Running in Kitsilano: Find Your Motivation at Kits Beach


Funny how seashells wash ashore like this
Funny how seashells wash ashore like this. Photo: Chelsea Siler

There is no better place to get motivated to exercise than at Kitsilano Beach. When I am on the fence about going for a run, and sense procrastination setting in, I put my gear on and walk down to the beach (it’s all downhill as I’m SOFO which is explained in this article). Once I’m at the beach, I feel ready and motivated to run in any number of directions. You see, there’s subliminal motivation hidden in the surroundings at Kits beach!

World class view

World class view

The view. Looking out to the ocean with mountains and green lush forest in the distance, the view from Kitsilano beach makes me want to explore. Vancouver is the greatest and greenest city in the world to run, and seeing the vast view from the beach reminds me to get moving and find a new route.

Waiting for runners to go by

Waiting for runners to go by


The people. Standing near the volleyball courts at Kits beach for five minutes, I declared that two things are certain. One, Kitsilano is home to a lot of runners. Two, the ‘80s are back. Multiple running groups go by in a flash of fluorescent shorts and fanny packs (most likely they were running belts, but a definite ‘80s vibe there). It’s refreshing to see people out being healthy, enjoying a chat, and digging into some friendly competition. Major props to the silver-haired grandpa who said to his twenty-something running companion, “race you to that tree!” as they zoomed by.

The entertainment. If you’re a parent, there’s a world-class playground close by where the mini super heroes in your life can exert their energy too. With a few friends and a little organization of kid supervision, you can take turns doing quick loops around the ‘hood.


Custom drink, custom view

The post-race treats. One of the best things about starting at Kits beach, is you get to finish at Kits beach too! Grab a post-race tea or iced coffee and enjoy the cool-down view from the best piece of real estate in Vancouver. When summer kicks into full swing I hear the Boathouse Surfside Grill & Bar has a slushy machine too. And really, what’s more motivating than earning a sweet summer slushy?

Getting myself to the beach is all I need to kickstart my running legs.

What do you do to get yourself out the door in Kitsilano?

Chelsea is a Kits-based ultrarunner. Read more about her adventures on her running blog Have a question about running in Kits? Post a comment and she’ll give you a hand.

Last modified: June 30, 2021

2 Responses to " Running in Kitsilano: Find Your Motivation at Kits Beach "

  1. cori kristensen says:

    well, I agree with all of the above, except the post run drinks/treats. WHEN does the kits beach concession open?? We’ve been down there twice in the last week on sunny evenings and afternoons and its closed?? the beach and park is packed and there’s nowhere to get a drink or some fries!! what gives?

  2. Chelsea says:

    Hi Cori,
    I just spoke with the Boathouse Restaurant (who run the Surfside Grill & Bar below). They are aiming to open it within the next 10 days (today being May 29). Won’t be too long! That will give us even more options for post-run treats 🙂