REBLEM may be the FITTEST person on CMG

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REBLEM may be the FITTEST person on CMG

Post by Gary » Sat Feb 10, 2007 12:25 am

Albuquerque tops fittest city list

SUE MAJOR HOLMES, Associated Press Writer

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Albuquerque's mayor says the city has a lot of options to keep people fit — everything from gyms to hiking and biking.

And because of those options, "Albuquerque is a very fit city," Mayor Martin Chavez said.

New Mexico's largest city was listed as the fittest city in the United States in March's issue of Men's Fitness magazine, up from a 13th-place showing last year.

"Albuquerque is turned on, and recognition like this just fuels that phenomenon," Chavez said. "Nothing succeeds like success, or I guess you could say nothing is better than fitness."

The magazine's nonscientific survey of 50 cities listed Seattle as No. 2 in the most-fit rankings, followed by Colorado Springs; Minneapolis; Tucson, Ariz.; Denver; San Francisco; Baltimore; Portland, Ore.; and Honolulu.

It's Top 10 fattest cities are Las Vegas, Nev., up from No. 2 last year; San Antonio, Texas; Miami; Mesa, Ariz.; Los Angeles; Houston; Dallas; El Paso, Texas; Detroit; and San Jose, Calif.

"This is not a scientific list; this is a commonsense list," said Neal Boulton, editor of Men's Fitness. He said he puts out the fittest and fattest lists each year for one reason — "to motivate folks to look at simple things in their lives they can do to be healthy."

America is always going to be a fast-food nation where people have long commutes and busy lives, he said. But instead of a soft drink during the commute, they can choose water; instead of a fast-food snack, they can eat almonds, he said.

His survey examines lifestyle factors in each city: fast-food restaurants per capita, availability of gyms or bike paths, commute times, how much television watching Nielsen records, federal health statistics on obesity-related injuries and illnesses.

"I can draw attention to the way we're living," Boulton said.

And he wants the lists to be a call to arms for mayors and governors.

"There's a consciousness among mayors that they can motivate the population and go beyond the PR.," he said. "It's more than just having a mayor run the marathon. That doesn't motivate people. What motivates people is starting a Fit City program. ... It takes action."

Chavez points to the neighboring state of Colorado and its largest city, Denver, as doing a good job of marketing indoor and outdoor recreation.

Albuquerque is beginning to tout its recreation as well, particularly 10,678-foot Sandia Mountain on the city's eastern flank and the cottonwood forest, or bosque, that runs along the Rio Grande through the heart of the city.

"Our mountain is right here if you're a runner, a hiker, a mountain biker," Chavez said. "We have a marvelous bosque that runs through heart of city. ... I've always thought we had more assets than they do, but we haven't developed those assets. We're doing that now."

Albuquerque also is beginning to develop recreation-related jobs, so recognition as a fit city brings an economic advantage, he said.

"Less tangible, but no less meaningful, is the way people see us: 'We didn't know about that about Albuquerque.' ... Those things change the way people see us, make us more investment-worthy and friendly," Chavez said.

Albuquerque — where about 40 percent of the population is Hispanic — has plenty of Mexican restaurants, a cuisine not known for its low-fat content.

Chavez said the traditional American diet is high in fat, "not just Mexican food but every good food."

However, nearly every restaurant offers some heart-healthy menu items, and Chavez said fit Albuquerque residents choose those.

"All Mexican food is healthy," he joked. "That's my story and I'm sticking to it." ... ZPItGs0NUE

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Post by Ralph » Sat Feb 10, 2007 12:31 am

Nah, we're fitter in Gotham.

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."

Albert Einstein


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