Saturday, August 8, 2009

Training camp in the French Pyrénées


I just returned back from a Sunday long ride. We managed to get a group of 16 together to ride from Font Romeu to one of the highest climbs in the French Pyrénées, Port d'Envalira, 2408m! I am spending 25nights here in Font Romeu at 1800m to prepare for the 3 final races of the Triathlon World Championship Series.

Training is going well, I have had no hiccups. I am enjoying my 4th training camp here in as many years, so everything has got more familiar each year. This year I am training with another NZ triathlete, Kelly Bruce. We are swimming at the Altitude Training centre, CNEA (Centre Nationale Entrainement en Altitude) but living in a apartment in town in Font Romeu. We trained 24 hours last week and this week 22 hours. My partner, Laurent Vidal, has been keeping a close eye on me and tells me to slow down during some sessions because he plans them to be easier sessions. Another good reason to have Kelly here to train with because she always trains at a good pace. And he's right to worry because there is nothing worse than getting tired from training at altitude.
We have visited some beautiful places in our first 2 weeks including the beach at Collioure, the best restaurant in Prades and the Caldea mineral pools in Andorra la vieille. Laurent knows the Pryénées really well because he had a family vacation here every year for a month when he was young.