Discover Morro Bay


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Morro Bay, the Resolution Destination


YES! Morro Bay is your resolution destination for 2016 and beyond! Why workout out within the walls of a gym when you can get out and explore nature, burn some calories and get in shape. Morro Bay offers many fun recreational activities on land and in the sea.

Click on the activity below to direct you to an informational page on how many calories you can burn and other helpful information on equipment rentals, maps, trails and MORE!

It is perhaps common knowledge that playing golf can help keep a person healthy. Well, most avid golfers have been trying to convince their spouses or significant others for years. Now you have written proof, that golf is indeed healthy and should be played often.

In the state park, the Morro Bay Golf Course is located in one of the most beautiful and serene places on the central coast of California. Coined as the "Poor Man's Pebble Beach", this 18-hole course is a storied “must play” for avid golf groups. The course’s terrain is hilly and the putting is challenging, but the payoff is quite grand, with ocean and bay views on all 18 holes; which makes getting exercise is anything but par.

In an article by Becky Sauers posted on, research conducted by Neil Wolkodoff of the Rose Center for Health and Sports Sciences (Denver, Colo.) was used to show roughly how many calories were burned playing an average 9-hole golf course. According to the article golfers who walk and carry their own bag burn 721 calories, golfers using a pull cart burn 718 calories, golfers walking with a caddie burn 613 calories and golfers riding in a golf cart burn 411 calories on average.

According to research presented in the article, burning 2,500 calories a week can greatly reduce the risks of heart disease, diabetes and cancer. As such, it is easy to see how playing more rounds of golf can factor into a healthy lifestyle.

The League of American Bicyclists recognized the City of Morro Bay with a Bronze level Bicycle Friendly Community (BFBSM) award, joining more than 325 visionary communities from across the country.

Bicycling is one of the best exercises you can do if you want to burn as many calories as possible, especially in Morro Bay. There are trails throughout the city and the county for the novice to the advanced. If you happen to have left your bike at home, you can rent one at The Bike Shop, Farmer's or get a chance to use one for free when staying at the Pleasant Inn.

Bicycling more than 20 mph is tied for first with running among 150 exercises assessed by the Harvard Heart Letter in its July 2004 publication and tied for third among approximately 175 exercises assessed by the State of Wisconsin’s Department of Health and Family Services. In their book “The Well Adult,” Dr. Mike Samuels and Nancy Samuels analyze only 25 exercises, but bicycling ranks second behind running.

Vigorous Cycling
Bicycling 14 to 15.9 mph is considered a “vigorous effort” by the Wisconsin Department of Health. More vigorous efforts spur greater calorie losses by increasing your heart rate and the amount of fuel your body burns, according to “Swim, Bike, Run.” When you bicycle 14 to 15.9 mph, you burn about 58 calories per mile if you weigh 190 pounds, about 47 calories per mile if you’re 155 pounds and about 39 calories per mile if you’re 130 pounds.

Moderate Cycling
Bicycling 12 to 13.9 mph is a “moderate effort,” according to the Wisconsin Department of Health. When you bicycle 12 to 13.9 mph, you burn about 53 calories per mile if you weigh 190 pounds, about 43 calories per mile if you’re 155 pounds and about 36 calories per mile if you’re 130 pounds.

Light Cycling
Bicycling 10 to 11.9 mph is regarded as a “light effort” by the Wisconsin Department of Health. When you bicycle 10 to 11.9 mph, you burn about 47 calories per mile if you weigh 190 pounds, about 38 calories per mile if you’re 155 pounds and about 32 calories per mile if you’re 130 pounds.

Hiking is a way to lose weight and get in shape. Whether you take daily walks in the park or go on weekend trips to the mountains, you will be burning calories and gaining muscle. Morro Bay and San Luis Obispo County has a number of different hiking trails available--moderate to difficult.

Area Hiking Trails

Body Weight
The number of calories burned hiking depends in part on your body weight. In general, a 160-lb person burns between 430 and 440 calories per hour of hiking. A 200-lb person burns approximately 550 calories per hour of hiking. The more you weigh, the more calories you burn in an hour of hiking.

