The Fittest and Fattest Cities

Men’s Fitness has just released their list of the fittest and fattest cities in the USA. These kind of endeavors are always tricky since it’s not as easy as putting everyone on a scale and getting the average. The authors of the piece looked at several aspects:

  • Fitness Centers & Sport Stores
  • Nutrition
  • Sports Participation
  • TV Viewing
  • Overweight/Sedentary
  • Junk Food
  • Air Quality
  • Geography
  • Commute
  • Parks & Open Spaces
  • City Rec Facilities
  • Access to healthcare 
  • Motivation
  • Mayor & City Initiatives
  • State Obesity Initiatives
  • Then, they graded each aspect and tallied the score. The results were interesting with winter sports mecca Salt Lake City, UT being named the fittest city and near tropical paradise Miami landing the fattest spot. I guess this proves that good weather is pointless if you don’t take advantage of it and bad weather doesn’t have to be a disadvantage.

    I found it interesting that my city, Cleveland (well, the nearest city since I live in the country), made the fit list at number 15. We were docked for low air quality, junk food, few parks, and television watching while we succeeded in fitness options, commute, motivation, and sports participation. I think this is fairly accurate of how I would view Cleveland.

    Another Ohio city, Columbus, made the fattest list. I used to live in Columbus, and I would agree with that assessment as well. They got docked on most areas, so I’ll just mention where some positives emerged: sports participation, commute, and motivation. I guess all that motivation just doesn’t get translated into actual action.

    Philadelphia’s leaders, upon finding they made the fattest list, actually took concrete steps to correct that and are now off the list. Let’s hope Miami and the others find a way to get off it too.

    Where is your city and do you agree with the assessment?