This caught my attention only because the places I’ve lived mark the extreme ends of the study. According to research by Laura Roberson, Washington DC is the fourth most active city in the country, while the capitals of my home states are among the least active, with Little Rock, Ark., ranking 94th and Oklahoma City finishing 96th. A little background on the criteria for the study:
Summer is the season for kicking back and doing nothing, which means it’s always summer in Lexington, Kentucky. In fact, folks there didn’t need to lift a finger to be named America’s Most Sedentary City, since movement of any kind means you’re not a committed couch potato.
Now, we don’t doubt the Lexington work ethic—it’s the workout ethic we question. We looked at where and how often people exercise (Experian Marketing Services); the percentage of households that watch more than 15 hours of cable a week and buy more than 11 video games a year (Mediamark Research); and the rate of deaths from deep-vein thrombosis, a condition linked to a lot of sitting (CDC). And since some people define “exercise” loosely, we gave credit for any physical activity in the past month (CDC).
Might I suggest that a little less activity in DC might benefit the rest of the country? Of course, I’m not speaking about physical activity …
But, seriously, why are some of the most liberal cities at the top? (Seattle and San Francisco rank No. 1 and 2 respectively.) And why do red-staters (and Blue Dog Democrats) appear, at first glance, to be content to chill on the couch? What’s the deal here?