Washington, D.C., Is America’s Fittest City for 2016


Between traffic and politics, Washington, D.C., has a reputation for gridlock.

Don’t tell that to the fitness fanatics who live there.

For the third year in a row, the American Fitness Index has named Washington the overall fittest city in the United States. The nation’s capital has some of the most active people in the country, with a full 80.1% saying they exercised at least once a month, and a diverse and vibrant park system that gives Washingtonians ample space to run, play, and generally get their sweat on, according to the report.

Minneapolis, Minnesota, came in second place. The Twin Cities was No. 1 back in 2013, and it still holds the top spot in a different report published in April by FitBit. Rounding out the top five: Denver, Colorado; Portland, Oregon; and San Francisco.

So how’d they come up with the rankings? The AFI index is based on publicly available data from official sources—things like the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System from the CDC, plus government agencies responsible for parks and communities. Then they organized the factors into two basic categories: personal health—exercise, healthy eating, and preventable disease rates—and the city’s environment (parks, usage of public transit, and walking distance to parks.) You can check out the full explanation here.

The Top 20:

1. Washington, D.C.
2. Minneapolis, Minn.
3. Denver, Colo.
4. Portland, Ore.
5. San Francisco, Calif.

6. Seattle, Wash.
7. Boston, Mass.
8. Salt Lake City, Utah
9. Hartford, Conn.
10. San Diego, Calif.

11. San Jose, Calif.
12. Chicago, Ill.
13. Sacramento, Calif.
14. Atlanta, Ga.

15.5. Austin, Tex.
15.5. Raleigh, N.C.

17. Baltimore, Md.
18. Richmond, Va.
19. Virginia Beach, Va.
20. Milwaukee, Wisc.

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