The secret to fitting exercise into your schedule is to begin the day with exercise, before other demands and distractions kick in. Here are several ways to start your workout in NELA before 7 a.m.
Swim. The inviting pool at the Glassell Park Recreation Center has adult morning lap swim starting at 6 a.m., the likeliest time of day to get a lane to yourself (though sharing with one or two other swimmers is not a problem at this spacious, friendly pool.) You can buy a day pass for $3.50 or a package of 30 admissions for $87.50. Senior discounts available. / Glassell Park swimming pool / 3704 Verdugo Rd. / For more information, call 323-226-1670 or visit: lacitypools.com
Walk the dog on a different trail. Head north on Verdugo Rd, turn right on Glenoaks Blvd. and then right on Sleepy Hollow Dr. You’ll find the trail head to paths above the 134 freeway, overlooking Eagle Rock and Glendale. For a vigorous up-and-down walk, turn right on the trail to take Valle Vista Fire Road. For a nice stroll, go left toward the Glendale Open Space Reserve. The early morning is optimal because it’s still relatively cool and you and your pooch can enjoy the sensation of waking up with the city itself.
Find new jogging routes in the neighborhood. The relative coolness of early morning makes it a good time to go for a run. The Route Genius at mapmyrun.com asks you the distance you want to cover and then maps a loop in your area.
Go to the Park, with Purpose. L.A. city parks open at dawn — and sunrise in NELA this summer is from 5:45 a.m. on July 1 to 6:25 a.m. on Aug. 31. So early summer mornings are a good time to use the outdoor fitness equipment that has been installed at Garvanza Park in Highland Park (6240 E. Meridian St.); the Eagle Rock Recreation Center (1100 Eagle Vista Dr); and the Glassell Park Recreation Center (3650 Verdugo Rd.) The fitness equipment, which you can use free of charge, is designed to build strength, give a cardio workout and increase flexibility.
Do yoga. You can be on the yoga mat before 7 a.m. in classes at Kinship Yoga and Namaste, both in Highland Park.
At Kinship, classes start at 6 a.m. Monday through Friday and go for 75 minutes of mindful yet energetic sequences in a heated room. (There are showers in the men’s and women’s locker rooms.) A single, drop-in class is $17, but lower-priced introductory and multi-class packages are available. / Kinship Yoga / 5612 N. Figueroa St. / 213-484-9770 / kinshipyoga.com /
At Namaste, one-hour classes start at 6:45 a.m., including all-level Hatha classes (Monday and Friday), Hatha alignment class (Wednesday) and advanced Vinyasa (Tuesday). A single class is $18, but introductory and other multi-class packages are available. / Namaste / 5118 York Blvd. /323-212-5118 / namastestudios.la /
Ride. For a high energy start to the day, try a 60-minute indoor cycling class weekday mornings at 6 a.m. at Rev Cycle in Eagle Rock. A single class is $20, but new clients can get a one-month unlimited pass for $59 and established clients can get a monthly unlimited pass for $140. / Rev Cycle / 1457 Colorado Blvd. # 101 / 323-403-0522 / revcyclingla.com
Or, you can ride for 45 minutes every weekday morning starting at 6:15 a.m. at Cycling Pigeon. Single class is $25; reduced prices are available for package deals; monthly unlimited is $125. / Cycling Pigeon / 4504 Eagle Rock Blvd. / 323-352-8242 / cocofausonewilson.com
Train, train, train
Crossfit Ganbatte (Glassell Park) The hour-long class at 5:30 a.m. weekday mornings features varied functional movements performed at high intensity. / 3235 N. San Fernando Rd., Bldg 4. /323-739-9138 / ganbattefitness.com / Membership ranges from $190 to $220 a month
Nela Athletics CrossFit (Eagle Rock) An hour-long class, starting at 5:30 a.m. every weekday morning, includes a warm up, skill work and a short, intense workout. $189/month for a 12-month sign up; $199 for three times a week; $219 for month-to-month unlimited / 4662 Eagle Rock Blvd. / 323-902-7625 / nelaathletics.com
Aay! Fitness (Glassell Park) The classes at 5:45 a.m. Monday through Friday rotate between full-body strength training and dynamic movement. First workout free for new clients who sign up online; $79 for first-month unlimited pass; $20 for single class; $189 monthly unlimited / 3000 Dolores St./ 323-989-4229. aayfitness.com
Artistic Athletics (Eagle Rock) The early morning class in high-intensity interval training starts at 6 a.m., Monday through Friday, and finishes a sweaty and satisfying 45 minutes later. $18 single class; $150 for 10-class package; $90 monthly unlimited with one-time $50 fee / 2102 Colorado Blvd. (Enter through alley at back) / 323-259-9009 / artisticathletics.com
METAMORPHOSIS (Eagle Rock) The Monday-through-Friday classes at 6 a.m. take 50 minutes and rotate each day from lower body, arms and abs, and full body work mixed with endurance or speedwork training. $15 for first class for new clients; $32 single class; multi-class packages available. / 2104 Colorado Blvd. / 626-219-7000 / studiometamorphosis.com