I’m on a rest day on a training camp. Which means that for 24 hours it’s not really a training camp at all but an odd holiday where we all wear the same clothes and talk about bikes all the time.
It’s also pouring down with rain, which is quite satisfying. Portugal (I’m in Portugal) I expect has an allotted amount of rainfall, and every hour it spends raining while we’re sat inside surely reduces the odds of it raining when we go outside. Science.
Rest days tend to lead to an overload of meetings as well. Every evening on camp we do a short video analysis meeting before dinner, but with the whole day before that free as well, we can fit in all sorts of meetings on a rest day.
Meetings about coming training phases, selection targets, racing reviews, thoughts, feelings, how round the wheel should be and so on. It gets heavy.
You have to make sure you set aside time to get to a cafe and try the local baked goods as healthy distraction. The going rate for a coffee in the town we’re staying is 45 cents, so it feels rude not to round the order up with at least a couple of Portuguese tarts.
I’ll be living this camp lifestyle for the next couple of months. Once back from Portugal I’m off to Berlin for the next round of the Track World Cup, then the London round in quick succession, before heading off on the Archibald Christmas Training Camp in Lanzarote.
The 2018 Christmas Camp will be our second edition, though I’m already excited for the 2019 camp to make it an official Christmas tradition.
I’ve even roped in a trike-riding training buddy to come along this time so I can get more shelter. Not shelter from the infamous Lanzarote wind, you understand, but social shelter from a week that would otherwise be spent only in the company of Archibalds.
Would you want to spend seven days straight with a family that chooses to run away from home and spend its Christmas on what is essentially a warm version of the moon?
But please don’t tell Hannah Dines (my trike pal) — she’s already bought her ticket.