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  • Bill Chastain

Biking Bliss, Fittest City, and Top 60

According to several sources, Minneapolis and Portland go back and forth for the top spot as the best biking city in the United States.

Minihaha The waterfall at Minnehaha Park

I haven’t been to Portland, but I can report on the experience of biking in Minneapolis. For those traveling without a bike, there are plenty of rental bike locations, awesome trails, and all in 55 degree weather.

One ride took me to Minnehaha Park, where I witnessed a splendid waterfall. Others have taken me along paths with views of the Mississippi River. Not a bad way to get in your exercise for the day, huh?

Local politicians promoted safe bicycle lanes to where those riding are taken seriously and aren’t an annoyance. From personal experience, I can tell you those driving cars in Minneapolis are more agreeable toward those riding bikes than some I’ve encountered in Tampa.

I’m still stewing about the woman who sped toward me — in my lane — while talking on the phone. A quick turn saved me from becoming a cartoon pancake. I doubt the woman would have noticed anything was amiss until she took her SUV to the car wash and they found chunks of me tangled in the bumper. I’m sure she would have stopped talking long enough to motion for the full detail package.

And…

While we’re talking about fitness — sort of — I just read that Washington, D.C. is ranked as the fittest city in the United States according to the eighth annual American Fitness Index from the American College of Sports Medicine and the Anthem Foundation.

Criteria for the rankings were strength of schedule…

No, make that rates of smoking, diabetes, and obesity in addition to the variety of outdoor activities available in the city.

Portland came in at No. 7 with Minneapolis at No. 2. I did not see a list of the least fit cities.

Finally…