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Fenty's Fitness for Office

Harburg, who began running and biking with Fenty after a mutual friend brought her to a training session, said Fenty rarely falls behind. "The only time I saw him get dropped was [the day] after he had run a marathon or had some really hard race," she said.

Fenty, 37, who has been running competitively since high school, took up cycling a few years ago after joining Shawn on a training ride during a family vacation.

"He had a ball," Shawn, 43, said. And he invested in an expensive, carbon-fiber Cannondale.

At 6 feet and 180 pounds, Fenty appears the picture of fit, but he hasn't always been that way. In 2000 -- the year his twin sons were born, he wrapped up a long campaign for a D.C. Council seat, and he and his wife renovated their kitchen -- Fenty did not run a single time. He also reached about 215 pounds, Shawn said.

By late 2001, however, Fenty was putting in the mileage again. He was in the midst of training for a marathon in 2003 when he fainted at a news conference held to announce anti-smoking legislation; that's why he is so often seen with a bottle of VitaminWater, colleagues said.

These days, Fenty's weekly training regimen includes one or two long-distance runs, a "speed workout" at the track at Gallaudet University, a couple of cycling sessions and a swim.

By the time Fenty was back at his brother's house yesterday it was almost 2 p.m. He dismounted, went inside for a shower and emerged in his suit, red tie carefully knotted. Aide Veronica Washington returned with the sport-utility vehicle.

Fenty then drove off to a news conference at a nearby firehouse to announce fireworks regulations. As the cameras rolled, beads of sweat glistened on his head.

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