San Francisco Ranked Best Running City
By Erin Mara
San Francisco was just named Runner’s World No. 1 Running City in the U.S. – and though extremely honored – we can’t say we’re surprised. Locals have long-known our city is a top running destination for access, beauty, weather, community and so much more. Ask anyone here – we feel lucky to call San Francisco home. Share in our bounty with The Biofreeze San Francisco Marathon on July 23, 2017.
San Francisco won the best running city designation for a handful of reasons, and The Biofreeze San Francisco Marathon showcases them all.
Run: #1 out of 150
The Biofreeze San Francisco Marathon is the city’s only marathon, and its largest race. The city placed in the top spot for the running index, consisting of how often people in the household ran last year (12,554 runs per week for a total of 64,037 miles in 2015, according to Strava); the number of city races (nearly 250 in 2016); the number of running clubs (16); and the number of running stores (9). Cities received bonus points for whether there was a marathon in 2015; a Girls on the Run council; and whether the city was designated an RRCA community.
Parks: #5 out of 150
Besides the Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco’s greatest treasure is arguably its parks. From lush, 1,000-acre Golden Park on the western edge of the city to bayfront Crissy Field with its endless views of the Golden Bridge and Alcatraz, to the towering eucalyptus-dotted Presidio – The Biofreeze San Francisco Marathon takes runners through them all. The parks index consisted of the percentage of city population with walkable park access and park units, recreation and fitness facilities, the city’s Walk Score, and whether the city is accessible without a car.
Climate: #6 out of 150
With its signature fog, cool climate year-round and an average temperature of about 60 degrees, San Francisco boasts its best running weather in the summer — perfect timing for the San Francisco marathon, which takes place July 23. The climate index consisted of daily precipitation; average daily maximum and minimum air temperatures; average daily maximum heat index; and the average daily density of particulate matter, a measure of air pollution.
Food: #19 out of 150
San Francisco is known world-wide for its culinary prowess, and the heart of its food culture sits in the San Francisco Ferry Building, an epicurean marketplace, with an impressive farmers market three days a week. The Biofreeze San Francisco Marathon starts almost directly in front the Ferry Building, and its Race Expo July 21 and 22 is just a few miles away. The food index consisted of two data sets: farmers markets per 1,000 people and an index of factors that contribute to a healthy food environment, including store/restaurant proximity and food prices.
Read more about America’s 50 Best Running Cities.
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