These Are the Best (and Worst) Cities for Keeping Your New Year’s Resolutions

A new analysis looked at 150 cities.

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Photo by Leonardo Patrizi/Getty Images

It’s not easy to achieve six-pack abs when you’re surrounded by a nightlife culture of growlers and kegs. If you’ve failed in keeping your resolutions the past few years—what might help you to succeed this year is a change in environment. For those looking to move for a fresh start in the new year, WalletHub, a personal finance website, analyzed data from 150 cities to find out which places in America offered the best environment for changing lifestyle factors.

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The winner? Salt Lake City, Utah, offers a well-rounded environment for those looking to better themselves in the year. The overall rank for cities was based on factors like adult obesity, median annual income, unemployment rate, smoking and binge drinking rate, and nightlife establishments and restaurants per capita. Each metric was weighted to come up with a point score, and cities were then assigned a score out of 100. Salt Lake City received a total score of 68.79—ranking high overall on weight and fitness resolutions factors (third out of 150 cities), as well as bad-habit resolutions (sixth). And though it took the top overall spot, don’t move there if you’re looking to improve your financial outlook—it ranked 39 for financial resolutions and 19 for educational/employment resolutions. But if you’re looking to quit smoking, it might make a good choice: the city also had the second lowest percentage of adult smokers.

Western cities consistently ranked high in the five categories, taking eight of the top 10 spots. Though it ranked fifth overall, Plano, Texas, was the best city for those looking to improve both their financial and education/employment opportunities. It also ranked high in median annual income (second), as well as the highest public school system (tied for fourth with Seattle, Washington, and Fremont, California)

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For the top 10 cities for keeping your New Year’s resolutions, see below. You can find all 150 cities, ranked, at WalletHub.com.

  1. Salt Lake City, Utah
  2. San Francisco, California
  3. Scottsdale, Arizona
  4. Seattle, Washington
  5. Plano, Texas
  6. Overland Park, Kansas
  7. Atlanta, Georgia
  8. Irvine, California
  9. Austin, Texas
  10. San Jose, California