEALTHY START THEY NEED TO REACH THEIR FULL POTENTIAL.”
- She is fighting for the Healthy Food Financing Initiative to bring more grocery stores, farmers markets, food cooperatives and other options within reach.
- She wants to connect fresh produce with new markets
- She is aiming at fighting poverty and poor nutrition by increasing SNAP (food stamp) benefits
- On her agenda is also committing to reducing childhood obesity by unveiling her plan to ban trans fats in school and provide healthier school lunches, eliminate junk food and snacks from schools, increase exercise opportunities for children, and improve preventive care to combat childhood obesity.
- Lost about 40 pounds 2010 because of diet: only water, fruits, veggies, grilled chicken, and no dessert.
- She runs and plays squash on the weekends
- Practices and plays softball with other congresswomen.
LISA MURKOWSKI – SENATOR ALASKA
“WE ALL KNOW THE PROBLEM, AND WE ALL KNOW THAT EATING THE RIGHT AMOUNT OF HEALTHY FOODS AND GETTING ENOUGH EXERCISE ARE THE ANSWERS TO PREVENTING OVERWEIGHT, OBESITY AND ALL THE RELATED SERIOUS HEALTH PROBLEMS AND COSTS.”
- Wrote an article on genetically modified salmon published in Women’s Health, mentioning her conscientiousness of healthy, lean protein.
- She regularly posts photos of cooking and freshly picked vegetables on her Facebook page.
- Enjoys hiking, skiing, and being active with her family.
- Told Health Fitness Revolution that she walks to and from work every chance she gets and uses the elevator as little as possible to get to her office, which is on the 7th floor.
MARCO RUBIO, SENATOR FLORIDA
Marco Rubio has said he is ready to become president, but how does he keep down the stress and a healthy lifestyle while on the road? During high school and college, he stayed fit by playing football and even got a scholarship for it, but that was ended because of an injury after his freshman year of college. Now he exercises early in the mornings before his four kids wake up, and attends daily Catholic mass to continue his spiritual health. He also works out at the members-only Senate gym with his gym partner, fellow senator Richard J. Durbin.
MARK UDALL – SENATOR COLORADO
“COLORADANS KNOW OUR MOUNTAINS, PARKS AND OPEN SPACES ARE ESSENTIAL TO OUR SPECIAL WAY OF LIFE. BUT AS STUDY AFTER STUDY SHOWS CHILDHOOD OBESITY RATES ARE INCREASING, WE MUST DO MORE TO CONNECT OUR KIDS WITH OPPORTUNITIES FOR OUTDOOR ADVENTURE. THE HEALTHY KIDS OUTDOORS ACT SUPPORTS LOCAL INITIATIVES ACROSS THE UNITED STATES TO ENSURE OUR KIDS EVERYWHERE HAVE ACCESS TO OUTDOOR RECREATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES AND THEY CAN REAP THE NUMEROUS BENEFITS OF AN ACTIVE LIFESTYLE.”
- Enjoys outdoor activities:
- Is an avid Mountaineer.
- He has climbed Mount everest.
- Supports government Acts to promote fitness in children and reducing the childhood obesity rate.
MARTIN O’MALLEY, GOVERNOR OF MARYLAND
Martin O’Malley is not only of the fittest U.S. politicians who is concerned with the overall health in his state but a main point on his agenda is also concern about the health and physical activity level of people with disabilities. He passed the Fitness and Athletic Equity Act in Maryland which promotes expanded athletic opportunities for people with disabilities. While being concerned with others health, O’Malley stays in shape by doing P90X and participates in the annual Special Olympics Polar Bear Dip.
MAYOR MIKE BLOOMBERG- FORMER NEW YORK CITY MAYOR
Mike Bloomberg was known for taking extreme stances when it came to making New York City residents healthier and fitter. Bloomberg —a bit of a health and fitness nut himself— targeted unhealthy lifestyles during his 12 year run unlike any other administration before him. He left behind a legacy of aggressive measures designed to improve the health of the city’s residents: his administration built bike lanes, plastered anti–soda ads on subways, funded produce sellers, banned cigarette smoking in the workplace and made them more expensive, he reformed school meals after being horrified by what children were being fed at school, and he required restaurants to list calorie counts. From 2002 to 2009 adult smoking decreased by 27 percent in the city, and the life span of the average New Yorker rose by 3 years (higher than the 1.7 year national average). His most recent fitness plan was to make elevators slower in order to encourage people to take the stairs- to well maintained rooftop urban gardens that can be used to grow “healthy foods”.
