AltaMed man and women riding bikes by the beach

Outdoor Activities You Can Do All Year Long

Quick, think of five things you love about Southern California. If you’re anything like us, the warm, sunny weather probably made your list. While the rest of the country braces for a long, snowy winter, Angelenos can stay healthy and active, January through December. Check out these fun outdoor activities you and your family can enjoy all year long.

Go Swimming

Little Girl Swimming Under Water

During months when it’s too cold for taking a dip in the ocean, try visiting one of LA’s public or year-round swimming pools. Swimming offers a whole-body workout with no impact on your joints, and many people enjoy swimming well into their senior years. Some facilities offer other activities, such as water fitness, aqua aerobics, and even land-based classes like yoga and Zumba. The City of Los Angeles has 16-year round pools, and adults can show their Los Angeles library cards to get $1.50 off with every visit.

Take a Hike

Three People Jumping On Rocks Having Fun

Thanks to SoCal’s mild winter months, hiking is excellent cardio, no gym required. Beginners have plenty of options such as walking trails in Elysian Park (behind Dodger Stadium) and the Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area, where you can enjoy incredible, panoramic views of Los Angeles! Together, Griffith Park and the San Gabriel Mountains offer hundreds of miles of trails, with hikes that range from easy and family-friendly to challenging, all-day treks. Be sure to check the weather forecast ahead of time and dress in comfortable, removable layers.

Join a Sports Team

Guys Playing Soccer

Feeling a little competitive? Try joining a year-round sports league. There are organized outings for many popular sports including soccer, basketball, or baseball, that meet and play every month. Looking to try something new? There are leagues for all kinds of skill levels, so you can learn and have fun at the same time. Playing sports is a fantastic way to burn calories and build muscle, so you’ll stay active and healthy.

Explore a Farmers Market

Mom and Daughter Exploring a Farmers Market

Farmers markets are a fun way to spend a weekend morning and get some steps in. Many markets, like the Farmer’s Market at Bank of America Plaza in Downtown LA and the East Los Angeles Farmers Market, run year-round, so you can stay fully stocked on healthy ingredients. Take time to walk the entirety of the market and explore stalls of colorful, seasonal produce, canned goods, prepared foods, and more! Look online to see local markets in your area. Loaded up on fresh foods? Check out some of AltaMed’s easy recipe ideas.

Get Moving with Your Furry Friend

Woman Frolicking with a Bunch of Dogs in the Grass

No matter the time of year, dogs need to get outside and get moving. If you live in an apartment or don’t always have time to walk your dog twice a day, check out the local dog parks in your area. Both you and your dog will get great exercise walking around and enjoying the outdoors. Remember to come prepared with doggie bags and a leash. Ready for a walk? Try the Arts District Dog Park in Downtown LA, or the Bone Yard in Culver City, considered two of the best dog parks around.

Get Moving and Have Fun!

Young Family Walking on the Beach

Staying active all year round is important for your long-term health. Thanks to Southern California’s great weather, finding fun outdoor activities is easy. Invite friends along or take the family, and you’ll find activities to look forward to for years to come. Want to learn more? Check out these other great ideas for staying active and healthy.

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Eating Until You’re Color-Full

Colorful foods aren’t just nice to look at, they offer a lot of benefits to your health!

Colorful Berries

Red, Blue, and Purple Food:

  • They can lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, cancer, urinary tract infections, and memory loss.
  • These foods contain potassium, vitamins A and C, and folate.
  • They are known for anti-inflammatory properties, helping to protect against cell damage, and keeping the heart, blood, joint, and immune systems healthy.
  • Foods include tomatoes, pomegranates, berries, watermelon, cabbage, beets, eggplant, grapes, raisins, cherries, kidney beans, and red pepper.
Bunch of Lemons

Orange and Yellow Food:

  • They can improve immune function and lower the risk of heart disease, vision problems and cancer.
  • These foods contain folate, potassium, bromium, vitamins A and C, iron, and calcium.
  • They are known for flushing out toxins and keeping the eyes, skin, teeth, and bones healthy.
  • Try carrots, lemons, oranges, corn, peaches, nectarines, mango, squash, pineapple, bell pepper, cantaloupe, and sweet potatoes.
Green Vegetables and Fruits

Green Food:

  • They can lower the risk of cancer and vision problems.
  • These foods contain folate and vitamins A, C, and K.
  • They are known for fighting free radicals, helping prevent blood clots, and regulating blood sugar.
  • Foods include leafy greens like kale, spinach and arugula, green apples, limes, kiwi, avocado, cucumber, asparagus, green beans, grapes, and broccoli.&
Bunch of Garlics

White Food:

  • They can lower the risk for stroke, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, and cancers like colorectal cancer.
  • These foods contain potassium, folate, niacin, riboflavin, and vitamin C.
  • They are known for providing essential dietary fiber and supporting the immune and circulatory systems.
  • Try pears, bananas, cauliflower, mushrooms, ginger, dates, potatoes, garlic, onions, black eyed peas, and white nectarines.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, we should all try to eat five to nine servings of fruits and vegetables per day in a variety of colors. So go ahead and fill your plate with a rainbow of fruits and veggies!

Women in Field

Boost Your Immune System!

Flu season is around the corner. Are you ready to take it on? These simple lifestyle changes can help boost your body’s natural defenses!

Get Moving

Mother and Daughters Running on the Beach

The body is naturally designed to move, so get to it! Exercising helps you maintain a healthy weight and supports your heart health. Being active decreases stress hormones so your mind and body are in balance. Regular exercise boosts the cells in your immune system, so your body can fight bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

Exercise also provides a natural way to reduce inflammation and lower the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and many other conditions. So get to your yoga class, take a stroll with your pet, or fly a kite… it all counts as exercise as long as you keep moving!

Catch Some Zzz’s

Man Sleeping

Don’t yawn now! Being anxious, stressed out, and not getting enough sleep can make you sick. Your immune system is suppressed when cortisol (a hormone) is produced at a high rate. Sleep can fix that! If you’re having a problem sleeping, try a common remedy such as a warm bath, caffeine-free tea, or surround yourself with the scent of lavender. Lowering your risk of getting sick this season is as easy as getting enough sleep, so close your eyes and dream on.

Live a Little

Woman with Her Daughter

A happy body is the home to a happy mind. Studies show that there is a strong connection between your emotional state and your immune system. Spending time with your loved ones or sharing a laugh with friends can actually help you fight off illnesses. Do what makes you happy from the inside so you can support feeling good from the outside.

It’s all About the Gut

Woman Forming a Heart with Her Hands on Her Belly

Your digestive system is your body’s vitamin and nutrient factory. Fuel that factory with superfoods such as garlic, ginger, and turmeric. Citrus fruits such as oranges, grapefruit, and lemons are naturally loaded with Vitamin C, and foods rich in probiotics (yogurt, kimchi, and sauerkraut) can help balance bacteria for a healthy digestive tract. Remember that food is a powerful tool: give your body what it needs to help fight seasonal illnesses.

Beat Illnesses to the Punch

Red Boxing Gloves

Knock out your chances of getting sick. Start by getting your annual physical to help keep your overall health on track. Beat illnesses to the punch and see your primary care provider for preventative care such as immunizations, screenings, and tests.

A healthy life can boost your immune system. From your diet to your thoughts, it’s all connected. Make yourself feel good from the inside out and your immune system will follow!

Outdoor Activities You Can Do All Year Long