Back of woman in workout outfit going down Santa Monica stairs
  • Back of woman in workout outfit going down Santa Monica stairs
  • Profile shot of a woman in workout clothes on a blurred outdoor background
  • Back shot of a woman running
  • Split photo of a woman working out in two different poses
  • Split photo with people climbing stairs, medium shot from behind on the left and closeup of feet on the right
  • Split photo of woman working out against a stone wall, leaning against the wall and holding a drink on the left, and stretching her leg on the right.
  • Woman drinking pressed juice against a fence

    One of the many things we love about living in L.A. is that there are plenty of opportunities to exercise – and most are built right into the landscape. Lifestyle blogger Lauren Gores Ireland is showing us how it’s done at one of  favorite outdoor workout spots in the city – the Santa Monica Stairs. Follow Lauren’s outline below to make the most of this fitness hotspot, step by step!

    If there’s one thing L.A.’s mastered – it’s non-traditional workouts. Among the best? The famed Santa Monica stairs.

    The steps serve as a welcome alternative to my typical fitness routine. If you’ve ever made the trek yourself, you know it’s a thigh burner. The (approximately) 170 steps leave you feeling sweaty and accomplished. The area is usually busy, regardless of the time of day. But if you throw on a good playlist and let your mind wander free, you’ll forget about the crowd.

    There’s also something innately encouraging about the workout. I think it’s the idea of accomplishing something one step at a time – never looking back – that inspires me every time. For those of you who love feeling both fit and mindful, here’s how to master the trek…

    Note: There are two sets of Santa Monica stairs – wooden and concrete. The following photos were snapped at the wooden set.


    Spend a few minutes stretching before making the hike up, specifically focusing on your legs. The steps are certainly a bum and thigh burner, so a good stretch goes a long way.

    STEP UP:

    Begin the walk up, choosing a pace that’s comfortable for you. You’ll notice some people prefer to trek slowly, while others are nearly running. There are a couple of resting areas as you make your way up.


    Once you reach the top, there’s a small lookout area where you can catch a view of the ocean (the view from the concrete steps is even more picturesque). Take a moment to hydrate and reflect.


    There’s a residential area where you can take a brief run (at the top or bottom). This will keep your heart rate up and make the workout more of a challenge.


    Take a few minutes to stretch again, before making the trek down. Your legs will thank you later!


    Begin the trek to the bottom, while controlling your pace.


    A number of people choose to take the stairs a handful of times before wrapping their workout. Each set will take you roughly 15 minutes, depending on your pace (excluding the run).

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