As Barack Obama prepares to take the helm of a sinking country, he's scaled back on the pastimes of his earlier life—dining out, reading novels, obsessing over Bears and White Sox stats. But one habit has endured: the president-elect is a gym rat who works out every single day, and has the buff physique to prove it. The gym, say his friends, has become Obama's principal refuge.
Like clockwork, the president-elect arrives at a friend's Chicago apartment building around 7:30, where he spends half his workout lifting weights and half doing cardio. Even the day after he won the election, only hours after his Grant Park acceptance speech, Obama hit the gym. "They might think he's just going through the motions," said one friend. "But he goes hard. He's fit. He could convince you he's half his age."