When you’re the leader of the free world, you’ve got a lot to keep up with: daily intelligence briefings, press conferences, and a seemingly infinite amount of miles on Air Force One, just to start. Which would mean—or, you’d think would mean—that the president of the United States would put his health at a premium. But the current POTUS, Donald Trump, is of the mindset that exercise—you know, my own personal physical and mental way of continuing to sanely and effectively exist—is “misguided,” and that each individual has a “finite amount of energy” akin to that of a battery, which exercise depletes. (Cue endless eye roll here.)
If there’s one topic I can wax poetic on the benefits of, it’s exercise. The benefits are staggering, both mental and physical; both statistical and anecdotal. Just 20 minutes of exercise a day has been proven to make you happier, and working out can help your body bounce back from both illness and and exhaustion. Plus, if you’ve ever seen the smile spread across my face as I leave a yoga class, you’d know that the Zen is real.
So this all got me thinking: If Donald Trump doesn’t have an accurate viewpoint of health, fitness, and exercise, have other previous leaders of the free world been fans of healthy living? I took a look into the history of presidential fitness facts—there’s all kinds of weird and wonderful stuff out there—to see how their habits stacked up and if every (or hey, any) POTUS is as in love with exercise as I am.
Read on for your fitness-focused history lesson.