He breezed through the rigors of a marathon 21 months on the campaign trail. On polling day he mixed it up on a basketball court. And within hours of his election victory, Barack Obama was back in the gym for another grueling workout. Has an American president-elect ever been fitter for office?
Exercise, Obama says, is the key to remaining fresh and focused in the face of a punishing schedule. "The main reason I do it is just to clear my head and relieve me of stress," he told an American fitness magazine. "My blood pressure is pretty low and I tend to be a healthy eater."
While presidents before him were keen to display their physical fitness - Bill Clinton, for example, would take three-mile jogs through Washington's National Mall, accompanied by a posse of secret service agents on bicycles - few could match the dedication shown by the early-rising Obama, 47.
"Most of my workouts have to come before my day starts," he told Men's Health. "There's always a trade-off between sleep and working out. Usually I get in about 45 minutes, six days a week. I'll lift [weights] one day, do cardio the next. "I wish I was getting a 90-minute workout," he added. But even at his current pace, Obama will have spent at least another 2,700 minutes in the gym before inauguration day on January 20.
So the busiest man and father in North America has time to workout 6 days a week? Suddenly the rest of our excuses look pretty lame.