MIKE CALDWELL- MAYOR OF OGDEN, UTAH
Mike Caldwell has been racing bikes competitively for the past 28 years and got into competing in triathlons about a decade ago. Before he became mayor of Ogden in 2012, Caldwell exercised at lunch. Now, with the demands of the job and family, he has to get up very early to get a workout in. He’s given his scheduler strict orders never to book him between 4:30 and 5:30 a.m., when he goes to a Crossfit Gym. He was quoted in NPR saying “That is probably one of the most important things I do with my day,” Caldwell says. “If I don’t get exercise, I’m not as quick on my feet. The stresses of the day just seem to compound themselves. I’m less patient with my kids and my family. This job would be far too difficult if you didn’t have some outlets and ways to keep your feet on the ground.” As for what he’s done for the community, he’s tried making Ogden more bicycle accessible so it’s residents can stay active- it took four tries, but Ogden was determined to get that Bicycle Friendly Community (BFC) recognition. It finally did. In October 2013, it became the only community in Utah to win BFC honors from the League of American Bicyclists in the fall’s round of awards.
MITT ROMNEY- FORMER GOVERNOR OF MASSACHUSETTS
An avid jogger, Romney has said he runs at least 3 miles a day and reportedly hits the elliptical machine for 30 to 40 minutes at hotel gyms while on the road. While campaigning for the 2012 presidential election, he said he used fellow lister Paul Ryan as both his running mate and personal trainer. He loves peanut butter and honey sandwiches (getting protein and antioxidants without resorting to higher cholesterol lunch options), and counts skiing among his hobbies—after all, he was President and CEO of the 2002 Olympic Games in Salt Lake City.
NANCY CHANEY- MAYOR OF MOSCOW, IDAHO
Mayor Nancy Chaney of Moscow, ID, is working to help residents be healthier and she uses smart growth strategies as a way to achieve both health and regional connections. Chaney says: “Smart growth means connecting people in the physical and social sense. It includes gathering places and public centers like Friendship Square in the heart of our downtown. And smart growth means providing for all residents regardless of their preferred mode of transportation—bicycles, strollers, wheelchairs. Smart growth gives Moscow’s residents this flexibility to choose whether to be in a motorized vehicle or to walk to a doctor’s appointment. Smart growth is about how people and place are interrelated.” Mayor Chaney has also been part of Moscow’s Active Living Task Force, a federal grant-funded program to support active living policies and implementation. Her work at improving fitness and health within the community has even garnered national recognition from First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign.
NATHAN DEAL- GOVERNOR OF GEORGIA
In 2012, when Governor Deal learned that children aged between 10-17 in Georgia had the second highest obesity rate (40%), he decided to do something about it. That year, partnered with the Georgia Department of Public Health and launched Georgia SHAPE, a statewide program merging governmental, philanthropic and academic and business communities to address childhood obesity. Nathan Deal has said “We must work together to improve the health of children in our state. Some suggest that we’re raising the first generation of American kids to have shorter life expectancy then their parents because of problems related to obesity. We can and will do better to promote healthy lifestyles.” We appreciate that Governor Deal acknowledges that childhood obesity has serious immediate and long-term effects not only on health and well-being, but also on the academic achievement of children and the economy of his state.
