The Sports & Fitness Industry Association will once again flood Capitol Hill with famous athletes on March 4 and 5, taking lawmakers to the mat for additional physical education grants and workout-related tax breaks.
The SFIA is expected to take time out from the full court press to honor two legislative movers, Reps. Earl Blumenauer and Shelley Moore Capito. The dynamic duo will be honored during an invitation-only reception scheduled to take place Tuesday from 5:30-8 p.m. in the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center.
In addition to riding his bicycle almost everywhere he goes, a Blumenauer aide said the Oregon Democrat fills his days with kinetic activities. Per his office, Blumenauer’s daily routine is typically crowded with vigorous morning walks, which he typically takes with California Democrat Sam Farr, and stress-relieving yoga sessions (in the members’ gym).
The avid runner — Team Blumenauer says he’s knocked out 36 marathons (and counting) — also maintains a special birthday tradition: walking one lap around the quarter-mile track of a hometown high school for each year of his life.
“I don’t think anyone has ever made it through the whole walk with him,” Blumenauer spokesman Patrick Malone said of the now 16-plus mile (Blumenauer is 65) challenge.
The West Virginia Republican prefers getting sweaty around diamonds. Capito is a vet of the Congressional Women’s Softball Game and co-captain of the members’ team, and also played on the GOP's Congressional Baseball Team in years past.
Off the field, Capito stretches her legs solo and works her core with friends.
“I run four miles four times a week, mostly outside, and I’m running through the finish line for the Senate,” she quipped, adding that she’s done one half-marathon and pines to tackle a full one.
“I have also been doing spinning and yoga with Tim Murphy, Tulsi Gabbard and Paul Ryan,” Capito shared of her workout crew.
Sports stars expected to fan out across the halls of Congress during this year's “National Health Through Fitness Day” include: NFL legend/reality TV star Herschel Walker, Philadelphia Eagles linebacker Connor Barwin, Baltimore Ravens players Matt Elam and Lardarius Webb, Olympic softball gold medalist Jennie Finch, Olympic swimmer Cullen Jones, Major League Baseball All-Star pitcher Tommy John, Ultimate Fighting Championship brawler Benson Henderson, three-time track and field All-American Brenda Martinez, Olympic water polo silver medalist Peter Hudnut, former NFL player John Booty and four time NFL Pro-Bowler and ex-Washington Redskin Ken Harvey.