Fit, Fitter, Fittest


The numbers don’t lie. A report by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recently revealed that Chicago is the 27th ‘fittest city’ of 50 metropolitan areas in the country. The ACSM American Fitness Index, a yearly data report providing a scientific look at health and fitness on the state level, evaluates both personal indicators like health behaviors and community indicators like recreational facilities.

“It doesn’t surprise me,” admits local fitness expert Lisa Payne. “It’s easy for Chicagoans to think our city is healthier than it is with all the summer lakefront activities and bike lanes. But the truth of the matter is that the majority of people drive or take public transportation.”

Organizations like Building A Healthier Chicago continue to urge Chicagoans to be healthier with their F.I.T. (Fresh. Innovative. Tasty) City Plan, which “celebrates and promotes restaurants that dedicate themselves to using healthy ingredients like whole grains and fresh local produce,” explains James Galloway, MD, former assistant surgeon general and founding member of Building Healthier Chicago.

Through the combined efforts of organizations like Building A Healthier Chicago and the work of fitness educators like Ms. Payne could Chicago health and fitness be in the midst of a perpetual upswing? No. 1 – here we come.


About Michelle Phelan

A graduate of Columbia College, Michelle Phelan spent a year as an intern at TCW. She's contributed to a variety of articles in dining, fashion, health and more.