Anderprom. Orientation Rope Course and "trust" falls. That first Anderson pool party. These are a few reasons to get fit while at school. Fortunately, LA provides a wealth of opportunities to shred that adipose tissue and firm up those abs. Below are some of my favorite things to do in the area!
UCLA John Wooden Center
This is the most logical, full service gym that most of us will use during school. Complete with weights, olympic platforms, every cardio machine you could imagine, and three spick'n'span full length basketball courts, this is the spot! Millions of hot pockets and In'N'Out burger calories have been burned in these hallowed halls. Before school starts you can get a summer pass for just $50 if you show your Bruincard. During school the admission fee is embedded in your tuition.
Need some endorphins to get you through finals? Located just off San Vicente and 4th Street in Brentwood are the Santa Monica Stairs. There are two sets of stairs (one with wooden steps and the other with concrete) separated by about 80-100 yards. You go, you run up and down and around, you sweat, and repeat if you dare. I bet an average person can do about 3-4 revolutions without stopping. Great for building the legs and burning fat. If you're feeling extra motivated there is a telephone pole with a steel bar that can function as a pull-up bar at the bottom near the concrete stairs . Knock out 5-10 pullups each round.
Santa Monica Mountains for Cycling
It is a little known fact that many pro cyclists come to Los Angeles during the offseason to train in these mountains because of the difficult terrain and pleasant climate. If you're into cycling, you've found your Shangri-La. From Santa Monica Beach to past Malibu, the Santa Monica mountain range is peppered with canyons that are ideal for climbing and burning obscene amounts of calories. One 3-hour ride for about 40 miles will burn about 3200 calories. That's alot! Here are my favorite routes:
For you bodybuilders out there Muscle Beach is sacred ground. This is the same place where Arnold Schwarzenegger aka The Governator used to train for Mr. Universe competitions. Located just north of Venice Blvd. on Ocean Front Walk Muscle Beach is not only a landmark, but a great place to train. There is a sand pen that has pullup bars and ropes for climbing as well as an area designated for weight lifting. Check it out!
For you swimmers out there, here's an idea for a free swimming pool: the Pacific Ocean! Tons of people train in the ocean for triathlons and the like. UCLA also has six different pools with recreational hours that make it easy to get a good swim. Check out this link for more info.
I hope this helps you arrive to the area with some good ideas for where/how to get fit! Until next time...