This Is The Fittest City In The U.S.

Illustrated by Jiro Bevis.
When it comes to fitness levels, some parts of the country have a leg up on the rest of us. And, according to a new report, many of them are in California.

The report is this year's American Fitness Index, recently released by the American College of Sports Medicine. The researchers used data from the most recently available federal sources focusing on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. This is a nationwide phone survey covering health topics. For this project, researchers were interested in factors regarding physical activity level and health outcomes in these areas.

But, the researchers here used Metropolitan Statistical Areas as their definition of a city. These include all the counties of a particular city in which residents live, work, and partake of the community's resources. So, they may give a more accurate picture of the larger community rather than just the urban center.

According to these criteria, the most fit cities were:

1. Washington, D.C.
2. Minneapolis, MN
3. San Diego, CA
4. San Francisco, CA
5. Sacramento, CA
6. Denver, CO
7. Portland, OR
8. Seattle, WA
9. Boston, MA
10. San Jose, CA

The results are pretty similar to the patterns FitBit found earlier this year. According to that analysis, California was among the high-steppers in both winter and summer. And, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and D.C. also made it into the top rankings. But, interestingly, these don't line up so well with another recent national report of health levels, which placed Alaska way at the top. 

Congrats, fit cities! Way to make the rest of us look bad. 

More from Fitness


R29 Original Series