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Sunday, July 21, 2024

Top 20 Fittest Mayors in America 2020

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Samir Becic and his HFR team continue to provide a valuable annual resource in ranking the health and fitness of U.S. politicians (mayors, senators, congress peoplegovernors). Over the years, countless national media sources have utilized these lists to highlight this information. Every year, the lists are updated, which allows us to share new and creative ways in which politicians continue to be good leaders by demonstrating healthy lifestyles for themselves, in addition to promoting healthy lifestyles within their communities.

HFR founder and author of ReSYNC Your LifeSamir Becic intends to use this list to motivate all the mayors in America to be more active and fit in order to be the best ambassadors for their cities. “Every politician in the United States who is physically fit and promotes a healthy lifestyle in order to improve the future of our nation has my vote, regardless of party,” Becic says. “Mayors, I believe that you have a tremendous impact and influence on your cities, so please use your platforms to improve the healthy lifestyle of your citizens!”

Here is this year’s list of the Top 20 Fittest Mayors in America 2020, by alphabetical order.

We went through all the mayors of cities with a population of over 200,000 residents – see which 20 city leaders made this exclusive list this time around:

Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird – Lincoln, Nebraska

  • Leirion Gaylor Baird is an American politician and has been the Mayor of Lincoln, Nebraska since 2019. She previously served as a city councilwoman.
  • When the Coronavirus pandemic started, Baird held a press conference to offer tips on alternative fitness activities. These included the following tips:
    • Socially distanced park activities
    • Keep a daily routine
    • Thirty minutes outside each day
    • Stay hydrated
    • “Finding ways to center yourself through yoga, meditation, prayer, painting, reading or taking a bath can help bring a calm following or before a day’s turbulence,” Gaylor Baird said.
    • Many more health tips from the conference here.
  • Last August, Baird hosted a hearing to explore the cost savings and best practices of good nutrition featuring health care executives and research scientists.

Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms – Atlanta, Georgia

  • Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms is the admirable Mayor of Atlanta, Georgia and was named the 2020 Georgian of the Year.
  • She participated in the AJC Peachtree Road Race, a 10k race in 2018. She finished in 1:15:58, despite her knee injury at the time.
  • In 2019, she hosted her first 5k race on the runway at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. She was outspoken on how proudly she ran alongside her son!
  • Mayor Bottoms also began to host #fitnessfriday sessions at City Hall in 2019.

Mayor Kirk Caldwell – Honolulu, Hawaii

  • Mayor Kirk Caldwell is the 14th Mayor of Honolulu, Hawaii and has been for the past 8 years.
  • Caldwell is incredibly passionate about the environment, and has recently launched a “Farm to Food” program to help distribute fresh meats and locally grown produce to the people of O’ahu.
  • Another one of Caldwell’s passions is getting people to be active. He hopes to encourage this by increasing the amount of bike lanes that are available around the city.
  • Mayor Caldwell is also very active. He engages in the following activities:
    • Paddleboards regularly, and compares the lessons he’s learned from the sport: remain flexible and open to possibilities.
    • Runs at least 2 to 3 times a week during lunch.
      • Said that being active during lunch promotes his creativity, and he usually comes back from his runs full of fresh ideas.
    • Does sit-ups, pushups and leg extensions.
  • Caldwell is looking to extend “stay at home” orders, however with modification.
    • He wants to open up city parks for exercise only

Mayor Lenny Curry – Jacksonville, Florida

  • Mayor Lenny Curry is the current Mayor of Jacksonville, Florida and has been for the past 5 years.
  • Started the “mayorathon”, where Curry encourages everyone to walk or run 26.2 miles in a month.
  • The multipronged initiative aims to address health disparities in ways like the Farm to Faith initiative, which brings fresh produce to churches in some of Jacksonville’s most isolated areas. This includes Health Zone 1- an area predominantly in Northwest Jacksonville that has been a “food desert” — an area where it’s not easy for residents to buy fresh produce.
  • Also supports the Mission One Million is a campaign by the Mayor’s Council on Fitness and Well-being and the Duval County Medical Society Foundation that aims to have area residents shed 1 million pounds.
  • Curry is also an active individual himself. He is an avid boxer, and often posts his latest boxing session to social media.

