Health & Fitness

The Top U.S. Cities For Runners 2022

Susy WulfFebruary 24, 20225 mins read

Sometimes, the best running companion for you is the scenery around you as your put one foot in front the other.

Running is a popular sport in America. Some lands include cities with skyscrapers and suburban streets lined with trees and mountainous trails.

These are the criteria for great running cities

Puma Europe, an independent data collection partner, analyzed data from over 100 cities across the United States to determine the best places for runners.

  • air quality
  • water quality
  • Temperature
  • Traffic congestion
  • Elevation
  • Numerous running clubs

These are the top U.S. cities to run in 2022

To give an overall score, each factor was given a fair weighting. Puma’s analysis revealed the following:

  • Portland, Oregon is the top U.S. destination for runners
  • Colorado Springs is the second best city for runners.
  • Tulsa (Oklahoma) came in third

The top ten also include:

  • Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Denver, Colorado
  • Columbus, Ohio
  • Kansas City, Kansas
  • Baltimore, Maryland
  • Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Omaha, Nebraska

Jacksonville, Florida and Portland, Oregon were also well ahead of the rest when it comes to running clubs, with 587,849 versus 394,205, respectively.

Portland, Oregon is No. 1 for runners

Portland, Oregon ranked the highest of all variables Puma analysed. This is not surprising to Andrew Lemoncello who is an Olympian runner and assistant trainer for McMillan Running Company. He believes Portland, Oregon, is a healthy city with a vibrant community.

Lemoncello states, “It is not a coincidence that [it] is paired avec many running trails and access to the wilderness very near by, [Forest Park is in the middle of city is a hotbedfor running], as well as very good water from the Bull Run watershed.”

He says that although there is congestion in the city, it is not as severe as other major cities.

Lemoncello believes Portland is the perfect climate for quality running year round. It doesn’t get too hot nor too cold.

“There’s a strong running community in the area. They set up races and run all over town. There’s also a lot more running club crossover where runners can meet outside their clubs. He says that the clubs organize events that bring many runners together.

Portland, Oregon is a popular destination for elite runners.

Lemoncello says, “It’s easy for elite runners to bump into, as well as 200 additional runners, on weekend runs at Forest park… It is a social community, so it’s simple to meet up, run, and then have a beer afterwards.”

It is possible to run anywhere.

Christina Brown, weight loss coach, says that running can have many health benefits, regardless of where you live. “Runnin’ is good for your heart, cardiovascular health, strength, flexibility, stress relief, improved heart health, and maintaining a moderate weight.

Brown says that running is a great sport because of all the benefits. Even if it’s rainy or cold outside, running on a treadmill can still provide the same benefits as outdoor running.

Lemoncello runs for the mental health benefits.

It’s a great way for you to clear your head and think through problems. Running is great for your mental health. This benefit is not often mentioned. He says that even a quick run can make a difference in your day.

Running can be fun!

Even if your area is runner-friendly, running can become repetitive and boring. Here are some ways to make running more fun.

Listen to audiobooks or podcasts

Brown advises clients to limit their listening to audiobooks or podcasts while exercising.

She says, “That way, as long the podcast/audiobook interests them and they want to continue listening, then they’ll lace up their running sneakers in order to do so.”

Change the location you run in

Brown recommends finding a different route after you have completed your current run route.

She says that monotony can be caused by running the same route over and over again.

Another option is to drive to a place that has beautiful scenery or a path to run around.

Establish a goal

A goal such as running a 5K, 10K or marathon can be a motivator.

Brown says that this can make running more fun because it gives you the motivation to do well in the race.

Lemoncello recommends volunteering for a race that you are interested in running.

He says, “[That] helps people to quickly lose that fear and sign-up for a race because there are runners of all shapes and sizes, speeds and ages competing and having fun.”

Find a running buddy

Make plans to meet up with a friend who enjoys running to keep you accountable. If you don’t know anyone who is interested in running, join a running club to find others with the same interests.

Lemoncello says, “I believe that it can be very helpful to surround yourself with like-minded runners as you work together towards your goals every day.” “[You] can easily find training partners, regardless of whether you are an elite or newbie.”

Cross-training is also possible

You can add other types of exercise to break up the monotony associated with running.

Brown suggests that you do this to avoid injury and improve your running performance. Brown suggests including strength training and yoga into your running routine.

Strength training will help you run faster, reduce the risk of injury and improve your endurance,” she said. Yoga helps to keep your joints and muscles loose. It also helps you relax and slow down your breathing while running intensely. It can improve your mental strength and balance.

Susy Wulf
author

Susy Wulf is a journalist, copywriter, editor and journalist. She has a BA degree in English from Monmouth University, and a MA in Global Communications (American University of Paris).

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