The Fitness Habits Of Wildly Successful People

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When you consider the big brain benefits, it's no surprise that regular physical activity and life-altering success go hand in hand.

Because working out increases blood flow to the brain, regular exercise boosts alertness, endorphins, memory, learning... need we go on? It also seems to have protective effects against Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and stroke, as well as typical decline with age.

And those are perks that do not go unnoticed by politicians, leaders of the corporate world and other powerful people. These successful folks have harnessed the power of fitness to propel them to the top.

  • 1
    Barack Obama
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    The president breaks a sweat for 45 minutes, six days a week, alternating between strength and cardio, he told Men's Health in 2008 -- even if that means getting up at the crack of dawn to do so. Not to mention all those pickup basketball games!
  • 0
    Wendy Davis
    Getty Images
    The flashy running sneaks the state senator sported during her 11-hour filibuster should have been a clue: Wendy Davis is no stranger to fitness. She's "an avid runner and cyclist", according to the Christian Science Monitor. While she's reportedly more focused on cycling lately, she completed a five-kilometer charity race in Fort Worth in April, Runner's World reported.
  • -1
    Warren Buffett
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    The billionaire doesn't try to hide his less-than-nutritious food choices, but to make up for those indulgences, he's taken to exercise, CNBC reported. When his doctor gave him the choice between cleaning up his diet or working out, he told CNBC he picked exercise, the "lesser of two evils."
  • -2
    Oprah Winfrey
    Getty Images
    Forbes's most powerful celebrity of 2013 has been open about her weight gains and losses throughout the years, as well as what's worked -- and what hasn't. In a 2003 issue of O Magazine, Oprah's trainer, Bob Greene, detailed her sweat sessions, which include 45 minutes of cardio six mornings a week, four to five strength-training sessions a week, incline crunches and stretching.
  • -3
    Bill Clinton
    Getty Images
    The former president was well-known for his jogging habit, a regimen his Secret Service members weren't so happy about, since Clinton insisted on pounding the pavement outside of White House grounds. One agent who protected him, Dan Emmett, told U.S. News Clinton jogged three days a week for under 40 minutes. He's since giving up jogging, but told People he now tries to walk every day.
  • -4
    Madeleine Albright
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    The former Secretary of State can probably pump more iron than you. No joke. Speaking at a panel on health in Mexico City in 2010, she said, "One of the things that nobody ever believes about me that’s true is that I can leg press 450 pounds and I exercise three times a week," Reuters reported.
  • -5
    Ellen DeGeneres
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    The comedian and talk-show host told Shape magazine that she starts her mornings with 60 to 90 minutes of "power yoga", POPSUGAR Fitness reported.
  • -6
    Cory Booker
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    The New Jersey senate hopeful and current Newark mayor gave Men's Health a glimpse of his early-morning workout routine, which includes 45 minutes cycling and strength exercises like bench and chest presses.
  • -7
    Nancy Pelosi
    AP
    The congresswoman and former Speaker of the House takes a 45-minute power walk along the Potomac River every morning, according to the New Yorker.
  • -8
    Hillary Clinton
    Getty Images
    In a 2011 interview with Harper's Bazaar, Hillary Clinton revealed her personal trainer "comes and tortures me" at home three days a week at 6:00 a.m. Later that year, nearing the end of her tenure as Secretary of State, she said she was looking forward to catching up on a few essentials. "I just want to sleep and exercise and travel for fun," she told The New York Times, so maybe that torture's starting to feel good!

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