Living Healthy in “Unhealthy” Louisville

Real Estate Agent

baby, active baby, fitness, derbyAs you may know, I had a baby in April.  My little Memphis has quickly learned to keep up with me, though as every mother of a newborn knows, there are times when I know to follow her lead.  She has even accompanied me on a few showings.  If "cute" can seal the deal, I will be a billion dollar agent in no time.

Like every new mom, I am concerned with getting back into shape.  In Louisville, that' s easy.  With 124 parks in Greater Louisville, plus plenty of personal trainer, bootcamps, health clubs, and home fitness options galore, it's just a matter of choosing an option I know I can stick with.  Motivation, along with its sidekick perseverance, is the name of the game, but I have lot of option.

That's why I was surprised to read that Louisville is nearly at the bottom of the list of cities where the population is fit.  The newly-released American Fitness Index ranks Louisville at  #49, better only than Oklahoma City.  Our neighbor across the river, Cincinnati, came up at #14.  Last year, we were #46.

Factors contributing to a city's rank include the percentage of parkland, obesity rates, activity rates, and the availability of farmer's markets nearby.  Though we have a high average of parkland, we have at least 70% of our counties falling in the highest quartile of physical inactivity  - which increases risk for developing chronic health conditions like type 2 diabetes and obesity.  As a whole, our state has high rates for diabetes cancer, and cardiovascular disease.

Though Louisville may rank low as a fitness town, it's not for lack of trying to encourage citizens to keep fit.  The city is on course to become a gold-level bicycle friendly community by 2015 and each year increases the number of bikes paths in the city.  Many citizens recently participated in National Bike to Work Day on May 20.  If you missed that day, the city is promoting a Subway sponsored a Hike, Bike, & Paddle event on Memorial Day that will include canoeing, kayaking, biking, and hiking contests, demonstrations, and training events, followed by entertainment.

At 10 popular locations around Louisville, the city has set up ground markers and pole signs designating every 1/10th of a mile so walkers know when they have completed the "Mayor's Mile."  The Mayor's office will consider setting up additional markers at worksites and neighborhoods, and will consider requests for future markers based on area safety, accessibility, pedestrian amenities, and the condition of the payment.

Part of health living involves food, so Louisville actively promotes farmer's markets throughout the city. About two dozen locations are listed on the city's website, as well as "fresh stops" in the Old Louisville, Newburg, or Russell neighborhoods, which offer residents a box of seasonal produce for $12.  Interested in this tasty local program?  (Call Karyn Moskowitz at 502-475-8979 for more information about New Roots, the non-profit  group that coordinates the program.)  Want to eat out but want to eat fresh?  Many restaurants in the city have pledged to be Healthy Hometown restaurants and label their menus with nutritional information.

Despite the many convenient options in our city to eat well and get plenty of exercise, Louisville is still the city of Colonel Sander and his legacy of fried chicken.  It is tempting to make more visits to the Colonel or the other exciting food options in Louisville than the gym or the farmer's market and watch more sports at the Yum! Center than we do play them.

With the right mindset, it is possible to live healthy in Louisville.   My team and I at Younger Group Real Estate can show you affordable homes within your budget in Butchertown, St. Matthews, The Highlands, and other great Louisville neighborhoods near the Derby. We know Louisville!

Comments (3)

Cathy Criado
Criado Realty - San Antonio, TX
Making Real Estate Profitable

Mollie - great post.  Keep in mind living healthy also includes indoor air quality and good ventillation. Coming from a fat city, San Antonio, I am inspired to do a Diabetes event here.  Biggie Size that!

May 23, 2011 11:37 AM
Diane McDermott
Realtor®, GRI, Landis e2 Real Estate, LLC - Charlotte, NC
Charlotte NC Real Estate Market

Mollie, sounds like there's plenty of options to make healthy living choices in your area.  I'm guilty of pushing off workouts myself but every day is a new chance to make different choices :)

May 23, 2011 12:48 PM
Mollie Younger
Louisville, KY
Younger Group Real Estate

Thanks for your comments. It ;s always easier to avoid the healthy opinions but in Louisville, as elsewhere, there are great options available to make other choices.

May 29, 2011 06:28 AM