The most successful people know that exercise is the key to mentally and physically pushing themselves further, though some are more willing to keep up the habit than others.
Numerous studies have found exercise to be one of the most important habits you can develop to transform your life. Working out can make you healthier, happier, and better able to sleep; it can boost your memory, concentration, and mental sharpness; and you don't need to spend a lot of time doing it to reap the benefits.
From tennis to surfing to basketball, here are the exercise habits of 15 successful people.
Vivian Giang contributed to an earlier version of this article.President Barack Obama sweats it out 45 minutes a day, six days a week.
Exercise has helped the president become the man he is today. Obama admitted in his autobiography "Dreams From My Father," to being a casual drug user and underachiever until he started running three miles a day.
Today, he continues to stick to his workout routine, which is a combination of strength and cardio. In an interview with Men's Health, Obama said he works out for 45 minutes, six days a week. He'll even wake up early to work out despite not being a morning person.
He's also known to play basketball on courts in federal buildings around Washington.
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, give him at least four additional hours of productivity each day.
Warren Buffett chooses exercise over diet.
The billionaire loves his hamburgers, hot dogs, and Coca-Cola.
To avoid a change in diet as suggested to him by doctors, he chose to exercise instead, the "lesser of the two evils," he told CNBC.
US Sen. Cory Booker cycles off the pounds.
Booker, a vegetarian and teetotaler, struggled with weight gain during his first Senate campaign in 2013. "I'm eating my way through New Jersey," he told the Post at the time.
He's since recommitted to health and fitness, according to his Facebook page, and, based on some of his tweets, he's a huge fan of SoulCycle.
Anna Wintour plays a game of tennis in the wee hours of the morning.
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.
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.
Christian Rudder shoots hoops every Sunday.
From 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Sunday, the OKCupid founder plays basketball at P.S. 20 on the Lower East Side, he told the New York Times.
"I look forward to it a lot because it's one of the few steady things I do. I love the exercise; I played basketball a lot as a kid."
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.
Nick Woodman shreds some waves.
Woodman, founder and CEO of sports-camera company GoPro, was named the highest-paid US chief executive last year. His company got its start from his passion for surfing.
No just an avid surfer, Woodman is a noted adrenaline junkie, snowboarder, and mountain biker.
Ryan Holmes uses yoga to heal and refresh.
The Hootesuite CEO wrote that he was extremely active when he was younger, but back injuries began to catch up with him as he was ramping up his company.
"I turned to yoga as a way to strengthen my core and give my body time to heal," he said in a Business Insider article. "But I quickly discovered that the physical benefits were easily matched by the mental benefits."
"It gave me time to clear my head, unpack the volumes of new information I was absorbing each day and then come back with a new, clearer perspective on the problems at hand. On top of that, it’s a great workout."
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.
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.
Kat Cole strikes a pose no matter where she is.
Cole, the group president of FOCUS Brands, the parent company of brands like Auntie Anne's, Carvel, and Cinnabon, has an "on the road" routine and an "at home" one, both of which incorporate early morning yoga.
As early as 5:30 a.m., Cole will do yoga and exercises in her hotel room, the gym, or at home, for 30 minutes, she said in a Business Insider article.
Aaron Patzer lifts weights, runs, and climbs.
"You cannot work, in this instance, 14-hour days without getting a good workout in as a break," The Mint.com founder told Life magazine. "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 favorite tree, in Saratoga, gets me a good 75 feet up."
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