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The Healthiest US Cities to Vacation or Live In

| 12/10/2015 8:54:00 AM

Most of us strive to be two things: happy and healthy. According to a study published in the Health Behavior and Policy Review journal, optimistic people are twice as likely to have healthy hearts. Research shows a positive attitude can influence wellness. Along with optimism, factors such as relationships, job, diet, activity level and even where you live can impact the quality of your health. So, where are the best places for fitness fanatics, health gurus and wellness warriors?

woman jogging in front of city graffiti
Photo by shutterstock.

The ASCM American Fitness Index (AFI) ranked the healthiest cities in the U.S. based on personal health, community and environmental indicators supporting healthy and active lifestyles. The following metropolitan areas ranked as the top five in health and fitness status for 2015. If you want to live in a health-focused environment, find fitness inspiration or go on an active and adventurous vacation, here are your top urban destinations.

Washington, D.C.

Hundreds of thousands of people move to D.C. because of a new job or job transfer. In addition to attracting workaholics, D.C. also attracts workoutaholics and was dubbed the fittest metro area in the nation. If you want to make this fit city your hometown, check out Apartment Guide to find a luxury apartment with the right pool, gym and amenities to support your active lifestyle.


Minneapolis is so livable in part because of its park system, which covers 17 percent of the city. In 2014, the Trust for Public Land ranked the city's park system as the best in the country. These parks provide an accessible outdoor area where people can walk, run and play. A low percentage of smokers, high percentage of residents who engage in physical activity and a large number of health care providers also support the city's attractiveness in health and fitness.

San Diego

As if the beach, laid-back California vibe and SoCal sun weren't enough to make San Diego the perfect place to live or vacation, it ranks as No. 3 on the list of healthy and fit locales. This California city offers sunshine and moderate weather for enjoyable outdoor activities year round. Check out highlights by San Diego Magazine for a variety of ways to stay in shape and avoid being a beach bum, from standup paddleboard yoga to doggie bootcamps.

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