All I can say was today was unreal.......with each peddle stroke I fell in love with my road bike more and more. To say I am in love with Mallorca is an understatement.
8,700' of climbing with grades reaches 11%!
We covered 140k or 85 miles and I felt absolutely stronger than ever. I must attribute this to my recovery routine of stretching and refueling like a pro! I also got an unreal massage from one of the cyclist girlfriend at the camp. Scott her boyfriend is without a doubt the strongest rider here and now I know his secret weapon.....Leeann. Leeann is a true professional and provided great massages to the cyclist while on the trip.
Did I mention that The climbing today was brilliant?!
The weather could not have been better. It rose into the 70's and as the landscape changed so too did the aromas.....the scent of pine, lemon, almonds and even the goat smell were ever so present. This reminds me that through my venture here in Mallorca we have passed countless fields of sheep and goat. High up in the mountain tops I have often heard cow bells ringing. On these climbs I can't get enough of this sound and yelled out many a time how I felt we were in the tour with the last Kilometer or two to go before the finish........nothing like having an imagination!
Again, Mallorca's long winding gradients, rarely seem to go above 7 or 8 %. However today we rode many a 10 to 11% grade up a mountain we climbed named Puig Major! This climb lasted 14 K and me and my new buddy Dave from NYC attacked this mountain like no body's business. I settled into a rhythm and locked into a groove all the way to the top....talking and encouraging Dave to push harder and make it count. after reaching the summit we were now atop the highest overlook the island has to offer.......what else can i say but, magnificent Mallorca! Now that this climb was under our belt we went through yet another tunnel and rode the remaining 40 miles so fast that I have face burn from the speeds I encountered back to the hotel. I have typo thank Sammy, one of the GPM 10 guides and Paul S for pulling me through every rolling hill and phenomenal turn that had me ask mother Mary to watch over us as we navigated our way faster and faster on this decent.......I loved every minute and learned so much about thi stream sport of cycling. Yes on a down hill!
The ride finished with no fan fare as Paul and I high fiver one another and I thanked him immensely for sharing his knowledge without saying a word during our last 40 miles together.....went back to my room, got on my run shoes and went for a short but quick transition run. The rest of the riders arrived soon after and we sat out side on the lounge chairs and couches and refueled and chatted about today's ride.
The following people have come into my life as a result of this trip and I asked them to share a few words on their experience.........
Hi I'm Paul and I'm 25 years old and a resident of New York City. This is my second time in Mallorca and plan on coming for years to come. Really a great way to kick off the season especially when coming from the cold winters in the north east. Today we did several climbs but the main one was Puig Major which was 14k and a relatively steady gradient at 5.5 to 11%. While this climb does not favor me due to my weight (much prefer the steeper gradients) it was still great to crush the souls of some of the older guys trying to keep up. Spent an hour afterwords eating and stretching and then dipped my legs in the ice cold pool on the property. Hopefully the legs will be ready to go for tomorrow where there is a group sprint at the end for bragging rights.
Hey there....I'm Betsy. I'm one of three women on the trip (and, at age 50, by far the oldest!). I'm loving this trip....the cycling, the scenery, the people.....but it is tough and kicking my butt! I've never done a training trip this challenging, but it is a great way to start to get in shape for the upcoming tri season. (I'm training for Ironman Mont Tremblant... Which will be my sixth Ironman.) Our resort is full of German and Austrian triathlete clubs. They seem to be a lot more intense than we are. We are more interested in having fun and making fun of each other!! I hope to see Jose in the coming months...and maybe to meet some of his athletes!!!
My name is Arthur. I'm 65 and have been riding on the road for 2 years. The trip is a great way to improve your riding and while difficult the support and comradely makes you put forth your best effort.
Hi all, I'm Ruedi and third is my first trip here. I grew up in Switzerland and have seen many hard climbs in the Alps. But this experience here has been wonderful. A great mix of rolling miles together with some amazing climbs of different grades and length. A perfect start to a good season. I am only a recreational rider but have a good time with the great mix of people that make up the wonderful group. I know I will be back another Year and hopefully will some of you. Jose is a great inspiration and you are fortunate to have such a fun and caring coach. Good luck with your races!!!
Ok, that's it for day six. Tomorrow we have a four hour day planned with two hours out......lunch and espresso.......then a two hour ride back. The ride is supposed to be an easy recovery ride and we have all agreed to the challenge of a sprint finish back to the hotel broken up into age groups...... 29 and under group......30 to 49 group .......and finally he 50 and above group. No predictions, but it will be close for sure!