Banyoles Training Block

Yeah G'day m8s,

hru?

Actually, don't answer that. I couldn't care less how you are. All that matters is that you are reading my blog and for that I am thankful.

So... Where to start? Well currently I'm sitting in my apartment in Vitoria-Gasteiz. It was a little upsetting to leave Banyoles however I've been here now for five days and I'm growing quite fond of it. For this blog update I'll be giving you all an insight into how my month-long training block in Banyoles went down.

There are a number of things I already miss about Banyoles. I grew to love the farmhouse we stayed in, the training environment and the weather that consistently felt hotter than one thousand suns. Most of all however, I will miss the pleasant feeling of speaking fluent Catalan when I order "un cafè americano" (the only three words of Catalan I can speak) at the various quaint little cafe's sprawled throughout the city.



The square in which I would impress all the waitresses by ordering in their native tongue.


The riding in Banyoles was truly something special. Being a fairly skinny human being I enjoyed the undulating terrain as well as the two mountain climbs that we did throughout our stay. Below you will find a small compilation of images that I took whilst out on various rides. This way you can see for yourself how beautiful it was and I can save my energy typing. 


At the summit of Rocacorba
Looking like an absolute idiot at the summit of Rocacorba


At the summit of the Mare de Déu del Mont


Oh and these last two images are evidence that I was almost hospitalised, seeing white-lights in a semi-conscious state after colliding with a thorn bush on the Rocacorba descent. It must have grown from the centre of the road whilst we were resting at the top of the climb (either that or I was working too hard to notice it on the ascent).




I'm still finding it hard to look at these images as they bring back too many horrible memories that trigger my PTSD
 


 














You can't turn your nose up at the running in Banyoles either. The amazing six kilometer loop that surrounded the lake was where our MAV Shuttles, fartleks and most of our easy runs were completed. Due to the blistering heat post-run we would often find ourselves sneakily creeping into the lake, being cautious as not to alarm any authorities (as there was a 300 Euro fine for swimming when you haven't paid to do so). I'd have to say it's the most absurd law I've come across whilst being overseas but I wasn't going to risk being thrown in a Spanish prison arguing over it. 

Thanks to Pat Legge our masseuse/photographer for these three images.




Look how well those maroon business socks go with my fluoro yellow Brooks T7 Racers!


I promise our new haircuts don't always look this full on


How's that for an arty snap? It does annoy me that our HR-Monitor straps don't line up though




Well that's all you're getting for this one. Certainly a lot of pictures but I suppose they're easier to look at than reading big chunks of mundane text.

My next post will be a 
Tiszaújváros race report. It will be my second last preparation race for the World Juniors in London and will be a great chance for me to get some short/fast racing in (as it is a super sprint race format with heats/finals over two days).

You'll hear from me soon,



JTW. 

Victoria, British Columbia - The beginning of my four month journey.



Hi,

I am writing this from an open environment lounge on the third floor of a farmhouse in Serinya, Spain. I'll be spending the next three weeks here training with the crew and I don't think there is any chance I'll be getting sick of it. I haven't blogged in quite some time so I thought I better fill you all in on my previous three week expedition in Canada.

I started my overseas journey with a two week training camp in Victoria, British Columbia. I know I have the reputation of embellishing all my stories however I'm not exaggerating when I say it was some of the most enjoyable training I've ever done. I had absolutely no idea what to expect after stepping off the 17th and final flight to get there but was I sure impressed when I arrived.




MAV Shuttles. Trying my very hardest to not let Grandpa Pete and Marcel the Horse catch me.


Although the training environment in Victoria was amazing I took a while to get into the rhythm of things. Speed isn't a goal for me at the moment but it was still frustrating to get an honest thrashing from my training partners in many a session. I've never been happier than when I was told my Gym frequency was dropping down to only 2 sessions per week whilst overseas. I couldn't really feel the difference in muscle fatigue however I was really worried that 3 sessions a week in Melbourne was rushing my progression to look like Ronnie Coleman (definitely my goal).



Myself looking very broad-chested (unfortunately it's just the wind) and my pal Marcel sporting our lovely Giants

Below are two picturesque images I sourced from Google. They both depict scenic views of Thetis Lake which was one of the lakes we did an open water session at. The day we swam it was one of the most beautiful evenings and even these photo's don't do it justice.



Now the reason for me showing you these is because I want you to compare these two snaps with the photo I asked Danielle (my coach) to take of us after the swim. Not only were we not looking at the camera but now when I want to show other people one of the nicest swimming spots in the world I am forced to show them a blurry image of what looks like two black garbage bags floating in a New Delhi swamp.


Danielle Stefano- Great coach, awful photographer.

I believe the only negative of the whole trip was having no lane ropes in the pool which meant we may as well have been swimming in Taupo. Oh and the occasional three-day "detour" Danielle took us on to get to a session (yes, we got lost a lot but being nineteen without my license I'm hardly in a position to judge). -That's a big weight off my shoulders publicly admitting that on social media. I promise I'll get it when I arrive home.  


After two weeks in Victoria we headed off to Edmonton for me to race my first ever World Cup. I truly can't be bothered giving a big in depth report on a race that didn't end well but it was a learning experience and I was never expecting magnificent things at that stage of my training.

Well that's it. I know it's fairly short but my index finger's are cramping because I always mucked around in Computer Studies class and thus did not learn how to type efficiently (I'm serious, each paragraph takes me at least thirty minutes).

My plan is to fill you in more regularly with my Spanish adventures so I'm sure you will hear from me soon.