January 21, 2018
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Maybe this is why more than a quarter of Mainers are obese

By Dan MacLeod, BDN Staff
Updated:
Gabor Degre | BDN
Gabor Degre | BDN
Maine is the fattest state in New England and is rising quickly nationally, according to a report released Thursday.

Maine ranks 45th in the nation in average weekly time people spent exercising here, according to this analysis of users of a fitness app called MapMyFitness.

To put that another way, even Mainers who are health-conscious enough to register with a fitness tracking website are not exercising as much as most of the rest of the country.

I’m posting this because it’s interesting, but you should still take this with a grain of salt (or maybe a protein shake if you just got done with a 10-mile run and only clicked on this out of incredulous rage.)

After all, this decidedly unscientific study from the app company only includes its users who actually bothered to track their fitness.

Plus, as the Wall Street Journal points out:

It is possible that app users aren’t logging every workout. But Americans who exercise are more likely to use a fitness app, says Todd Miller, associate professor of exercise and nutrition sciences at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University.

The study includes users of various apps under the MapMyFitness brand, including those dedicated to running, biking, hiking and walking. It found that the national average for weekly workouts logged was 73.2 minutes. Maine’s was 52.6, with running being the most popular activity.

That analysis comes as a recent Gallup report shows that Maine is the 14th least obese state. That sounds pretty good, but bear in mind that more than 25 percent of the state is obese. So we’re pretty healthy considering how unhealthy the U.S. is as a whole.

Hawaii had the lowest rate of obesity, according to that study. But guess what? It ranked 47th in the MapMyFitness data. Like I said: grain of salt.

(Interactive map by The Wall Street Journal)


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