Tag Archives: hollywood

LA Fitness on a Budget

By Alicia Roman

Everyone knows that living in LA can cost a small fortune. However, staying active in LA doesn’t have to be expensive. With 365 days of sunshine, there are endless opportunities to stay active without spending more than a few dollars. Many people believe you have to be confined to the crowded campus gym, but with the following options just a short train/car ride away you’ll be looking at your workout regime with new energy and enthusiasm!

Hiking is a great way to explore a new area while also getting in some exercise. There are several hiking trails within a 20-minute drive from the USC campus. Take a trip to the Hollywood Hills at sunset and hike the 3.5 miles up to Wisdom Tree. This hike offers beautiful views of the Hollywood Reservoir and Downtown LA. Another option is to take a train to Los Feliz and visit the stunning Griffith Observatory. Most people will drive up to the Observatory, but an even better option is to hike to the top. It’s a quick and easy 40-minute hike from Fern Dell Dr. to the Griffith Observatory. Once at the top, you are rewarded with one of LA’s best views.

Photo by daveynin on Flickr

If you aren’t a big fan of hiking but enjoy the water, take advantage of the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. The Rose Bowl has countless options and it’s free of busy and overcrowded streets. Take a jog around the Rose Bowl, known to locals as the “Rose Bowl Loop”. You can stop by the Aquatics Center and take a $2.00 swim in their olympic size pool. If you’re not looking to swim or run, you can enjoy a nice bike ride around the complex. The Rose Bowl is a great option for those who need variety but aren’t looking to spend a lot on a gym membership.

Most people love going to the beach to relax and enjoy the weather. The beach can also be a great place to get in a weekend workout. Santa Monica Beach is only a short train ride from the USC campus. The beach can also be a nice place to workout when the weather’s too hot to be indoors. Santa Monica has several options for fitness and fun. Take a long walk along the beach or bring along a workout video from your phone and try it out on the sand. It will definitely add an element of difficulty to your regular workout. If you’re feel really adventurous you can visit the outdoor gym which is literally right on the sand! The best part of a beach workout is when you’re finished, you can take a refreshing dip in the ocean water!

With so many options around USC, you never have to feel like the gym is your only option. Sometimes, doing something different can remind you why you love exercising. Grab your suit and head to the beach or slip on your tennis shoes and go for a hike! You’ll be able to check out your new LA neighborhood with all the added health benefits.

Featured image from Wikimedia Commons

Alicia has a bachelor’s degree in Studio Art and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Clark University. She is currently enrolled in the Masters of Educational Counseling within Rossier School of Education. She has spent several years working in the field of Education. She spent three years living and teaching ESL in Taipei, Taiwan. She also coaches a special needs swim team at the Rose Bowl Aquatics Center in Pasadena. When she is not working, she loves reading, traveling, watching movies, and exercising.

Gearing up for the Oscars

By Shivam Goyal

Being a USC student, going out to the movies can be quite the struggle, mainly due to a lack of time and transportation options. However, it is awards season and the biggest ceremony of the year, the 88th Academy Awards (or “Oscars”) are coming up quick, Feb. 28th! I always make it a point to watch some of the nominated films beforehand so that I’m familiar with the contenders. This makes watching the awards more fun!  If you need a break from school and you love movies as much as I do, the next two weeks is a great time to catch up on those nominations.  The following is a list of the films with the most nominations. I recommend seeing these first to really prepare for the big show.

  1. The Revenant (12 nominations)
  2. Mad Max: Fury Road (10 nominations)
  3. The Martian (7 nominations)
  4. Carol (6 nominations)
  5. Bridge of Spies (6 nominations)

Below are my two favorite spots to watch a movie in Los Angeles.

Regal Cinema LA LIVE
Photo by Eric Richardson on Flickr

This choice is made of convenience, but it’s also a really great place for a movie escape. The Regal Cinemas at L.A. Live is only about an 8 minute drive away. If you don’t have a car, Uber is a great option and relatively cheap. Cheaper yet, there’s a bus and a train that will get you here as well.  The F Dash bus will drop you off right in front of L.A. Live, while the Expo Line light rail train station is only about two blocks away. Both modes will pick you up on the edge of campus and get you to the theater in about 15 minutes.

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LA Orientation

 By Anna Ngo

“Remember to call me when you get off the plane. Don’t talk to strangers!” my mom yelled to me as I got into the security line. I was off to college and this was the first time I was traveling by myself. My mother couldn’t be more worried. In her eyes, I was still her little girl, one she wasn’t ready to see grow up.

As I walked further and further down the security line, the sight of my family slowly disappeared. Walking towards the terminal, a rush of emotions suddenly hit me. I was excited, scared, and nervous all at the same time. I didn’t know what to expect yet I was ready for what was in store for me.

My dream of going to California was finally turning into a reality. When I applied to USC, it was on a whim and I wasn’t expecting anything. When I received my acceptance letter, I had to read it at least ten times to make sure it wasn’t a rejection letter. And now here I was, flying out to Los Angeles for my freshman orientation.

When I arrived on campus, I was completely overwhelmed. There was so much upbeat LIFE going on, from students playing frisbee in the quad to others slacklining between trees. This was college. This was LA!

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