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Duluth named 'least-stressed city' in the nation

The laker Philip R. Clarke glides through the Duluth ship canal and under the Aerial Lift Bridge in August 2015. Bob King /

Duluth News Tribune

Duluthians know how to chill out when it comes to stress, according to a new ranking.

Duluth was named the "least-stressed city in America" in an annual ranking announced Thursday by financial technology company SmartAsset. The city jumped to No. 1 after coming in as the third-least-stressed city in the ranking for the past two years.

To compile the ranking, the company analyzed 512 cities for stress factors, including average hours worked per week, commute time, physical activity, unemployment rate, bankruptcy rate, housing costs, hours of sleep and divorce rate.

The survey noted that Duluth has "relatively short work weeks" at an average of 35 hours. With an average of 7.2 hours of sleep per night, Duluth residents get close to the recommended amount of sleep. Duluth residents also have an average commute time of 16 minutes, and 61 percent of residents get the recommended amount of weekly exercise, according to the SmartAsset rankings.

Rounding out the top five least-stressed cities in the country are Madison, Wis., Iowa City, Iowa, Boulder, Colo., and Santa Fe, N.M. The study noted that New Jersey was one of the most-stressed states with two of the top five most-stressed cities.

It's just the latest recognition of the quality of life in Duluth in recent years. Earlier this year, the makers of Fitbit fitness monitors named Duluth the "fittest city" in the nation, ranking data such as daily steps, active minutes, resting heart rate and sleep duration from more than 10 million users of Fitbit trackers in 2016.

And that ranking came after Duluth's well-known "best outdoors town" accolades from Outside magazine in 2014.