In a study published by the American Council for Sports Medicine in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, researchers found that a high exercise intensity increases your calorie burn even after your done with the activity. When you hike at a high intensity for 45 minutes, you’ll burn an additional 190 calories later in the day. Your metabolism increases with a vigorous hike and the extra calorie burn lasts for an average of 14.2 hours of after your done, and it can continue through the first 3.5 hours of sleep.

Terrain also plays a large part in how may calories you burn hiking. Since terrain varies so much, it is impossible to say exactly how hiking in a specific area will change the number of calories you burn. For example, you will burn more calories walking on flat, rocky ground than on flat, grassy ground. However, you will burn more calories walking uphill on grass than flat, rocky terrain. Generally, if the hike is challenging, you will burn more calories.

Biking and running are popular choices to burn calories, but if you don’t enjoy these sports don’t be afraid to try other outdoor sports, such as kayaking, to burn calories while you have fun. In Morro Bay there are a number of options to kayak in the community.

The American College of Sports Medicine states that enjoyable activities like kayaking promote exercise adherence and subsequent weight loss. According to the American Council on Exercise, a 125-lb. person burns 283 calories per hour of kayaking while a 150-lb. person burns 340, a 175-lb. person burns 397 calories and a 200-lb. person burns 454 calories. Higher body weight requires increased energy expenditure for activity.

Depending on how many calories you want to burn kayaking, for a more peaceful and relaxing experience, Morro Bay's protected bay is recommended, but if you are looking for a more advanced experience, the open ocean just north of Morro Rock may be more your style. Many people come to Morro Bay equipped to begin their experience right away, but if you happen to want to leave your kayak and paddle at home, we have plenty of businesses who provide rentals.

A Kayak Shack, (805) 772-8796
10 State Park Road

Kayak Horizons, (805) 772-6444
551 Embarcadero

Morro Bay Stand Up Paddleboarding
, (805) 550-1678
601 Embarcadero

Rock Kayak Co., (805) 772-2906
845 Embarcadero

Sub Sea Tours & Kayaks, (805) 772-9463
699 Embarcadero

Paddle boarding is not only fun it can be amazing form of low impact exercise. You engage your core while simultaneously activating the burn in your arms, legs, and back. It’s a full body workout and great for your balance. Surfers call it some of the best crossing training you can do when not surfing.

Recreational Light SUPing: Just enjoying the experience of standing on water and lightly paddling along as you take in the bright sunlight and refreshing air around you will burn about 225 calories per hour. That is similar to what you would expect out of a pleasant hike through the woods or the back country.

Adventure Touring SUPing: If you prefer exploring new waterways while enjoying the sights and basically going on an adventure outing on your SUP then you will end up spending about 400 to 500 calories an hour. This is because touring or expedition paddling involves slightly more pace, longer workouts, and higher utilization of the core muscle groups. You can compare this to taking a light jog around the neighborhood early in the morning. However one thing you can’t compare is the wear and tear on your body as compared to running or other forms of exercise required to achieve an intense calorie burning workout.

Race or Competition SUPing: This is the most intense form of stand up paddle boarding in terms of exercise and calories burned. When you are expected to paddle at full explosive speed against the elements (including winds and sea state) and then turn around at an outer buoy and head back towards the shoreline, expect at least a good 850 to 1000 calories burnt in an hour. Professionals and SUP racers have been known to notice their core muscles and backs sore after competitive races because they are so intense but this group of watermen is also known for being incredibly fit and healthy as a result of their lifestyle.

Surfing SUPing: Surfing on paddle boards is a difficult activity to gauge because it involves short bursts of energy with plenty of intermittent waiting on your knees or belly for the next wave. Nevertheless, SUPers who have recorded their activity levels with calorie/heart rate monitors suggest that moderate sized waves and surfing on them expends 500 to 600 calories an hour. It largely can depend on what’s known as the “interval” or “period” between the waves. Some days the energy that generated the waves (the original storm or wind event) might be thousands of miles away, which will result in the long “lulls” or breaks between wave sets. On the other hand many surf sessions, particularly on the East Coast and Great Lakes, are in short-interval wind waves where there is never a break or rest. This type of steady-state wave catching and paddling is actually the most intense caloric workout available, easily getting into the 1000+ calories per hour burned range. If the waves are large, in addition to just consistent, then that number increases further.