Mayor Jenny Durkan – Seattle, Washington

  • Mayor Jenny Durkan has been the Mayor of Seattle, Washington for the past 3 years. Prior to becoming mayor, Durkan was appointed as the United States Attorney General by President Barack Obama.
  • After graduating from the University of Notre Dame, she taught school and coached girls basketball in a Yupik fishing village in Alaska.
  • Durkan has always been an advocate for fitness and encouraging the youth to stay active.
    • Along side WNBA star Sue Bird, she gave an interview inspiring the youth of America to never stop reaching for their dreams and the importance of physical fitness.
  • Expanded Seattle Human Services Department (HSD) investment to more than $7 million in assistance to local programs that support food access and nutrition for older adults and people experiencing homelessness.

Mayor Jacob Frey – Minneapolis, Minnesota

  • Mayor Jacob Frey is a first-time Mayor of Minneapolis, Minnesota, and has been serving for the past 2 years.
  • Frey is a well-known marathon-running politician.
  • Frey is known to possibly be the “fastest” politician in the world as he ran a 2:16:44 marathon.
    • He also finished fourth at the Pan American Games
    • Won the 2008 Austin Marathon
    • Represented the U.S in the Olympic Trials.
  • During his peak time of training, he would run up to 150 miles a week
  • His favorite form of exercise is running.
    • He was recruited to college with a track scholarship, spending time as a professional runner.
  • He fell in love with the city of Minneapolis after running two city marathons there.

Mayor Steven Fulop – Jersey City, New Jersey

  • Steven Fulop is the Mayor of Jersey City, New Jersey.
  • Has completed two and a half Ironmans, one of which was finished in under 12 hours!
    • Has said that the Ironman was probably the hardest single task he was a part of because it really requires not only physical endurance but mental endurance.
  • Ran in the 2012 NYC Marathon.
  • Believes that being healthy and active can teach extreme discipline which is needed in order to be successful. 
  • Created an Adult Fitness Class to help encourage the adults of Jersey City to become fit and then pass the mentality onto their children.
  • Read our exclusive interview with Mayor Steven Fulop here.

Mayor John Giles – Mesa, Arizona

  • Mayor John Giles is the Mayor of Mesa, Arizona and is currently up for re-election this year.
  • Giles is an active cyclist and runner!
    • He has completed two full Ironmans
    • Participated in 20 marathons – four of which were the Boston Marathon.
  • Giles loves to participate in Zumba classes for fun. Watch here to see him turn it up on the Zumba floor!
  • Giles recently completed a half marathon with the Mesa Police Department in February.

Mayor Michael B. Hancock – Denver, Colorado

  • Mayor Michael B. Hancock is the current Mayor of Denver, Colorado.
    • Fun fact: Hancock was born in Fort Hood, Texas!
  • Mayor Hancock is an avid cyclist.
    • He commits to leading the Colorado Classic Mayor’s Ride annually.
    • He cycled through a rally to raise awareness of the importance of funding transportation. 
    • Hancock was joined by hundreds of bicycle enthusiast as he led the second annual Orange Ride through downtown Denver to Sports Authority Field at Mile High.

Mayor Joe Hogsett – Indianapolis, Indiana

  • Mayor Joe Hogsett is the current Mayor of Indianapolis, Indiana and has been for the past 4 years.
    • Prior to becoming mayor, Hogsett served as the Indiana’s Secretary of State and also as a U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana.
  • Supports community fitness and gave a trophy to a company that is committed to cycling.
  • Shaved head to raise money for childhood cancer.
  • Physically helped fill potholes in his city in 2018 by using a shovel and cement.
  • Hogsett also loves to canoe.

Mayor Tim Keller – Albuquerque, New Mexico

  • Mayor Timothy ‘Tim’ M. Keller is the Mayor of Albuquerque, New Mexico and has been for the past 2 years. Before becoming mayor, Keller was a Democratic member of the New Mexico State Senate.
  • He keeps an extra set of running shoes and workout clothes in the trunk of his car, and no matter where he is in the city, if he has 30 minutes, he’ll go and run. It could be around a track, around a golf course, in an open field- he just fits it in!
  • Prefers running in deep sand in the desert- it’s good for the ankles and knees.
  • Formally, he runs/sprints about twice a week for about an hour.
  • He still plays football with the best of them and credits his athlete mentality to helping him in his successful career. 
  • Keller has recently broken ground on a Sports and Fitness Center for people aged 50 and older.
    • Wanted to create an inclusive space for the aging population of Albuquerque to work out in peace.
  • Read our exclusive interview with Mayor Tim Keller here.

