Surprise City Earns Top Spot On American Fitness Index

Hayley Hoefer Contributor
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Washington D.C. may be a city embroiled in political controversy and corruption, but the United States’ capital is also the nation’s healthiest and fittest city, according to the 2014 American Fitness Index released by the American College of Sports Medicine.

In an effort to further promote her campaign against childhood obesity, Michelle Obama has recently defended the new U.S. Department of Agriculture guidelines that require schools to serve healthier school lunches. Well, her current hometown appears to be leading the way in regard to physical wellness.

D.C. stole the title from Minneapolis-St. Paul, which had reigned as the healthiest and fittest American city for the past three years. The capital gained much of its edge in the rankings due to its numerous public amenities that encourage physical activity and healthy living, such as its tennis courts and pools. Additionally, D.C. reported relatively low death rates from cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Overall, the American Fitness Index provides major U.S. metropolitan areas with a quantitative way to evaluate and compare their commitment to health and fitness. Indeed, the report could prove particularly useful for cities like Memphis, which ranked last in the index, and Louisville, which ranked as number forty-nine out of the fifty on the index.