Swim, Bike, Run – On Holiday

I have been avoiding making the post, because I knew it would have to be one hell of a long post. Today, being the day before my next race, is rest day – and I have ben abandoned in LB’s new house, while he goes to the gym. So, really, I have no excuse not to use the time.

Early this month, LB and I set off on an intrepid adventure. We travelled to the Pyrenees mountains, to stay with the people at Pyrenees Multisport.

The trip began with a last minute, sudden realiseation that my bike needed to travel in a box. At 5mins-to-closing-time, LB drove (sped through a red light..) to collect a box from Halfords, so my beautiful Dolce had a handy carry case, even if it did carry the name ‘Carerra’ (what an insult to her..).

On arriving, we got our bikes fixed up, unpacked and took a look around the beautiful french villa, and a week or riding began. With a thunderstorm, and a broken pedal (his hire bike – Dolce was fine!). We got all that fixed, I went for a run to vent some frustration (a day on a plane and a very short ride did not bode well with rested, ready to go legs), and we chilled out for the rest of the evening. The first nights stay revealed to us the treats that would be served up over the next week – a huge dinner that more than filled us up, with chocolate brownies for pudding!

Day two was much more successful on the two-wheeled, locomotion front. The day started with a long, undulating stretch, whch became a beautiful ride over Col des Ares. Arriving home, we rested, ate a load of nuts, and set off to the lake for a dip in the lake. We managed about 100k in the day, so dinner wes well deserved, and sleep welcome!

Day three saw us climb over a col from Luscan (about 30k from out hotel), over to Spain. The climb was pretty tough, but we kept each other going, and the Spanish tapas at the other end went down a treat!

Day four was a non-bike day, and the day I completed an Olymic-Tri-In-A-Day – in the hope next season i’ll be able to string it all together! The day began with a fast 5k to the fortress town of St Betrand, where we wondered around the castle grounds, before running back. After some lunch, we went back to the lake, where I got in a good 1.8k swim, and we squeezed in a spot of sunbathing on the rocks right in the middle of the lake. LB chose to scare me by jumping from the rocks into the sometimes-shallow (non) depths, but thankfully he managed not to die… Which was good because there was lots more actvty to come, that required one to be alive..

Day five brought with it our biggest climb. A good, but shorter ride took us to the bottom of the mountain, where we sipped at some coffee, and prepared for the 20k climb. The col began on a pleasent slant, and the first 10k was fairly kind on the legs. The following 10k was harsher, but not nearly as steep as day three’s col, so it was more a constant slog than a short, sharp effort. We were cheered on by the car-riders, and encouraged by the ‘Go Lance’/’Go Team Sky’/’Allez, Allez’ chalk left over from the Tour De France. On reaching the top, we were a little disappointed by the number of cars ruining the view, but pleased to see the snow we’d managed to get ourselves adjacent to! The downward spiral to the bottom was long, and we arrived at the bottom at about 3pm – desperate for lunch! After having chowed down a huge baguette, and LB having had 2 crepes, we were on our way home. I promised myself a run, so after the 96k ride, off I went. Mainly, so having completed the swim and bike on my next race, I could remind myself what I was capable of.

Day six The trip came to an end, sadly 😦 I started the day with a 10k to St Betrand and back. A day spent in the city of Tolouse was saw beautiful shops, beautiful food, and fantastic coffee.

I think we enjoyed almost every minute of this holiday, the hard bits, the easy bits, and the bits spend eating wonderful food. Highly recommended.

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