Posts in the ‘In the News’ Category

2018 Physical Activity Guidelines – How to Meet the Goals in Everyday Activities

The other day I heard a story about a woman who hated to exercise. She wanted nothing of it: going to the gym, sweating, walking on the treadmill. Boring. No way! She’d heard about the latest 2018 U.S. Physical Activity Guidelines, but had dismissed them as irrelevant to her life. Recently, she stumbled onto an article that said the activities she was doing in everyday life counted as exercise and that moving more could actually make her feel better. “Cleaning the house, sweeping the porch, mowing the lawn, and walking my child to school are exercise? Really? I need to…

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Getting up to speed on Complete Streets: 9 things you should know

Complete Streets. You’ve heard of it, but you’re not exactly sure what it means or how it can benefit your community. Our friends at the National Complete Streets Coalition (NCSC) put together a handy Q&A to help understand some of the basics of Complete Streets. #1 Who is the National Complete Streets Coalition? The National Complete Streets Coalition, a program of Smart Growth America, is a non-profit, non-partisan alliance of public interest organizations and transportation professionals committed to the development and implementation of Complete Streets policies and practices. We believe that the streets of our cities and towns must allow…

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active transportation

Active Transportation Choices May Affect Your Wallet and Waistline

It is not surprising that having healthy habits, like walking every day, is one way to fight the holiday bulge. But did you know that it can also keep a little extra padding in your pocketbook? As colder weather sets in many of us look forward to a fun and festive holiday season. This busy time of year and its blustery winter weather can also mean that some of our summertime activities and active transportation habits become a distant memory. Add to that the surplus of heart-warming treats and holiday beverages, and it’s easy to see why so many of…

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Anchorage Alaska Parks

Love parks? Anchorage, Alaska is the place for you!

Anchorage has more public access to park space per city acre than any other state in the United States, and its extremely variable climate presents the unique opportunity of hosting both winter and summer sports. Anchorage, the largest city in the state of Alaska, is surrounded by majestic mountain ranges and covered with forest and open fields. Recently, Anchorage was top of the “Parks” category in the 2018 American College of Sports Medicine’s American Fitness Index. The Municipality of Anchorage, with 84.2 percent covered in parkland, easily leads the country for space designated to parks in a city. Anchorage also…

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Parks: More Than Just a Playground

Summertime is in full swing, and, for many of us, it’s the time of year we consider engaging with the great outdoors. However, as much as we might like, we can’t make every day a journey into nature … or can we? Local parks are a significant way to bring a piece of nature into our neighborhoods. And perhaps surprisingly, they may be doing a lot more good than just being a place to take the kids for a push on the swing. It’s not a stretch of the imagination that parks help communities be more physically active. The relationship…

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7 Tips for Shopping at Your Local Farmers Market

There are nearly 9,000 farmers markets currently in operation across the United States. With offerings ranging from fresh fruits and vegetables to locally raised meats to fresh cut flowers and more, your local farmers market plays a huge role in both the accessibility of nourishing food and the stimulation of the local economy. August 5-11, 2018 is National Farmers Market Week, and it’s the perfect time to explore your local market. To get the most out of your experience, remember these seven easy tips: Plan out your trip. Make sure you know the location of the market and its hours….

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2018 American Fitness Index Overview Infographic

According to the 2018 ACSM American Fitness Index, the top 10 fittest cities in the U.S. are: Arlington, VA Minneapolis, MN Washington, D.C. Madison, WI Portland, OR Seattle, WA Denver, CO St. Paul, MN San Jose, CA Boise, ID Share this infographic and the Fitness Index with your city officials and local leaders to start a conversation on making your city a healthier place for all residents. Download a PDF of the Infographic here.

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We’re Expanding! Fitness Index will now rank America’s 100 largest cities

The American Fitness Index is proud to announce that the 2018 rankings will be released on May 15th! This year’s rankings feature some exciting changes.  We’re expanding! For the first ten years of the Fitness Index, the rankings evaluated the 50 largest metro areas. This approach provided important and valuable general messages, but limited the ability to provide targeted assistance to city and community leaders that need specific data at the local level. With the May 15th release of the 2018 rankings, the Fitness Index will expand to the 100 largest cities in the U.S. This approach distinguishes the largest…

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Fruit and Vegetables Fuel Good Health

  You were always told you to eat fruit and vegetables – and it turns out that was very smart advice! It has been well established that diet and physical fitness are strongly linked. However, high levels of physical activity can’t make up for a poor diet, any more than healthy eating can remove the need for physical activity. In fact, researchers have consistently reported that exercise alone is not likely to effectively reduce weight – a change in eating patterns is required. Unhealthy eating is a known risk factor for many leading causes of disease, including heart disease, diabetes, stroke and some cancers. The ACSM…

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Good Sleep: An Indicator of Good Health

Regularly getting a good night’s sleep is so important for good health that it was added as an indicator to the American Fitness Index last year. The 2018 American Fitness Index Rankings will also list “percent getting seven or more hours of sleep per day” as one of the personal health indicators that are used to calculate the final rankings. The source of data for this indicator is the CDC’s Behavior Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) national telephone survey. As you might imagine, the telephone survey methods used are very rigorous to make sure the results are as accurate as…

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