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The Fittest Cities in America: Did Yours Make the List?

Residents of the healthiest cities have plenty of locations for outdoor workouts.

The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recently released their annual American Fitness Index ratings of the nation's fittest cities. The index ranks 50 metropolitan areas across the U.S. based on the health of their communities and residents, with an ultimate goal of inspiring all cities to improve their position on the list. Nothing compares to a little healthy competition!

A few weeks ago, the 2011 American Fitness Index report was released and (drumroll please...) Minneapolis-St. Paul has been named the healthiest metro area. Washington D.C., Boston, Portland and Denver rounded out the top five. The locations that didn't fare so well: Detroit, Birmingham, Memphis, Louisville and Oklahoma City.

So what makes for a fit community?

  • High number of recreational facilities (golf courses, parks, pools, etc.)
  • Many residents using public transportation, biking or walking to work
  • Low levels of smoking, obesity, asthma and diabetes
  • Large percentage of residents with health insurance
  • High rates of citizens reporting that they have exercised in the last 30 days, are moderately active and eat five or more fruit/vegetable servings daily

Now tell us: How fit is your city? What are the wellness strengths of your community and where could it improve?