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Cleveland named a fit city

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Cleveland one of the nations fittest cities Cleveland one of the nations fittest cities
CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -

Clevelanders, we're one of the country's fittest cities, ranking 19th among the 50 largest metropolitan areas.  And it's not our diet that landed us so high on the list. It's more about investment in fitness and health facilities. 

Cleveland is ranked high on the American College of Sports Medicine's list after a sort-of civic wellness exam.

Our easy access to health care boosted our status, as did community indicators like abundant recreation facilities and park-related spending.

The new $11m Collinwood Recreation Center is the crown jewel of the city's collection, which are all free to use, even for non-residents.

"People need to be healthier.  Juvenile diabetes is a large issue in the city of Cleveland.  We try to reach out to our patrons and say, 'Come on out, let's get healthy," said Cleveland's Director of Public Works, Michael Cox.

He says they have healthy enrollment in all their programs and classes.

"We have a walking club that has more than 250 members," he said.

Personal trainer Kevin Smyth sees evidence of a fitter city, in growing participation in things like the Cleveland Marathon.

"Some of the organized events like 5ks, and 10ks, just in general, there's tons of those throughout the city, especially in the summertime, that seem to get more and more people every year," he said.

And interest in training sessions is increasing.

"More and more people are coming in and wanted to learn about ways to get fit and wanting to have help getting fit," Smyth said.

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