Fitness lover and triathlete Katie Godec swims, bike, runs, and eats healthy food all around Los Angeles County, which she captures on her Instagram account, @trilife_at_30kft, and the Trilife Fitness website. “Los Angeles has every type of person, culture, business, and especially food,” she says. “We are also fortunate to have an ever-growing and ever-appreciative population of people who believe in a health and wellness lifestyle. That means you can go pretty much anywhere in the city and find good food, workout classes, and outdoor events.” Below, Godec shares recommendations for any wellness-focused travelers visiting Los Angeles.
Where in Los Angeles do you live? Why there?
“I live in Venice Beach. I have lived on the westside of L.A. for almost eight years now because I deeply love the ocean. I am a mile away from the water at any time and a 10-minute drive to some of the most beautiful trail runs in all of SoCal.”
What is your favorite bike route?
“A beautiful and hard climb called Latigo Canyon, nestled in the Santa Monica Mountains. It is pretty famous for celebrity home sightings and motorcycles that attempt a fast and winding climb up and down the mountain. I am also a huge fan of biking the Pacific Coast Highway from Zuma Beach heading north. You can't beat that ocean view.”
What’s a must-do L.A. route you would suggest to beginner cyclists?
“If you are looking for an flat, easy, and beautiful ride, take the Strand bike path [aka Marvin Braude Bike Trail] starting from the northern-most tip at Will Rogers Beach, and head south as far as Torrance. (You can turn around anywhere in between. The Santa Monica Pier and the Manhattan Beach Pier are picturesque places for a photo and a water break). If you are using a bike with gears and want a little climbing, try riding up Mandeville Canyon Road in the Pacific Palisades. A steady grade averaging around 3 percent for five miles, with a little extra push required just in the last half mile. The homes you will see on this route are awesome.”
What’s your favorite post-workout coffee shop?
“I almost can't choose just one. If I am in Venice, I frequent Menottis, Rose Cafe, and Groundwork Coffee on Rose Ave. All have unique quirks. Groundwork serves my favorite breakfast tacos, Rose Cafe has a full bar and restaurant attached in a really gorgeous and spacious building, and Menottis is the true coffee heartbeat of the Venice Beach boardwalk area.”
Do you have any healthy brunch recommendations?
“If you are on the Westside near the ocean, check out Great White. They have everything from earthy bowls with protein to activated charcoal drinks. I also highly recommend Republique on La Brea. There is a long line on weekends, but it is worth it. Their pastries are out of this world.”
Are there local group classes that you’d recommend?
“I have been going to Deuce Gym in Venice for years. They offer CrossFit, strength training, gymnastics, and coached training classes. It is one of the only outdoor gyms I have ever seen, and it is a community of really wonderful, understanding, and educated fitness-fanatics. They have a sign posted up that says, ‘You Don't Need To Workout To Kick It.’ Enough said. Go take a class there and tell them Katie sent you.”
Ocean swimming can be intimidating for a lot of people—where would you recommend swimming in L.A.?
“If you are brand new to open water swimming and don't have experience entering/exiting the water through the waves, try swimming at Bayshore in Long Beach. It is a protected open water area with zero waves. If you want a little more adventure and preparation for any type of open water race, go to Tower 26 in Santa Monica (where Ocean Park Boulevard dead-ends with the ocean). You will certainly see other open water swimmers there in the morning. It is a well-loved spot and frequented year-round.”
Where can you find the best views while running or hiking?
“I deeply love the top of the Temescal Canyon trail. It has a panoramic view of the ocean and well worth a visit at sunset. And as touristy as it might be, the hike up to the Hollywood sign is pretty darn cool too.”
Do you have any favorite local races that you’d recommend traveling for?
“The Los Angeles area is home to some exceptional trail races. If you have ever wanted to do an ultramarathon, check out the Leona Divide 50K on the Pacific Crest Trail. We also have the Nautica Malibu Triathlon in September, the Día De Los Muertos 5K in Downtown Los Angeles on Olvera Street for some Halloween-inspired running fun. Or try any of the CicLAvia events, run by a nonprofit that puts on bike events where the public can come ride on the open roads and enjoy music, food, and festivities.”