The Fittest and Fattest Cities in America
A geographical breakdown on where you can find the super fit and the super fat.
Fittest City: Portland
Portlandia is all about friendship. It’s a friendly place: fitness-friendly, walk-friendly, diet- friendly, and friendly to everything else that entails getting outside and moving around. It’s especially friendly to cyclists. A perennial favorite on lists of America’s top cycling cities, Portland is the only burg on our lists to earn a platinum distinction from the League of American Cyclists.
The 25 Fittest Cities:
2. San Francisco
8. San Diego
14. San Jose
18. Virginia Beach
21. New york
23. Oklahoma City
25. San Antonio
In fact, 6.1% of all male residents ride their bikes to work, by far the highest ratio of any U.S. city. Portland isn’t just about cycling, though: 54.7% of adults in the Rose City perform at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity five or more days per week. Temperatures rarely sink below freezing in winter months, and air quality and ozone levels are nearly perfect. Portlanders simply don’t like staying inside. Would you?
As the top-ranked locale in our Healthy City index, it makes sense that, according to the CDC,40.3% of Portland residents weigh in within healthy parameters. Fresh air, fresh food, a thriving fitness culture—and easy access to world class health care—make Portland tops.
Fit Facts from the Fittest Cities:
Number of Cities with Zero High ozone days: 3 (San Francisco, Omaha, and Honolulu)
The Coldest City: Colorado springs 161—mean number of days below 32°
The most active city: San Diego — 54.5% do at least one core fitness activity (yoga, swimming, kickboxing, etc.) more than 50 times a year
Healthiest Cities (Percentage of residents with a healthy body weight): San Francisco (44.8) Oakland (44.8) Honolulu (43.9) Albuquerque (43.3) Boston (43.2)
Oklahoma City made a huge turnaround after getting mentioned on our Fattest Cities list, and became out biggest Success Story.
In Oakland: More than 90% are smoke-free.
Albuquerque has 67.5 acres of Parkland per 1,000 residents
In Austin 31.1% of residents are cardio fanatics
Washington, D.C. is the happiest city in America, according to a Gallup survey
Boston: Bostonians spend 92% less than the national average on Fast Food, according to Bundle
Minneapolis is ranked by Sperling’s Best Places as the best place for restful sleep
In San Francisco, 30.6% of resident eat veggies at least five times a day