If you’ve shaped your life around staying active (or aspire to do so!), moving to a new city can really shake things up — hopefully in the best of ways. Getting and staying in shape is near the top of nearly everyone’s goals these days, but not every city is set up to support that vision. So to ensure you can maintain your movement practice and land in a community of like-minded, fit people, we’ve compiled a list of the fittest cities in the US as your jumping-off point. From locales with the most indoor gyms to abundant outdoor recreation, we’ll help you find the best new city for you.
Nestled in a valley in northwest Montana, Missoula has it all: abundant outdoor opportunities for every kind of athlete as well as plenty of fitness businesses to keep everyone active. You can rock climb indoor as well as in the local canyons, hike the seemingly infinite miles of trails just on the edge of town, and 10% of Missoula residents walk or bike to work — even through the winter. There are 125 fitness businesses per 10,000 residents, and they span the range from yoga studios to CrossFit gyms to dance classes to indoor cycling. It seems like a perfect equation for one of the most fitness-friendly cities in the US for 2020.
This probably doesn’t come as a surprise, but Boulder residents love to move — making this one of the fittest cities in America. 10% of them ride their bikes or walk to work, and there are tons of opportunities for outdoor recreation all year round when you’re living at the foot of the Rocky Mountains. Skiing, cycling, running, hiking, paddling, you name it and there are ample opportunities to get you moving. There are almost 108 fitness businesses per 10,000 workforce members, so you’ve got somewhere to go on those days that the weather doesn’t allow you to get outside. Yoga, CrossFit, indoor climbing, and even boutique fitness studios keep everyone in this mountain town in top condition and put it near the top of the list of cities with the most gyms.
The weather in Austin never gets too cold, making outdoor recreation possible year-round with fewer chances for frostbite. There are 38.5 gyms and fitness centers per million people, and we’ve heard that Austin residents are also some of the healthiest eaters out there — eating an average of 33.6 servings of fruits and vegetables every week, says the Huffington Post. If you’re moving to Austin, try out a new fitness class with something creative like parkour, or study a new style of dance to get your sweat on.
In this bustling East Coast city, you might not think fitness would be a top concern — but there is a strong movement culture running through Boston that puts it among the cities with the most active lifestyle. There is an abundance of yoga studios in Boston so you can get your stretch on whatever neighborhood you live in, and the presence of the Boston Marathon means you’ll never be at a lack for running buddies. Raise your sails and go boating on the Charles River or take advantage of the miles of biking paths throughout the city. There are 101 fitness centers per 10,000 people in the workforce, so when the Nor’Easters hit you can head inside to sweat.
Don’t want to shell out for a gym membership for those stormy days? Build a home gym! The equipment has become more affordable and efficient, meaning you can still get a good workout without leaving the house.