There is a race to the finish line when it comes to the fittest states in America. It’s no secret that our country has long been among the unhealthiest in the world. A fact made worse in the pandemic when nearly 50% of Americans added to their waistline.
It turns out that while some of us are experiencing tighter clothing, others of us are getting… well, tighter and in better shape. In fact, some states are closer to getting the totally toned, six-pack abs. while others are just packing on the pounds. And that is just on what we can see.
On the inside, the CDC has reported that almost 14% of U.S. adults are in poor or fair health. In fact, the country has high rates of chronic diseases – an unprecedented 1 in 3 Americans are obese and one in nine have diabetes.
It’s not all bad news though. Most people across all 50 states say they’ve exercised recently and that they’ve gotten a regular wellness checkup within the past year. Whether it’s because fitness is a key part of the local culture or residents having more opportunities to stay healthy, some states are in better shape than others.
Our in-shape friends over at RunReviews.com did a circuit all over the nation in search of the fittest states. Using health status like obesity and lifestyle indicators such as wellness checkups from participants and available gyms, they were able to determine which states are in the best shape, and which ones are the unhealthiest.
Get warmed up, find your favorite workout song and ready your muscles for journey around the fittest states in America.
5 Fittest States in America
1. Washington, D.C.
The District of Columbia may not be a state on its own, but it does happen to be in the best shape in the U.S. Washington D.C. scored above-average on every measure but one. Just 71.8% of adults had an annual wellness checkup in the past year, below the nationwide rate of 74.9%.
That could be because Washingtonians are pretty healthy already: D.C. has the lowest rates of diabetes and heart disease (tied with Utah), and more gyms per 100,000 population than anywhere else, at 20.1.
Massachusetts takes second in the list of fittest cities in America. New Englanders have a high score in terms of gym availability (18.5 per 100,000 residents) giving residents plenty of chances to get moving during the harsh Northern winters.
Home to the Boston Marathon, this state is a shoe-in when it comes to accommodating the residents who put fitness at the top of their list.
In the number three spot is the state of Colorado. The Rocky Mountain region boasts the lowest obesity rate in the country at 24.2%.
Colorado offers ample skiing in the winter and hiking almost year round. These outdoor activities alone make this a desirable state for your exercise loving friends. Not to mention, with some of the most spectacular fall foliage, the state practically begs its residents to get outside and get fit.
“We’re one of the healthiest states in the nation,” said then Governor Dannel Malloy. The statement came when Connecticut was ranked 3rd healthiest state in the nation according to the United Health Foundation’s annual health rankings. The previous year Connecticut was ranked 6th proving that its residents are committed to fitness.
5. New Hampshire
It would seem the East coast has dominated the top five with the addition of New Hampshire. With almost 20 gyms available for every 100,000 people, New Hampshire has their residents covered.
The state also boasts some of the best hiking in the country, especially during fall.
At the bottom of the list are Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi and Arkansas. The state of West Virginia came in dead last among the fittest states in America.
We jogged all over the country in search of the fittest states in America. Take a look at the shape the top five are in.