I fly into San Diego on a 747 Jumbo Jet, which is by far the biggest aircraft that comes into this tiny airport. The locals all know when it’s coming in, mostly because of the roar of its four engines and also because it barely misses one of the public car parks as it makes its entry onto the just-about-long-enough runway, with enough time to stop. Let’s just say it makes for an interesting view if you are lucky enough to sit in a window seat, or even better, the flight deck for landing.
San Diego has to be (so far) my most favourite city in the states to visit. I have tactically learned to deal with the jet lag here, knowing I will always wake up early with the eight hour time difference, I always have a plan to go to the earliest yoga class I can find. Yoga One in downtown have a 6.30 sunrise classes most days which is perfect for this. I have been several times over the period of a year, the teachers are always so friendly and amazingly, remember me each time.
When seeking a more intense workout I will always plan a visit to the Conference Centre stairs along the port. The Conference Centre stairs are a really popular workout spot for just about anybody who wants a challenge, totaling 100 steps, each one loved and probably a little hated by many fitness enthusiasts like myself. You can make up your own workout, alternating step patterns, adding squat jumps, push ups, whatever you like, however crazy, you can create a really diverse and intense workout. Often I see PTs holding boot camps with large groups, it does get quite busy at peak times though and competition for right of way can be fierce! Having said that, if the jet lag has taken it out of you, just walking up and down can also create a really beneficial low impact workout. The great thing about this spot is the view of the both the Port and the City, it’s a nice atmosphere training alongside other’s outside and it’s essentially a free gym!
San Diego is steeped in outdoor activities from paddle boarding and surfing to running and cycling in Balboa Park or hiking in Palm Canyon. Why not cross the bridge to Coronado island with your bike by Ferry and cruise around the picturesque streets lined full of perfect displays of the ‘American Dream’ lifestyle? The houses are unbelievable! Whatever you decide to do, personally there is not a trip long enough to fit it all in, I still have a long list of new things to try here which never seems to shorten.
It’s well known that Californian’s eat well and look after themselves, I guess when you live in a place that’s hot most of the year, it’s always bikini season! Being in America, you can literally find any cuisine you can think of, but of course being a stone’s throw from LA the home of ‘clean eating’ healthy food is easily accessible. I’ve just about tried nearly every organic, super food, vegetarian, vegan food joint I can find and I have made a short list of places I love the most!
Undoubtedly my favourite cafe is; Cafe Gratitude a plant based (all vegan!) restaurant situated in the beautiful area of Little Italy. Their Breakfast is an absolute must, boasting a lengthy menu of goodies from buckwheat pancakes with cashew cream, chia seed pudding with fresh fruit, organic coffees, cold pressed juices and awesome power smoothies and of course wellness shots!
Sol Cal Cafe is another great place for breakfast close to the Gaslamp Quarter. Here you can grab yourself some smashed avocado with eggs on toast, or the best Acai bowl in the city. You also get a free organic coffee with every breakfast, what more could you want?
One of my favourite places to get a fresh juice or smoothie is Juice Crafters, you can find a couple of these dotted around the city, and there’s also one on Coronado Island. It ticks a lot of boxes; all vegan, organic, non gmo and locally sourced. If you’re looking for something filling you should try one of their chickpea wraps or one of my favourites, the Acai protein bowl loaded with walnuts, strawberries and almond butter.
Why not try California’s healthy version of fast food? Tender Greens is a chain with a “fast food” style approach to dining with the outcome of nothing but delicious goodness. From giant salads topped with tender steak, to warming soups and tasty vegan dishes, there’s something to please everyone. Plus the staff are always super friendly!
I literally could go on and on about how cool this city is and how easy it is to be healthy in San Diego, coming here for me now has become somewhat of a ritual, sometimes I feel like it’s my second home – or at least I wish it was! Besides the lack of sleep which comes (to me) with traveling west, overcoming that I generally arrive home feeling happy and healthy. I put this down to the amount of time I get to spend outside exercising and how easy it is to find great, healthy food. Also the lovely, friendly people of San Diego might have a little something to do with that too.
If you too have been to San Diego or live there and there’s something I should check out please do let me know, I’m always looking for fun and new things to try. If you want any more information on the places or activities I’ve mentioned please do let me know if you are planning a visit!