PAT QUINN- GOVERNOR OF ILLINOIS
In 2001, Governor Pat Quinn walked from the Mississippi River to Lake Michigan to call for decent health care for all. In 2012, he announced the “Walk Across Illinois Challenge,” an initiative to help improve the health and wellness of Illinois residents. Today, the Walk Across Illinois Challenge covers 190 miles and encourages everyone from youth to senior citizens to walk. That same year, Governor Quinn announced in the creation of the Governor’s Council on Health and Physical Fitness to develop practical ideas to help residents embrace healthier lifestyles. This council is charged with promoting a statewide response to prevent chronic disease brought on by poor nutrition and a lack of physical fitness. Pat Quinn aims to promote lifelong physical activity and healthy eating practices because he has said “The best preventative medicine is a healthy lifestyle.” Healthy lifestyle has been shown to contribute to healthy weight, prevent or improve most chronic diseases and increase longevity.
PHIL BRYANT- GOVERNOR OF MISSISSIPPI
In his state of address after his inauguration in 2012, Governor Bryant said this on the need for fitness in Mississippi: “As citizens, we must do a better job with our individual healthcare. Every Mississippian should realize that a sound diet and exercise program will save lives and reduce health care costs. We should not be the most obese state in the nation, leading the worst statistics of heart attacks and strokes. Walk, run, go to the gym, plant a garden or ride a bike. Getting active is key to your own health care and I again intend to lead by example.” He also invited the people of Mississippi to join him at his “5K Governor’s Run for Health” which he aims to host every summer during his tenure. Bryant believes each of us has to take responsibility for our personal health, and that a family run is a great way for people to get active and improve their wellbeing.
RAHM EMANUEL- MAYOR OF CHICAGO
Rahm Emanuel is a seriously fit guy- in a 2011 interview will Wolf Blitzer, he enumerated his 7-day workout routine as follows: Three mornings a week, Rahm wakes up early, runs to the gym, and swims a mile in a 50-meter indoor pool. Then he does chest exercises and runs two miles back to his Ravenswood Manor home. The other two mornings, he rides 25 miles on a stationary bike, followed by a 15-minute turn on the elliptical, weights, 100 sit-ups, and 50 pushups. On Saturdays,
he bikes 20 miles outdoors. What day of rest? He practices yoga on Sunday. Mayor Emanuel is working on childhood obesity too- he is working in partnership with agencies, foundations, corporations, and other key stakeholders, to give all children in Chicago the childhood they deserve by having access to parks and playgrounds.
RALPH BECKER- MAYOR OF SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH
Salt Lake City, Utah was voted Men’s Fitness “Fittest City in America” in 2006 due to the metropolitan region’s abundance of park space, athletically motivated residents and below-average obesity rates. In 2006, it ranked highest participation in a number of activities, including beach volleyball, racquetball, aerobics, hiking, basketball, yoga, tai chi, swimming, cycling, running, and kickboxing. Salt Lake residents also watch 23% less television than average cities in the survey and eat better due to a higher ratio of health-food stores per resident than most other cities. Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker is a cycling enthusiast and a proponent of bike lane additions and improvements in Salt Lake City. He works out every morning before biking or walking the one-mile route to his office. On weekends, he hikes or skis Utah’s backcountry.
RAND PAUL – SENATOR KENTUCKY
IN 1995, PAUL FOUNDED THE SOUTHERN KENTUCKY LIONS EYE CLINIC, WHICH PROVIDES FREE EYE CARE FOR LOW-INCOME PEOPLE, “BECAUSE I WANTED TO BE ABLE TO GIVE BACK TO THE COMMUNITY.”
- Paul swam and played football in high school.
- Still plays baseball in the annual Congressional Baseball game.
- Currently volunteers in little league baseball, soccer, and basketball for each of his three sons.
- Founded the Southern Kentucky Lions Eye Clinic to provide free eye exams and surgeries to families in need and keep their eyes healthy.
- Paul is also on our Fitness Reportcard for 2016 Presidential Hopefuls and got an A-.
RICK PERRY- GOVERNOR OF TEXAS
Perry often touts the importance of fitness and notes the cost to states and companies of obesity-related ailments. He is also an avid promoter of fitness by example, he has ran in countless fun runs and marathons across the state of Texas during his tenure as Governor. He also runs almost daily around his home in Austin, and complained that when he had back surgery in 2011 and was unable to exercise regularly- he developed sleep apnea, which had been under control with his healthy lifestyle previously.