Mayor Sam Liccardo – San Jose, California

  • Mayor Sam Liccardo is the Mayor of San Jose, California and has been for the past 5 years.
  • He wakes up at 5:30 in the morning to read and sharpen his mind for the rest of the day, while also boosting his creativity.
  • An avid hiker, he uses the trails along the stunning Guadalupe River to quietly contemplate and immerse himself in the natural beauty that San Jose provides.
  • Liccardo finds that walking and hiking is a great time for him and his wife to catch up, and hiking helps him to brainstorm about ideas he wants to implement at work.
  • Due to the pandemic, Liccardo has started the “Stay Silicon Valley Strong” initiative and has been posting 30 minute workout videos every Monday morning at 8:30 AM to his Facebook account!
  • Click here for our exclusive interview with Mayor Sam Liccardo.

Mayor Ron Nirenberg – San Antonio, Texas

  • Mayor Ron Nirenberg has served as the Mayor of San Antonio, Texas for the past 3 years and as mayor, Nirenberg has stated that his main priority is “restoring public trust so that all residents are confident that their representatives are working in their best interests.”
  • Prior to politics, he pursued careers as a fitness and nutrition consultant, as well as a competitive bodybuilder for seven years.
  • He is a firm believer in mind, body, spirit, and balance.
    • Uses his high-intensity fitness regime to balance himself out and to keep sane and happy.
  • Credits athletics, especially being in individual sports with very little instant gratification that requires a long-term outlook and self-discipline.
    • Did some graduate work in bodybuilding.
  • He emphasizes the importance of a balance between the mental and physical, which exercise allows him to have.
    • Describes that getting his “adrenaline flowing and endorphins pumping” makes him feel his best.
  • Started a “Get Strong” fitness campaign which was intended to show all the different ways that people can have fun and get fit and adapt to the lifestyle that best suits them.
    • During COVID-19, this campaign provided the public with creative ways they can stay fit utilizing San Antonio outdoor spaces, as well as several resources they can utilize to tackle the mental and physical implications of COVID-19. 
  • Recently joined by San Antonio Spurs player, Lonnie Walker IV, Mayor Nirenberg discussed how to remain physically fit during the pandemic and while in quarantine.
  • Read our exclusive interview with Mayor Ron Nirenberg here.

Mayor Dan Pope – Lubbock, Texas

  • Mayor Dan Pope is the current Mayor of Lubbock, Texas and has been for the past 4 years. Pope is up for re-election this year and is on the ballot for the general election on November 3rd.
  • Pope’s routine goes a little something like this, in terms of working out:
    • Most mornings he goes to the gym at 5:30am for an hour.
    • On the weekends, he opts for a jog or sleeping in.
  • Pope says that at 55, being active is just as good for him mentally as it is physically, because it allows him to clear his head and to be prepared for the day.
    • Uses exercises for stress reduction.
  • Created the Lubbock Marathon.
  • Also created the Mayor’s Fitness Council in collaboration with Texas Tech University’s Healthy Sciences Center in order to promote a healthy lifestyle filled with healthy eating tips and ways to exercise.
    • Pope will be hosting a hike on Saturday October 17th and every citizen of Lubbock is welcome to attend.
  • Read our exclusive interview with Mayor Dan Pope here.

Mayor Betsy Price – Fort Worth, Texas

  • Mayor Betsy Price is the current Mayor of Forth Worth, Texas and has been for the past 9 years. She is the only Mayor of Fort Worth to have ever served for more than 4 terms, as she is in her 5th term as Mayor.
  • Price spends her time out of office entirely on the move, whether it be swimming, weight lifting, or training for her triathlons, Price is determined to stay active
  • She began the FitWorth program to promote active lifestyles in her community. On top of this, Price rides all of the 21 days of cycling events included in the program. 
  • Price hosts weekly 8 mile rides with the people in her residential area and is known to typically ride 100 miles weekly during the summer! 
    • You can also find Betsy Price riding to City Hall meetings!
  • She has created, and completed many triathlons and cycling races and places second in her age group during the Fort Worth Triathlon in 2015.

