Washington, D.C. may be more famous for political gridlock, but apparently the capitol city knows how to get one thing done correctly – fitness.
The second annual list of America’s fittest cities published by the WellPoint Foundation has been released, and Washington, D.C. has landed itself in the top spot. It made its way up from fourth place in 2008.
The WellPoint Foundation collected data from the 50 largest metropolitan areas in the United States. There is only one other year to compare the statistics, but what the second year allows the researchers is to evaluate the progress or regression of the areas examined. Read Full Post >
The capital of the United States, Washington D.C., is known for its history and humid subtropical weather. It definitely has four distinct seasons, thus making it a great location for running. Although D.C. is mostly flat, it offers several great places to run, walk, or bike. Below are the best and safest places to run in the Washington D.C. area.
Best Places to Run in Washington D.C.
Rock Creek Park: Extends about 12 miles from the Potomac River to the border of Maryland. This urban park offers over 25 miles of trails and is a great place to enjoy the day. Either jog it or take the family out for a picnic. Safety is not an issue due to the fact that a park ranger is on staff. Read Full Post >
People choose their hometowns for many reasons such as job requirements, family and friends and weather, but have you considered choosing a city because it is a healthy place to live and can help you meet your fitness goals? The American Fitness index recently released a listing of America’s Fittest Cities; 45 metropolitan areas were accessed on 30 scales including causes of death, diet of residents, mental health, physician availability, and percentage of the population that walk or bike to work. Forbes was surprised that Washington D.C. was ranked as America’s fittest metropolitan area, beating out Denver, Seattle, and San Diego.
America’s Top 10 Fittest Cities:
1. Washington DC
2. Minneapolis Read Full Post >
I’m an adventurous eater. That is, I love experiencing foods from other cultures. It’s one of the things I miss about the Washington DC area. Strip malls aren’t just for Applebee’s. You have the choice of Indian, Afghani, Greek, Japanese… you name it. Then downtown you can go to an Ethiopian restaurant or Chinatown. But, I’m not adventurous in the Fear Factor sorta way. And I’m certainly not the type of person who thought that what the world needed was a cheeseburger in a can.
As the mayor of one of the country’s fattest cities, Mick Cornett is not taking this one sitting down. He appeared on Ellen’s show last week where he introduced the country to Oklahoma City’s million pound weight loss initiative- This City is Going On A Diet. They built a Web site of the same name where Oklahoma City citizens can create a free account, track their weight and find valuable resources to help them in their effort.
There is a generous list of weight loss programs, local trainers and nutritionists and other advice about eating right and staying active. Mayor Cornett explains that without the program and the site “We’d be doing a disservice to our citizenry by pretending the obesity epidemic is going away on its own. We have to change what we expect. This is something that we as a community can take on and turn around.”
Since launching This City is Going on a Diet January 1, Oklahoma City has lost more than 13,000 pounds. The goal is for the city to lose a million pounds- and unlike the Just Lose It Meridian campaign in Meridian, MS championed by fellow mayor John Robert Smith, Oklahoma City doesn’t have a deadline. “There’s no time limit on the program. As long as it’s working and successful- there’s no reason to stop it,” explains Mick.
In addition to putting the resources together to create this weight loss program, Oklahoma City also has 300 miles of new sidewalks planned and putting in nearly 50 new elementary gymnasiums. “We have to turn the culture to a community that places a high priority on healthcare, values young people and is more pedestrian friendly,” says Mick. What does Oklahoma City gain in return? The Mayor says “We gain a more energetic workforce and citizenry.”
While Oklahoma City tops the country in the most fast food restaurants per capita in the U.S. (a fact the Mayor places on being an auto-based community and the low price of land making it easy for companies to support their business model), it has no plans to put a moratorium on the opening of these restaurants.
The Mayor was headed out yesterday to Washington D.C. for the bi-annual Conference of Mayors. While the agenda is set in advance and no discussion about Oklahoma City’s or Meridian’s weight loss initiatives are slated, he imagines he’ll have an opportunity to share thoughts with Mayor John Robert Smith among others to compare notes and possibly encourage others to follow suit.
The Mayor seems to be traveling a lot- as he’s just back from his visit to Ellen in L.A. Of his visit with Ellen? “It was a lot of fun. I was so impressed by her talent.” He thought that compared to her, and what her audience is used to, he thought his topic was a little mundane. But apparently Ellen helped spread the word because OKC’s This City is Going on a Diet had 2,000 sign-ups that day alone.
As per usual with Ellen’s guests, everyone was anticipating a dance from Mayor Cornett. He got off easy since the host was sick that day, but he says “I was prepared if necessary, but not disappointed about not dancing.”
Thanks Mayor for visiting with us today- and good luck to Oklahoma City on shedding those pounds!