RICK SCOTT- GOVERNOR OF FLORIDA
In 2011, Governor Scott launched a Wellness Challenge in his state that recognizes schools making a positive difference in the lives of Florida’s students by promoting fitness, wellness and a healthier lifestyle. He said “I believe that healthy bodies are linked to healthy minds. Physical activity and education, along with balanced nutrition, are the tools that give school children the strength and focus they need to succeed in the classroom.” He continues ““Fitness and nutrition are strongly linked to healthy minds. As we work to provide our students a good education, it is important to also teach them how to fuel their bodies and minds through balanced diets and physical activity. These tools will allow Florida’s children to succeed not only in the classroom, but also throughout their lives.”
ROBERT “BOB” CASEY JR. – SENATOR PENNSYLVANIA
“THE HEALTHY HUNGER-FREE KIDS ACT WILL PUT US ON A PATH TO END CHILDHOOD HUNGER AND OBESITY AND IMPROVE THE HEALTH OF THE NEXT GENERATION OF AMERICANS. IF WE MISS THE OPPORTUNITY TO PASS THIS BILL AND IMPROVE THESE PROGRAMS, IT WILL BE OUR CHILDREN WHO PAY THE PRICE FOR OUR INACTION.”
- Serves on the Senate committee for health
- Plays in the annual softball game
- Enjoys jogging
- Plays basketball
- Coaches basketball also
RT RYBAK- FORMER MAYOR OF MINNEAPOLIS
In 2013, for the third year in a row, the Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area was the fittest in America, according to the American College of Sports Medicine’s annual rankings. The Mayor at the time, Rybak, a fitness enthusiast himself, was very proud of his city, which is known for being covered in snow 3 months out of the year- he boasted that it’s residents get off their couches no matter the season. Minneapolis also has more playgrounds, swimming pools, tennis courts, golf courses, baseball diamonds and dog parks, per capita, than other cities. Rybak himself was voted Men’s Fitness “Fittest Mayor in America” in 2006 due to his an exercise routine of running, biking, swimming, and weightlifting 5 times a week. Rybak suffered a heart attack while cross-country skiing in January of this year, due to a family history of heart issues, and not lack of exercise. He has made a fast recovery and continues to be physically active.
SARAH PALIN (FORMER GOVERNOR OF ALASKA)
Former Gov. Sarah Palin has always been a runner and still runs 5 to 7 miles a day. Now a mother of five kids, she says exercise is still very much a “family thing.” She and her husband, Todd, also an athlete, named their first son Track because he was born in that sport’s season. And because she still lives in Alaska, she enjoys outdoor sports regularly, such as hunting, finish, and hiking. Over her diet she says “My family and I eat a healthy diet heavy in wild Alaskan seafood, moose, caribou and fresh fruit.” In 2012 she announced she would be writing a fitness book.
SCOTT WALKER, GOVERNOR OF WISCONSIN
This Wisconsin Governor is one of the fittest U.S. politicians and has always had healthy living on the top of his to do list. He even appeared on Sesame Street to inspire kids to eat healthy and be active- a very noble act considering the childhood obesity rate is increasing at an alarming rate. In 2013, he showed how eating healthy is important when he published his book The Eating Clean Simple Diet (Foods That Help You Lose Weight). Governor Walker shows his concern for healthy lifestyle in politics by signing legislation that promotes workplace wellness. He is also part of the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Health to help improve fitness, health, and nutrition programs with fitness legend Jake Steinfeld.
TIM KAINE – SENATOR VIRGINIA
“I BELIEVE HEALTHY SHOULD BE JUDGED ON WHAT YOU CAN DO, LIKE RUN A MILE WITHOUT STOPPING, RATHER THAN THINGS YOU SHOULDN’T DO. WE’RE [MY FAMILY AND I] ALL SO ACTIVE THAT IT BALANCES OUT.”
- Admits he went through a period of exercise binges.
- Runs 5k,8k,10k, races each year:
- runs with family
- prepares by using elliptical machine
- runs up to 6 miles outside
- Works out for 45-60 minutes 5 days a week, often with Marco Rubio (who is on our fitness reportcard of 2016 Presidential Hopefuls here):
- 30 minute elliptical workout
- 15 minutes of upper body and core exercises on universal weight machine
- Almost always participates in one long bike ride per year.