Mayor Hillary Schieve – Reno, Nevada

  • Mayor Hillary Schieve is the current Mayor of Reno, Nevada and has been for the past 5 years.
  • Was an Olympic-level figure skater.
  • Stayed in shape and won a gold and silver medal at adult national ice skating.
  • Is a big advocate for organ donation.
    • Had to quit her professional ice skating career after getting a kidney transplant from her sister, but kept her athlete mentality and work ethic.
  • Believes that a healthy city is a city that provides longevity and a great quality of life so being healthy and staying active is very important.
  • Supportive of parks and recreation for the people of Reno.
  • Motivated to help people cope with the stress and mental health challenges associated with COVID-19.
    • Member of the Nevada Recovery Advocacy Project, a project developed in response to COVID-19 which provides support to those struggling with mental health challenges.
  • Read our exclusive interview with Mayor Hillary Schieve here.

Mayor Darrell Steinberg -Sacramento, California

  • Mayor Darrell Steinburg is the Mayor of Sacramento, California, and has been for the past 4 years. Mayor Steinburg just recently ran for re-election and won on March 3rd, 2020.
  • On a typical morning, Steinberg is out playing tennis at 6:30 a.m. If not tennis, he will be working out on his elliptical and lifting weights from home.
  • He is a huge tennis advocate and normally plays tennis at Garcia Bend Park.
    • However, he participated in the Grant HS tournament to benefit the Center for Father and Families.
  • According to Steinberg, “I’d much rather get exercise than sleep if I had to choose.”

Mayor Francis Suarez – Miami, Florida

  • Mayor Francis Suarez is the current Mayor of Miami, Florida and has been for the past 2 years. The Mayor title is a family honor seeing as Suarez’s father, Xavier Suarez, also served as Mayor of Miami in 1985-1993 and then again in 1997-1998.
  • Suarez is a health and fitness advocate who took part in CrossFit Competitions and this time last year ran a 5k with a personal best! 
  • In 2019 Suarez was mentioned and shared how he lives a healthy and fitness-based life.
    • Suarez shares that he has a protein shake with creatine and unsaturated fats once or twice a day.
    • He also shares that his favorite workouts are CrossFit-based because “it has a little bit of everything. It has gymnastics, it has Olympic lifting, and it has cardiovascular”.
  • Early on this year, Suarez teamed up with DeliverLean for The Miami Moves Healthiest City Campaign.
    • This collaborative campaign will help provide health and wellness for everyone and will focus on delivering health education and healthy meals to low-income and underserved citizens. 
  • Suarez was also the first convalescent plasma donor in the state of Florida after recovering COVID-19. He continues to donate to help others battling the virus. 

Mayor Sylvester Turner – Houston, Texas

  • Mayor Sylvester Turner has been the Mayor of Houston, Texas for the past 4 years.
  • Turner participated in the 75 mile Tour de Houston bike ride.
    • Houston has about 220 bike lanes right now. He wants to expand that number to 800 and eventually to 1500.
  • His administration is partnering with local businesses and communities to implement a farmer’s market program, taking farmer’s markets to different areas throughout Houston.
    • Urban farmer’s markets, such as the 5th Ward’s Last Organic Outpost, provide fresh produce for affordable prices and form a deep connection with the local community.
  • During his campaign, he accepted Samir Becic’s challenge to join #PushUpsEverywhere without any hesitation. Dropping to the floor and delivering 10 high quality pushups for the whole world to see.
  • Mayor Turner has recently created a “Better. Together” multilingual health initiative to help teach the people in Houston, that don’t speak English, about ways to stay safe from the virus.
    • Educated people in their homes, schools, parks, businesses, houses of worship, restaurants and other places in order to reduce positive COVID-19 cases.
    • Turner has stated that he wishes for the Coronavirus rates to go from 23% to 5% in Houston with this program.
  • Created a partnership with Prairie View A&M University to reduce health disparities in Houston’s underserved and under-resourced communities.
    • The goal of this partnership is to improve the communities’ health, nutrition and wellness.
    • Expanding awareness of healthy living programs, health services, and educating residents on how to live a healthy lifestyle.

Mayor Ted Wheeler – Portland, Oregon

  • Mayor Ted Wheeler is the current Mayor of Portland, Oregon and has been for the past 3 years. He is up for re-election this year and will be on the general election ballots on November 3rd.
  • He starts his day at 4:45 am to train for Ironman races and pushes his body to its limits by swimming, biking, running, and fueling his body with the right nutrition.
  • Has hiked Mount Everest several times.
  • Wheeler has run several Ironmans including Hawaii as well as run several marathons.
  • Click here for our exclusive interview with Mayor Ted Wheeler!
Originally published on samirbecic.com
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