By Max Mervis

Pumpkin pie; hot buttered rum; your grandmother’s famous turkey and stuffing; gingerbread – need I say more? Holiday “sugar splurges” can quickly undo our fitness goals and turn our bodies into a bloated mess. Still, what’s merriment without a bit of sweet indulgence?   

Not to worry – within just a few blocks of Venice, you will find one of the most scenic routes to burn off those stubborn holiday pounds. The Marvin Braude Bike Trail runs southward from Marina Del Rey along the beach and boasts some of the most naturally spectacular scenery in the Southland.

The route follows a flat, curving path, rolls through many different beach communities like Playa del Rey south into Manhattan Beach. For a quick caffeine boost to get you started, try Tanner’s Coffee Company, a fun, eclectic spot in Playa del Rey to grab a low-fat, ice blended java. SoCal owned and operated, Tanner’s is located in a wonderful historic building less than a half mile off the trail on Culver Blvd.

Once you hit Manhattan Beach you’ve managed to cycle about 10 miles, depending on your starting point. Chances are you’ll need to be refueled, so we recommend stopping at Paradise Bowls, at 11th Street and Manhattan Avenue. Locally owned and operated, vitamin-packed superfruits are the name of the game here, whether you choose one of their cleansing, organic cereal and fruit bowls, or one of the most amazing smoothies you’ve ever tasted. We recommend the Sunset, which is packed with raspberries, strawberries, mango and freshly pressed apple juice. Yum!

Along almost the entire route, aside from our suggestions, you’ll find many more restaurants, snack stands, bike rentals, restrooms, repair shops and path access. The trail ends in Torrance County Beach, in a parking lot at the base of the Palos Verdes Peninsula hills. From Marina Del Rey to Torrance County Beach, the ride is approximately 13 miles, making for a seaside round trip of 26 miles – and plenty of cardio to work off those sugar calories.

No need to even think of this as exercise; this is the perfect and most beautiful way to burn away those holiday pounds and enjoy the beach while doing it!


Max Mervis has amassed 18 years extensive knowledge of the resale market and more than 12 years of on-site new home sales experience. Most recently, Max conducted sales at the iconic Ritz Carlton Residences at LA LIVE. Max currently resides in Venice, and he is an expert in the beach communities of Venice/Marina del Rey and Santa Monica. He loves the architecture, the people and making new friends through his continued passion for real estate.

Should you need any assistance on on finding or selling a home, please feel free to contact Max.