- Enjoys camping, hiking, canoeing, and biking.
MATT SALMON – CONGRESSMAN ARIZONA
- Enjoys mountain biking on challenging trails
- Runs an organization that provides child care management and counseling
KYRSTEN SINEMA – CONGRESSWOMAN ARIZONA
- Competed in the Ironman Competition
- Runs 30 miles per week
- Bikes 2 days per week
- Swims 2 days per week
- Trains about 20 hours per week
- Plans to run in the Boston Marathon
- Participated in the Phoenix Rock N’Roll
NANCY PELOSI – CONGRESSWOMAN CALIFORNIA
- Starts her day off with a 45 minute power walk
ERIC SWALWELL – CONGRESSMAN CALIFORNIA
- College soccer player
- Enjoys going to the gym
KEVIN MCCARTHY – CONGRESSMAN CALIFORNIA
- Described by CNN as a workout buff
- Enjoys biking along Rock Creek Park’s trails in Washington
- Does P90X
- Started joining Paul Ryan for his morning workout
ADAM SCHIFF – CONGRESSMAN CALIFORNIA
- Biked in the AIDS Life Cycle race: 545 miles
- Has completed endurance races staged in the District, Philadelphia, New York City, and Malibu
LUCILLE ROYBAL-ALLARD – CONGRESSWOMAN CALIFORNIA
- Awarded the Heart of the Family award from the Weingart East LA YMCA
- Realizes the importance of exercise and nutrition programs to help fight diseases and obesity
- Stops in at the East LA’s Eastmont Community Center for aerobics with her constituents to encourage staying active
LORETTA SANCHEZ – CONGRESSWOMAN CALIFORNIA
- Known for her strenuous workout regimens
- Hikes with her constituents
DANA ROHRABACHER – CONGRESSMAN CALIFORNIA
- Enjoys surfing
JANICE HAHN-CONGRESSWOMAN CALIFORNIA
- Has done the polar bear swim for the past 11 years
- Did the Compton Walk for Breast Cancer
- Did Zumba at the Senior’s Luncheon
- Participated in the Congressional Women’s Softball game
SCOTT TIPTON – CONGRESSMAN COLORADO
- Either goes for a morning run or does a high intensity workout on the elliptical
JIM HIMES – CONGRESSMAN CONNECTICUT
- Was captain of the lightweight crew team at Harvard
- Walked 31 miles from Wall Street to his come in Connecticut (9 hours) during the 2003 blackout in New York
- Avid rower
- Promoted physical fitness at the Greenwich Boy’s Club
- Named one of the fittest politicians by Men’s Health
JOHN CARNEY – CONGRESSMAN DELAWARE
- Took part in Be Healthy Delaware Day
- Part of the “Get Up and Do Something” Healthy People 2020 Campaign
- He says, “Just a bit can keep you fit. That’s our new slogan, and it’s meant to let young adults know that walking 30 minutes a day, three days a week, is every bit as healthy as engaging in exercises that give the body a real beating.”
VERN BUCHANAN – CONGRESSMAN FLORIDA
- Lost 25 pounds
- Cycles for one hour and burns about 1200 calories
- Swims at home
- Frequently goes west to hike
- Light training and flexibility routines
- Eats mainly a vegetarian diet, but enjoys fish or steak occasionally
- He says, “You can try to lose weight, but it won’t work, no matter how much you exercise if you’ve got a bad diet. Part of my program is I eat a lot more vegetables and fruits, not a hundred percent, but as much as I can. I think it’s the combination that’s really made the difference for me.”
