RFK Jr. Works Out . . . in Jeans?

Advice
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JUNE 02: Robert F. Kennedy Jr. visits

In today’s episode of “Odd Things on the Internet,” we have a few choice videos of Robert F. Kennedy Jr., nephew of John F. Kennedy, working out in jeans. The politician plans to face off with Joe Biden for the Democratic presidential nomination next year, and his latest, uh, campaign materials include footage of him doing a bench press and push-ups shirtless with jeans and a belt.

The bench-press video was first shared on Twitter on June 24 by fitness coach Ryan Calder, who stepped in to spot Kennedy for his last set of bench presses at what looks to be the outdoor weight room at Venice Beach’s Gold’s Gym, known as the “mecca of bodybuilding.”

The next day, RFK Jr. tweeted a push-up video from the same workout, writing: “Getting in shape for my debates with President Biden!” (For the record, there are none currently scheduled.) He followed it with a series of replies establishing health and wellness as part of his political platform, saying: “As President, I will restore America as the global example of health & well-being. Not through pills or syringes, but through character and self-discipline. And I will continue to walk the walk and lead by example.” He noted that “Americans gained an average of 29 pounds during the Covid lockdowns” (not true, BTW) and promised to “help turn this around by encouraging our citizens to exercise, eat well, and fortify their immune systems by removing harmful chemicals from our food.”

And before anyone could troll his rep count, Kennedy also added: “p.s. And yes, I can do more than 10 pushups. That was my last set.”

As a trainer, I couldn’t help but notice that Kennedy could benefit from a little more extension in those push-ups for them to be considered complete (i.e., he didn’t straighten his arms enough), but I’ll let it slide considering his form otherwise is pretty solid, especially as part of a full-on chest workout. Although I take personal offense to his outfit — jeans never have a place in the gym, let alone with a belt — I respect the fact that he’s still getting after it in the weight room at 69 years old. Calder also added in another tweet that Kennedy benched a few reps of 230 pounds (twice what’s shown in the video), which by all means is an impressive feat at any age.

Overall, the response from the internet has been pretty supportive — of his fitness journey, at least. Things get more contested when it comes to both his politics (including his stance on vaccines) and his outfit.

This may be the first time a potential presidential candidate has campaigned on working out, and while a noble cause, we’re hoping it doesn’t catch on; after all, the last thing we need is a partisan lens applied to fitness. (There are enough things keeping people out of the weight room as it is.)

“Start doing your morning calisthenics everybody,” Kennedy also tweeted in the thread, which we cosign — just please don’t do it in jeans.

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