A Kayak Shack, (805) 772-8796
10 State Park Road

Kayak Horizons, (805) 772-6444
551 Embarcadero

Morro Bay Stand Up Paddleboarding, (805) 550-1678
601 Embarcadero

Rock Kayak Co., (805) 772-2906
845 Embarcadero

The Paddleboard Company, (805) 225-5555
575 Embarcadero

Did you know an average shore dive can burn 600 calories per hour, about the same as jogging. Warm-water boat dives burn, on average 300 calories per hour, the equivalent to a brisk walk?

Scuba diving allows one to target specific muscle groups particularly in the legs, glutes, core and back while maneuvering through a medium that is hundreds of times more dense than air,” says Theresa Kaplan, director of communications for the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI). “To move efficiently through the water, a diver learns to streamline their body—engaging core, glute and back muscles—and kick from the hip, as opposed to from the knee to glide through the water. Let’s also not forget the out-of-water benefits of diving. Lifting scuba tanks, weights and other dive equipment can be comparable to many weight lifting exercises.

SLO Divers in Morro Bay offers a different type of experience in this destination--underwater! The 10-Buoy is an experience that will bring scuba certified divers just north of the Morro Bay Harbor entrance. Here you will find easy and exciting diving. This place is great for beginner and advanced divers alike. Located just 40 feet from the surface you will find a pinnacle surrounded with large rocks and boulders and a few other smaller pinnacles. This place is packed with sea life growing on top of each other competing for a spot on the reef. One of the main attractions is the Matridians. They are everywhere on the pinnacle and around it. These are the same creatures that are located at the Matridian Fields at the breakwater in Monterey. The only difference here is they are easy to find and no surface swim.


When the “kids” shouted “Let’s go surfing” in those beach movies from long ago, they were mostly talking about soaking in some sun and riding the waves. As it turns out, they were taking part in an exercise that is aerobic and anaerobic at the same time. It can also help ease stress and keep a body toned and fit.

For Morro Bay, surfing is not only a hobby, but a way of life. Having the Pacific Ocean at your doorstep, both residents and visitors alike enjoy this active sport. Just north of Morro Rock is open ocean and beaches that provide ideal surfing spots. Morro Beach also offers showers and restrooms to make it easier to gear up and gear down without bringing too much sand in your vehicle. If you want a more rustic setting to bring your gear and your dog, we recommend North Point Beach between Morro Bay & Cayucos. Which ever spot you choose, you will definitely get a work out in Morro Bay.

Fitness/Physical Benefits
According to the Better Health Channel, you can get a lot of physical exercise from surfing that will ultimately lead to weight loss and a toned body. Surfing strengthens the core and legs. It’s called “ocean therapy” because you develop your body through the constantly changing movement and height of the waves. Based on an activity calculator on Health Status, a 180-pound person surfing for 30 to 60 minutes can burn as many as 130 to 260 calories.

Psychological Benefits
A 2010 study by the California State University looked at how surfing can improve a person’s mood and prevent depression and stress. The study determined people described as depressed, angry or stressed become more calm, relaxed and happy after going through a surfing program for a few weeks. According to the Jimmy Miller Foundation, a program that helps individuals cope with mental and physical illness, surfers are more relaxed and effectively get rid of stress by staying close to nature and feeling free. People who engage in surfing, according to the University of California study, feel a deeper sense of tranquility, which boosts psychological balance as a whole.

Aerobic Benefits
Surfers must do a variety of cardiovascular exercises like paddling, swimming and running to the water. Regular surfing can improve the amount of blood being pumped in and out of the heart and how the body uses its oxygen. Over time, it could help people tolerate expanded physical activities and keep up their strength while they’re doing them.

In Morro Bay, there are a plenty of opportunities to rent or buy surf gear. Some of the places that we would recommend are Az.Hi.Az.I.aM Surf Shop along Front Street, Wavelengths Surf Shop along the Embarcadero or TKD Surf Shop on Main Street in downtown Morro Bay.