You know all the endless Facebook status updates from friends and family about their workouts, weight loss efforts, or fitness accomplishments? (“I just finished my first 5K/marathon/mountain climb!” You get the picture.)
Well now Facebook has used that information to determine the fittest cities in America.
And Virginia Beach, Va. came in at No. 1, which probably isn’t due to idle boasting by couch potatoes, but people who do actually work out–the city has been on more than one list of the healthiest cities.
So what qualifies as fit? Facebook considered you fit if you used Facebook to check in at the gym; used a fitness app to post information about your latest run, weight loss, or workout; or if you mentioned hiking, kayaking, running, or any other sport activity in a status update. (They didn’t take into consideration other non-Facebook-related health factors, such as obesity and diabetes rates, percent of cigarette smokers in a city, or eating habits.)
Facebook tracked posts for 3 months and only in cities that had at least 200,000 Facebook users. They also tracked the top cities for dancing (Oakland, Calif.), adventure-seeking (Chicago), and weight loss (Livingston, N.J.). The latter two were determined by the number of people who talked about trying a new sport or about their weight loss success, respectively.
Three of the top 10 cities are located in Texas. Austin was in 3rd place, followed by San Antonio, and El Paso came in at number 7. But strangely enough, El Paso was named the third fattest city in the country by Men’s Health in 2012.
Could they be turning it around?
Find out more on how to get fit with Facebook here.