Day Ten: Eduardo’s Road To Fitness

Yesterday turned out to be a very quiet day, in terms of training and exercise.  We were planning on having a peacefull day at the beach as we had all been up late the night before at the Chicken Restaurant.

The phone rang and it was Jose.  He wanted us to come over for a swim on the beach and then join him for lunch at his place with his family.

He has a holiday flat in Canet de Mar.  It is common for those that live in Barcelona to get a small place either in the mountains or along the coast.  A retreat from the hustle and bustle, a place to eat, watch the sun set and chill with friends.

We drove up the B-20 and turned off at Canet de Mar and weaved our way through the narrow streets.  Driving in small Spanish towns is always a bit of a challenge.  The road signage is pretty bad. The locals know whether a road is one way or not and often don’t bother to put up signs to indicate the fact until it is too late – when a sweating tourist in a massive 4×4 ploughs into a milk float parade at a fiesta, having turned out of a small side street into the local ‘ramblas’ whilst trying to programme their Tom Tom.

The beach was quiet and the water was very clear.  I really enjoy snorkelling when visibility is superb.  I get a thrill out of looking out along the sea-bed, watching the ripples in the sand on the bottom disappear off into the every darkening inky blue depths.  I get an even greater buzz if I have the opportunity to free dive down to the edge of a reef with a ‘wall’, and can then peer over the edge into the abyss below. It is something I haven’t had the chance to do since I was in the Philippines, on the pencil thin island of Palawan, exploring a place called El Nido.  I remember it well and have made a mental note to take time out to ensure I do some free diving again.

Jose has got some serious silverware in his trophy cabinet.  He has won the Vet Challenge in Catalunya more times that he can remember and has a collection of medals, trophies and photographs of him on the podium that even Michael Phelps would be proud of.

This chap has a serious silverware collection

This chap has a serious silverware collection

Jose talked at some length about Spanish cycling and told us that there were fourteen thousand racing licences taken out last year in Catalunya alone.  There are over one thousand elite level mountain bike riders and roughly half that on the road side.  There was just one elite level female cyclo cross rider and upon hearing that Rosie, my wife who holds an elite level road racing licence, declared her desire to add to the list and make it two.

Dinner was typically delicious.  We had sliced hams, a large mixed salad and pasta, followed by fresh fruit.

I was happy to be refuelling that tank of mine, ready for the week ahead.  I am doubley happy as I heard that my good friend James will be visiting Barcelona next week and has kindly offered to bring my Cyfac road bike over.  Awesome news.
I received a couple of emails asking me to upload some video to YouTube of my cycle routes, which I have now done.  I must warn you that my camera phone lacks any form of image stabilization software and that my hands are less than stable whilst riding along.  The audio quality is dire and the commentary is random, to say the very least, however it will give you an idea of what the terrain and countryside is like around here.  The two videos were taken on the ride I describe in my previous blog entry.

I plan to do a 30 minute open water swim today and am looking forward to it, though the dreaded Mauve Stingers are still in the back of my mind.

I have, as promised, started my food diary and have augmented it with some scary looking shots of my meals on the table, taken moments before being inhaled by yours truly.

One last video for you then before I crack on…

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