What 11 Highly Successful People Do To Stay In Shape

The most successful people know they need to
mentally and physicallypush themselves.

That’s why many of them turn to intense exercise routines that push their boundaries, make them physically stronger, and improve their mental processing.

“Exercise is the single best thing you can do for your brain in terms of mood, memory, and learning,” John Ratey, a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School, said in an interview with U.S. News & World Report. “Even 10 minutes of activity changes your brain.”

President Barack Obama has admitted to being a casual drug user and underachiever before he started running three miles a day. Vogue’s Anna Wintour plays a tennis match every morning, and billionaire Richard Branson says he gets four additional hours of productivity every day by working out.

Here are 11 successful people whose workout routines play a major role in their success.

Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi plans her day during her 45-minute morning power walks.

In an interview with Jane Mayer at The New Yorker, Pelosi admits to touching base with her staff, making thank you calls, and planning out her day during her daily 45-minute power walk.

'It could be anything from what's happening in Libya to what's happening on Capitol Hill in a very, shall we say, parochial way,' she said.

Panera Bread CEO Ron Shaich works out to keep up with the growing demands of his business.

Shaich confessed to Melanie Grayce West at The Wall Street Journal to being 'a couch potato,' but said he 'made a commitment to lose weight and increase his fitness level' in his 50s to 'keep up mentally and physically with the demands of a growing business.'

To force himself to work out, Shaich employs a trainer. The workout consists of running or swimming in his indoor or outdoor pool for one hour, two to three times a week.

Being an 'avid runner and cyclist' is exactly how Senator Wendy Davis survived her 13-hour filibuster.

On June 25, 2013, Davis began a filibuster to block an anti-abortion bill, which led to her standing for 13 consecutive hours without snacking or taking any bathroom breaks. She also wore a back brace so that she wouldn't lean on anything.

Davis wouldn't have been able to pull this off if she didn't say fit. 'An avid runner and cyclist, Davis was in good shape for the physical challenge of standing and talking for nearly 13 hours,' said Jim Vertuno at the Associated Press. Davis said she tries to work out every day, and running is her favourite form of exercise.

Starwood Hotels & Resorts' CEO Frits van Paaschen's runs 10 miles every day.

The chief of Starwood Hotels & Resorts has a workout routine that puts most of us to shame. Not only does he run 10 miles every day, but he starts at 6 a.m.

'Van Paasschen credits running with much of his management style. Business, he says, is about conquering personal fears, setting high goals for yourself and breaking barriers, which in many ways meshes with Starwood's culture,' wrote
Barbara De Lollis at USA Today.

He recently completed the Ironman triathlon, which consists of 2.4 miles of swimming, 112 miles of cycling, and a 26.2-mile run.

The triathlon took the exec just under 13 hours to complete.

Citigroup CEO Michael Corbat follows an exercise regimen called the Spartacus Workout that's meant to 'torch fat.'

The Spartacus Workout is designed to 'torch fat' and 'send your fitness level soaring.' It includes squats, pushups, and dumbbell lifts. He takes 15 seconds of rest in between, and then repeats.

The CEO's fat-torching workouts will give him the relentless focus he needs to cut the fat at Citi, reported Bloomberg News.

No matter where she is in the world, former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice gets up at 4:30 a.m. to work out.

'Part of the secret of travelling well is continuing your routine,' Rice said in an interview with MSNBC. 'So when I'm on the road I absolutely schedule time to get up in the morning and exercise first.'

Rice prefers 40 minutes of cardio exercise, often on a treadmill or elliptical trainer.

Aaron Patzer, founder of Mint.com, lifts weights, runs, and climbs.

'You cannot work, in this instance, 14-hour days without getting a good workout in as a break,' Patzer said. 'The typical workday, particularly in startup mode, is from 9 to 6 or 9 to 7, then you take a two-hour break to work out and eat dinner. By that time you're relaxed, and then you work until midnight or 1 a.m. If there was no break with physical activity, you'd be more tired and less alert.'

His workouts include lifting, running, rock-climbing, and even tree-climbing.

'Whenever I see a tree that is climbable, it must be climbed,' he said. 'Sometimes when I'm on a run, I'll just run up a tree, jump on a branch, and swing off. My favourite tree, in Saratoga, gets me a good 75 feet up.'

Oprah Winfrey combines cardio and meditation to help her power through her busy days.

One of the most powerful women in the world trains hard to keep herself physically healthy. In an interview with O Magazine, Winfrey's trainer said her workouts include '45 minutes of cardio six mornings a week, four to five strength-training sessions a week, incline crunches, and stretching.'

Winfrey also admits to sitting in silence for 20 minutes, twice a day.

Richard Branson gets four additional hours of productivity every day by working out.

When author Tim Ferriss asked the mogul how he stays productive, Branson answered 'work out,' as recorded in Ferriss' 2010 book 'The 4-Hour Body.' Branson said his physical activities, which can include swimming, Bikram Yoga, rock climbing, running, and weightlifting, gives him at least four additional hours of productivity each day.

Before her 6:45 a.m. daily blow-out, Anna Wintour has already played a game of tennis.

Jess Cartner-Morley at The Guardian reported that Wintour, the famed editor-in-chief of American Vogue, wakes up every morning at 5:45 a.m. to play tennis before her daily hair appointment at 6:45 a.m.

This routine keeps Wintour disciplined and moving forward.

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