Twin Cities second fittest metro in the nation
Twin Cities residents, despite our insatiable Midwestern lust for dairy and hot dish and fried-things-on-sticks, are among the fittest in the country, according to a study released today by the American College of Sports Medicine. Our fair cities bested the likes of Denver, Boston, and San Francisco, but couldn't quite edge out Washington D.C. for some reason.
The organization's American Fitness Index ranked cities based on data tied to areas such as preventative health, chronic disease and access to care. The study only looked at the 50 largest metro areas.
The Twin Cities earned high marks for having a lower than average percentage of people who smoke, as well as for factors such as dog parks and golf courses per capita. However, the report said Minneapolis/St. Paul has a lower than average percentage of people who eat five or more fruits and vegetables per day. The metro area also has a below-average amount of acres of parkland per capita.
Our nation's capital earned higher marks than Minneapolis-St. Paul in the index thanks to a large percentage of people with health care, unusually high exercise rates, and wide availbility of public transportation. We're not exactly sure how access to public transportation fosters physical fitness (if anything, you would think the preponderance of buses and trains would discourage calorie-generated travel), but whatever, we'll take second place. But once we learn to dig on veggies, it's on.