MapMyFitness Ranks Active States

California takes top spot, D.C. last

Jun 1, 2015
Outside Magazine
MapMyFitness Ranks Active States

California ranked as the most active state based on fitness tracker data.    Robert Gourley/Flickr

West Coasters are the kings of fitness, according to 2014 data from workout-tracking app MapMyFitness. Users plug into their phones or other connected devices and tell the app what kind of exercise they’re doing, and then MapMyFitness tracks the length of the workout and the user’s location. Under Armour, which owns the app, collated last year’s data from 22 million users to produce the state rankings.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the average time spent working out per week was 73.2 minutes (less than half of the 150 minutes a week the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends). Californians on average logged 87 exercise minutes per week, followed by Colorado, Washington, Oregon, and Arizona. When ordered by activity, Massachusetts had the most minutes spent running, California the most spent walking, and Colorado and Utah tied for the most minutes spent cycling. Activities like skiing, weightlifting, and yoga accounted for just 3 percent of minutes in any state.

The domination by Pacific states is largely due to ease of access. “Access to parks is tremendous,” John Bartholomew, director of the Exercise and Sport Psychology Laboratory at the University of Texas, told the Wall Street Journal. “If you think about Seattle or Oregon, the ability to get out into nature is something that attracts people.”

At the bottom of the list, Washington, D.C., came in 51st, with an average of 43.2 workout minutes per week, even though the American Fitness Index ranked it the fittest metropolitan area in the nation. Although that could be due to the fact that even though a runner, cyclist, or walker may live in one state, the location data assigns their exercise minutes to whatever state they’re in at the time of the workout. D.C. residents (and tourists out on runs) spent 62 percent of their workout minutes running, the highest proportion in the country.