DEBBIE WASSERMAN SCHULTZ – CONGRESSWOMAN FLORIDA
- Played in the congressional softball game
- Enjoys hiking and swimming
- Eats a well balanced diet
TOM GRAVES – CONGRESSMAN GEORGIA
- Star athlete in high school
- Bikes or runs through the Georgia mountains everyday
- Training for another triathlon
TULSI GABBARD – CONGRESSWOMAN HAWAII
- Works out with Aaron Schock, Paul Ryan, and Scott Peters
- Follows P90X
- Does a Brazilian martial art called capoeira
- Took the Army Physical Fitness Test with a score of 287
DANIEL LIPINSKI – CONGRESSMAN ILLINOIS
- Avid runner
- Participates in numerous races each year with his wife (2 miles to half marathons)
- Cares for his Type 1 Diabetes
TAMMY DUCKWORTH – CONGRESSWOMAN ILLINOIS
- Iraq war veteran
- Lieutenant colonel in the Illinois Army National Guard
- Former US Army helicopter pilot
- Enjoys scuba diving, surfing, skydiving and flies as a civilian pilot
- Completed several marathons
RODNEY DAVIS – CONGRESSMAN ILLINOIS
- Coaches son’s little league team
- Co-chairs a multimillion dollar YMCA
- Ran in the ACLI Capital Challenge 5K
ADAM KINZINGER – CONGRESSMAN ILLINOIS
- In the Top 25 fittest politicians according to Men’s Health
- Enjoys running and weightlifting
- Air Force Pilot – 3 tours
CHERI BUSTOS – CONGRESSWOMAN ILLINOIS
- Starts her day at 5 am at the gym
- Member of the Illinois College Sports Hall of Fame
- Relaxes at the gym when not working
- High school and college athlete playing basketball and volleyball
- She says, “I still work out. That’s my release.”
ANDRÉ CARSON – CONGRESSMAN INDIANA
- Strong supporter of Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move campaign
- Strong supporter of Farmers Market Promotion Programs and other programs that promote local gardens
- Former Homeland Security agent
TODD YOUNG- CONGRESSMAN INDIANA
- Enlisted in the US Navy
- Participated in Varsity athletics in the US Naval Academy in Annapolis
JOSEPH P. KENNEDY III – CONGRESSMAN MASSACHUSETTS
- Member of the Peace Corps
- Played lacrosse at Stanford
STEPHEN F. LYNCH – CONGRESSMAN MASSACHUSETTS
- Ran in the 118th Boston Marathon (2014)
ERIK PAULSEN – CONGRESSMAN MINNESOTA
- Climbed Mt. Washburn with family
JON RUNYAN – CONGRESSMAN NEW JERSEY
- Was 338 pounds to 285 pounds.
- Embarked on a 40-day “crazy diet” eating lean protein with veggies such as spinach and lettuce as part of a 500-calories-a-day regimen.
- “As of 2012, is running about every other day as well as doing some interval training. Between football injuries and his hectic congressional schedule, Runyan, 30, admits staying slimmer is a daily struggle.”
- Former NFL Player
- In high school, was All-State (Michigan) selection in basketball and two-time state champion shot putter.
- “I never verbally make resolutions, but subconsciously I tell myself I’ve got to lose 20 pounds. I haven’t missed a day of working out since the New Year, so that’s a start. There is a congressional gym, but truthful, all you need is a flat piece of land and a pair of sneakers, and you can get in a workout anywhere. You just have to be creative enough and understand exercise enough. I took a three-and-a-half-mile walk this morning, and I’m paying for it right now because my foot’s on fire. I’ll do yoga, work on flexibility, mix it up. I do cardiovascular fitness as much as I can, which is hard with two bad wheels, a knee and a foot. But you can work around things like that if you think about it.”
TOM REED- CONGRESSMAN NEW YORK
- In 2013, underwent gastric bypass surgery to lose 70 pounds and is now diabetes free.
- “It’s not about the numbers, but just being healthy”
- Plays basketball with son.
- Drinks plenty of water and take vitamins.
- Eats small portions.
HAKEEM JEFFRIES-CONGRESSMAN NEW YORK
- Plays in the congressional Baseball League
- Hosts a Health and Wellness expo
MIKE MCINTYRE-CONGRESSMAN NORTH CAROLINA
- Participated in the Capital Soccer classic to benefit youth sports.
- Charter honorary member of the National Youth Sports Health & Safety Institute.
- Won many awards for volunteering and working children’s health.
