My LA to Z: John Brenkus

Between 100-mile bike rides, the show ESPN show host and author told us his favorite places along the coast


On ESPN’s Sport Science, John Brenkus studies the bodies and work of today’s greatest athletes, so its no surprise to learn that the show host and creator, whose book, The Perfection Point: Sport Science Predicts the Fastest Man, the Highest Jump, and the Limits of Athletic Performance debuted last month, is an Ironman triathlete himself. 


Saddle Peak Lodge

My wife and I love Saddle Peak Lodge. It’s just an incredibly unique restaurant. The menu is different than any other restaurant in town and the atmosphere is amazing. I love ordering the elk.

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Zuma Beach

My wife and I train for triathlons, and we will ride a 50-mile loop from Zuma to Las Posas. It’s pretty nice all year round. You do get June Gloom and it was pretty overcast all summer, but it’s starting to clear up now. It’s takes about 2.5 hours, and it’s beautiful with the waves breaking just to your right. Sometimes we’ll ride the loop twice and make it 100 miles. We get really big workouts in L.A.



Stunt Road

The other bike ride we do is from Piuma Road to Stunt Road, which goes up the Santa Monica Mountains and among the ridge. It’s just gorgeous. You have endless valley to your left and endless ocean to your right.



Old Town Calabasas

It’s a gem of L.A. That’s where we live and it’s just amazing. Old Town has quaint shops and it feels very mom-and-pop. It doesn’t just feel like your average strip mall. You can get most things that you need, and whatever’s not there is right down the street.

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It’s close to the house and a well-kept gym. I also belong to Spectrum because Equinox doesn’t have a pool. I like Equinox better as an overall gym. I like the classes and the instructors. But I’ve got to belong somewhere else, too. I need that pool.

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Malibu Seafood Café

It’s right along PCH. We love to order the sea bass. It’s like a shack with fish—super basic but it is really fresh and so good that you can’t resist.

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El Matador Beach

It’s the first place I take people from out of town. It’s this gorgeous beach with giant rocks that looks like it’s out of Planet of the Apes, like you’re totally away. We ride by it every weekend and we get down to the beach as much as we can.

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Calabasas Lake

We love to go down with the kids and play baseball, football, or soccer and chase the bunnies and ducks around the lake. It’s a big lake and it’s very private. That’s where we go to completely chill.

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Muvico Theaters

It’s one of like four theaters in the country with cinema 4K projection and it’s amazing. We saw The Town there and loved it. Ben Affleck knows what he’s doing. We try to go out and see two or three movies a month.

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Malibu Creek State Park

It’s such a hidden old gem, and it’s great for the kids because it’s so wide open and so diverse. It has great big fields they can run through and dirt paths and water you can skip stones on. It has such a diverse landscape in a small, compact area. The kids just run wild.

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Images courtesy of (in order):, flickr/stevevoght ,,,,, flickr/gtall1,,, flickr/patrickwoodward