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Macron urges French to work out in Olympic year

President Emmanuel Macron on Monday urged French people to start exercising daily as Paris prepares to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer.

Posting a video clip of himself on X, formerly Twitter, in a T-shirt, boxing gloves slung over his shoulder and with a punching bag in the background, the president urged his compatriots to work out 30 minutes a day, “and longer if you can”.

Sports is beneficial “for health and for lots of other things, and it’s also a way to make the Olympics part of our daily routine”, Macron, 46, said. 

With 200 days remaining before the Games kick off on July 26, Macron said the government was promoting sports “as a great national cause” this year, including by boosting physical education instruction in schools.

The president said he hoped France would win “many medals” at the Games, and increasing numbers of amateurs would start working out.

Macron occasionally puts on boxing gloves in public and has been seen sparring with professional coaches or with his bodyguards.

Analysing his skills, specialist YouTube channel Boxe Attitude last year observed that “the president has a good jab, fast and energetic”, “good reflexes” and “doesn’t give away the direction of a jab”.

Despite a “certain stiffness”, he manifestly “trains regularly”, Boxe Attitude said.

Officials in Macron’s office said the government had already met the target it set in 2017 to have three million more people exercising regularly, and was now aiming for another three million by 2027.

The Paris Summer Olympics run to August 11 and the Paralympic Games from August 28 to September 8.

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