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Personal Finance Reports

Best Cities for Staying in Shape

As we get older, our bodies begin to age in ways that we have very little control over. As the years go by, faces become wrinkled, hair begins to thin, and bones ache in ways that seemed unimaginable when you were 16.

However, we have the ability to fight back against the aging process when it comes to one thing: staying in shape.

Luckily for humans, maintaining a good physique is something we have complete control over. By monitoring what goes into our bodies and exercising regularly, we have the ability to stay in shape, regardless of genetics.

Today, there are a multitude of ways in which we can keep our bodies fit and healthy. Whether you are into cross-fit, hot yoga, indoor cycling, or traditional weight-lifting, there seems to be a gym on every corner for every type of exercise. Further, as the fresh, healthy food movement continues to sweep the nation, you will have no trouble finding food establishments that blend taste and nutrition. And, if that is not enough, you can almost always find a health professional that will coach you on how to stay in shape.

As you get older and your work schedule becomes busier, it can be hard to find the time to exercise and make health-conscious purchases. If you want to stay in shape, you want to live in a place that is conducive to that aim. That is why LendEDU has created the Best Cities for Staying in Shape list.

LendEDU’s Best Cities for Staying in Shape report has ranked the 500 American cities that are best suited to keeping you in shape. Over 5,000 cities were analyzed based on four parameters: (1) Population; (2) Healthy Purchases; (3) Healthy Services; (4) Healthy Places.

The rankings constructed by LendEDU are meant to represent the 500 cities in the United States that will make it easiest for you to keep that body sculpted. These cities have the most healthy food places, or the most gyms. They have the most parks to go for a jog, or the most health nutrition consultants to assist you in crafting the perfect diet.

Not only is staying in shape entirely up to you, but choosing what city to live in is also in your control. LendEDU’s Best Cities for Staying in Shape report will help you make the right decision by blending those two choices together.

Best Places for Staying in Shape


For this particular report, over 5,000 cities were analyzed, resulting in the top 500 cities for staying in shape. There were four categories that cities were scored on. These four individual scores were summed together to determine the Final Healthy Score; the maximum Final Healthy Score was 100 points.

Population Score (20 points): Overall population for each city was taken into account and given a weight of 20 percent. Out of the original 5,000 city listing, cities with lower populations scored closer to 20 points while higher population areas scored closer to 0. Note: An original population threshold of 10,000 was implemented; any city falling below the threshold was not analyzed.

Healthy Purchases Score (20 points): The Healthy Purchases Score was weighted 20 percent. This score measures the number of stores or businesses in a city or area that sell retail exercise equipment as well as healthy, nutritious foods. Cities with a higher number of these stores were scored closer to 20 points while the latter were scored closer to 0 points.

Healthy Services Score (25 points): Weighted at 25 percent, the Healthy Services Score represented the number of fitness programs, weight control services, health nutrition consultants, and health exercise consultants in the area. Similar to the Healthy Purchases Score, cities with higher scores had a great number of these programs and services in town.

Healthy Places Score (35 points): As the most heavily weighted metric (35 percent), the Healthy Places Score characterized which cities had the most gyms, sports clubs, public parks, and recreational centers. Like the last two metrics, cities with a greater number of these locations scored closer to 35 points while those with fewer healthy places were scored closer to 0 points.

All data for this report was pulled from Onboard Informatics as licensed by LendEDU, including the number of related businesses as well as population statistics within each city.

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