From “Becoming” and “The Light We Carry” to her numerous TV appearances and interviews, Michelle Obama has always been very open about who she is with the media. However, if anyone could corroborate what she’s said, it would be someone who watched over her and her family for years. Thankfully, according to her ex-secret service agent, Cory Allen, the former first lady is as authentic as they come.
Allen was first assigned to the Obama family in 2016, and was later entrusted with Michelle’s protection in particular. As he recounted in an interview with Katie Couric Media, he’d stepped in right as the Obamas left the White House. Suffice it to say, he was inspired by his protectee.
That inspiration was based on several things — one of the major ones being her authenticity. In fact, it was thanks in no small part to Michelle’s openness that he decided he wanted to write his memoir, “Breaking Free: A Saga of Self-discovery by a Gay Secret Service Agent.” “The way she can just be herself certainly inspired me … I thought it would be amazing if I could make just a fraction of the impact she’s had,” he said of the book
Even as his time as an agent wound down, he told the outlet, both Michelle and Barack Obama were incredibly laid-back. And yes, connecting with others and prioritizing fitness really are a big part of her day-to-day.
Michelle Obama has a reputation for being warm, and according to Cory Allen, that’s no exaggeration. Speaking to Katie Couric Media, her former security detail shared that he had been blown away by just how kind both she and Barack Obama were. For starters, he explained, both of them made a point of asking how he and the other agents were doing, every day
Allen has similarly gone on to tell a number of other outlets about just how welcomed he felt by the family. To OutClique, he said, “They radiate warmth. She still knew who I was six months after I left the agency when I saw them in San Francisco.” Likewise, speaking to Pink Media / #ILoveGay, he gushed that both of them were as lovely as they were portrayed to be.
Granted, Allen has also said that conversations were generally not super personal, and he avoided opening up too much. As he told Katie Couric Media, he felt his home life wasn’t necessarily relevant to the job at hand. However, there’s a good chance that if he had shared more, that would have been welcomed by Michelle as well. As Michelle explained in her Netflix documentary, “Becoming,” she saw her previous security service agent, Allen Taylor, as a brother figure.
It’s no secret that Michelle Obama has a passion for fitness. She’s even joked that she’s known to do whatever she can to get her loved ones moving, as well. As she wrote in “The Light We Carry,” she organizes regular, movement-filled bootcamp weekends for her friends, with non-negotiable workouts. Naturally, as Cory Allen explained in his interview with Pink Media / #ILoveGay, that included him and the other agents, too
“We would go on 14-mile hikes through the Malibu hills, and SoulCycling, and, you know, you have to be there, and you have to be involved, because we’re protecting them,” he reminisced. That was just one layer of the pressure, though. As he joked with Katie Couric Media, he’d be doing all the above while wearing his protective gear. What’s more, he and his colleagues had to be faster than the super-fit former FLOTUS. “If we’re on the slopes in Aspen, you can’t let the first lady pass you,” he explained. Fair enough!
Luckily, Allen shared her love of working out, so he enjoyed the challenge. That said, even if he wasn’t a fitness enthusiast, it wouldn’t have mattered. He’s previously taken to Instagram to share throwback shots of him and colleagues on a hike, with the caption, “Fitness was a requirement with Michelle O!” The former first lady is as warm as can be — but there’s no getting out of physical activity with her.