Thursday, February 21, 2008

Fittest and fattest U.S. cities

June is bustin’ out all over. How about you? For several years, the guys at Men’s Fitness magazine have rated the top 25 fattest and fittest cities in the United States. Of course, Men’s Fitness is published in Southern California, where long legs, slim hips, tight abs, and a taste for sprouts are handed out at birth. As a result, the magazine’s pundits may not know that in other places like, oh, New York, Chicago, Milwaukee, youpick-it, Americans come in all shapes and sizes. And they may have missed the fact that running for a bus or climbing subway stairs constitutes a daily workout in metro areas. Or that compared to high-fat, goat-cheese pizza, a West Coast fave, city bagels are health food.

Nonetheless, the magazine’s lists are a warning for the weighty. I’ll tell you right off the bat that in 2005, the 25 fittest cities (starting with the best) were Seattle, Honolulu, Colorado Springs, San Francisco, Denver, Portland (Oregon), Tucson, San Diego, Albuquerque, Boston, Virginia Beach (Virginia), Minneapolis, Fresno, Milwaukee, Omaha, San Jose (California), Jacksonville, Austin, Oakland, Los Angeles, Arlington (Texas), Washington, D.C., Cleveland, and Nashville-Davidson. Yay!

The 25 fattest (starting with the worst) were Houston, Philadelphia, Detroit, Memphis, Chicago, Dallas, New Orleans, New York, Las Vegas, San Antonio, El Paso, Phoenix, Indianapolis, Fort Worth, Mesa (Arizona), Columbus (Ohio), Wichita (Kansas), Miami (Florida), Long Beach (California), Oklahoma City, Tulsa, Atlanta, Charlotte (North Carolina), and Baltimore. Shape up, guys. Men’s Fitness is watching you!

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