JIM JORDAN-CONGRESSMAN OHIO
- Former wrestler at University of Wisconsin.
- Active role in high school wrestling in Ohio.
- On the fitness caucasus.
TIM RYAN-CONGRESSMAN OHIO
- Uses mindfulness techniques for stress reduction and encourages them to others; wrote a book on it called “A Mindful Nation”
- “If we can shave a fraction of the health care costs of chronic stress, we’re talking about real savings,” He said. ” Heart disease. Type 2 diabetes. Politically, this cutes across the aisle. You hear one side talk about being compassionate towards kids and investing in education. We also hear about saving money and deficits and individual responsibility.”
- “Well, What more can you give to a human being than to teach them how to be responsible for their own health by reducing their stress level, increasing their focus and boosting their immune system?”
MARKWAYNE MULLIN-CONGRESSMAN OKLAHOMA
- Enjoys hunting
TOM MARINO-CONGRESSMAN PENNSYLVANIA
- Spends a few days a week running and a few lifting weights.
- Spends an hour at the congress-only gym every morning.
- Is always on the go and keeps moving.
KEITH ROTHFUS-CONGRESSMAN PENNSYLVANIA
- Avid marathon runner
- Cancer Survivor; had abdominal surgery
- Ran the Pittsburgh Marathon in 2011-injured, but still finished.
CHARLES “CHARLIE” DENT- CONGRESSMAN PENNSYLVANIA
- Play tennis, competed in the cystic fibrosis charity tennis competition in 2011.
- Held a Run with Charlie 5K Run/Walk.
- Participated in Ashly’s 5K Race for Freedom
DAVID CICILLINE- CONGRESSMAN RHODE ISLAND
- Enjoys boxing, does it about twice a week.
- Participated in Eliot Kamentiz Father’s Day Ride
KRISTI NOEM- CONGRESSWOMAN SOUTH DAKOTA
- Experience rancher and farmer
- Avid hunter (pheasant hunting and archery elk are her favorites)
- Helps kids compete in rodeo and 4-H
- Participates in the Congress women’s Softball game
- Runs with the family in 5Ks
MARC VEASEY- CONGRESSMAN TEXAS
- Posted on Facebok: “The greatest wealth is health”
- Works at UPS
- Meets with the Fort Worth Health Fair
- Many posts about health on Facebook.
DAVID REICHERT- CONGRESSMAN WASHINGTON
- Served in the Air Force
- Was a sheriff for King County
- Uses P90X
- Gets up at 5 AM to workout
- “It’s mind over mattress.”
RON KIND- CONGRESSMAN WISCONSIN
- Fitness Integrated with Teaching (FIT) Kids Act
- Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans Act
- Personal Health Investment Today (PHIT) Act
- Apart of the Fitness Caucus
SEAN DUFFY- CONGRESSMAN WISCONSIN
- was nationally recognized professional lumberjack athlete
- Teaches his 6 kids how to log-roll
BETO O’ROURKE- CONGRESSMAN TEXAS
- Age 42
BILL JOHNSON- CONGRESSMAN OHIO
- Age 60
BRAD WENSTRUP- CONGRESSMAN OHIO
- Age 56
CHRIS COLLINS- CONGRESSMAN NEW YORK
DOC HASTINGS- CONGRESSMAN WASHINGTON
- Age 73
DUNCAN HUNTER- CONGRESSMAN CALIFORNIA
- Age 37
FRANK LOBIONDO- CONGRESSMAN NEW JERSEY
- Age 68
GREG WALDEN- CONGRESSMAN OREGON
- Age 57
LOU BARLETTA- CONGRESSMAN PENNSYLVANIA
- Age 58
LUKE MESSER- CONGRESSMAN INDIANA
- Age 45
PAT MEEHAN- CONGRESSMAN PENNSYLVANIA
- Age 59
PETER WELCH- CONGRESSMAN VERMONT
- Age 67
SCOTT PERRY- CONGRESSMAN PENNSYLVANIA
- Age 52
TIM GRIFFIN- CONGRESSMAN ARKANSAS
- Age 46
TOM COTTON- CONGRESSMAN ARKANSAS
- Age 37