Week 19 and I am enjoying an active holiday…
This week’s blog is brought to you by a Garibaldi, because we visited Sassari.
Memories of the Risorgimento
Monday 31 August 2015
I am on holiday in Sardinia, so this is more likely to turn into a travelog than a training blog. Which should make it a lot more fun. And possibly photo-heavy…
Now that’s what I call a breakfast
After a breakfast of muesli and fruit we set off for a walk around Sassari, once we had found a place to park which was near enough to the Cathedral. That was easier said than done thanks to the lack of clear roadsigns on the sprawling ringroad, and the parking place I did find turned out to be on a road down the side of the police station, and I am not convinced it was a parking space, so I may have got lucky there. It was a lovely sunny day and the town itself was quite striking, even though it did have a tired feel to it, and the Cathedral was stunning. We walked for 2.4 miles but I forgot to stop Strava when I got back to the car so I have had to delete the entry.
The side of the Cathedral at Sassari
You can see more photographs from Sassari here.
When we got back to the hotel and the hottest part of the day had passed, I went out to an area the hotel has which overlooks a rocky bay, where they have some platforms which were perfect for my reduced Para Fitness session, doing 4 x 25 press ups, 4 x 25 dips, 4 x 25 sit ups and 4 x 25 squats. The hotel even brought round some melon while I was doing it, which was a bonus.
Trying to get ready for Ricochet
As I told you last week, I had planned for every day of the holiday to swim for an hour and see how many laps of the hotel pool I could do in that time, finishing the final lap that I started before I hit the hour. It was a salt-water pool, which I found a little unusual, and generally left me feeling thirsty after my swims. So once I had finished my Para Fitness session I went up to the pool. I am not very good at swimming, and do not do it nearly as much as I would like to, but I kept going for the full hour, which I was pleased with. I did 15 laps of the pool again, in a time almost a minute faster than on Sunday.
My breakfast had kept me well fuelled through the day, and there was always sufficient food to choose from at the dinner buffet. The television choices are not the best, though, and we were left with a dubbed episode of The A-Team (featuring that well-known 80s singer CowBoy George), and a circus from Monte Carlo, which I suspect was actually the world circus awards, or some such thing, which appeared to have a Brit win the top prize for being a lion tamer. I did not think you could get a job as one of those any more.
- Walk (Sassari, Sardinia) – 2.4 miles
- Para Fitness
- Swim – 15 laps – 1 hour 02 minutes 52 seconds
Tuesday 01 September 2015
We had less of a walk today as we visited the marina at Porto Cervo. I did enjoy two very healthy drinks while we were there.
You can see more photographs from Porto Cervo here.
Ready to train now the clouds have arrived
I did a Para Fitness session in the late afternoon, before doing another 15 laps in the pool in a time almost a minute faster again than the day before, which I was very pleased with. Maybe that speed was down to the melon, man.
The melon, the location…so good
We went out for another walk in the evening after the buffet dinner, and probably because we did not hang around to enjoy a funfair which seemed more at home on Craggy Island, we managed to get back in time to hear the covers band at the hotel poolside bar playing their version of Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here. Maybe we should have stayed at the funfair.
All the fun of the fear
- Walk (Porto Cervo, Sardinia) – 0.7 miles
- Para Fitness
- Swim – 15 laps – 1 hour 02 minutes 06 seconds
- Walk (Isola Rossa, Sardinia) – 1.4 miles – 35 minutes 27 seconds
Wednesday 02 September 2015
Fruit, fruit, more fruit, and a glass of fruit
After another healthy breakfast (healthy in content and healthy in size), the morning turned into a series of little walks. First, I managed to walk for half a mile just to spend half an hour exploring a brilliant nuraghe.
They hid it away
Then we took a walk for just over half a mile to reach a delightful little church on the coastline.
The inspiration for the Genesis song Church By The Sea
And finally we took a far too short walk around the very colourful Sante Teresa Gallura, where we stopped for a lunch which confirmed Debbie’s pizza tomato conspiracy.
A ham and cheese pizza
You can see more photographs of Nuraghe Tuttusoni here.
You can see more photographs of Vignola Mare here.
You can see more photographs of Sante Teresa Gallura here.
I did my Para Fitness session when we got back, although I did have to wait for the melon to arrive today. I was very pleased with my swimming as I took it up to 16 laps in the hour.
And finally a decent sunset
- Walk (Tuttosoni, Sardinia) – 0.5 miles – 24 minutes 24 seconds
- Walk (Vignola Mare, Sardinia) – 0.6 miles – 19 minutes 55 seconds
- Walk (Sante Teresa Gallura, Sardinia) – 1.2 miles
- Para Fitness
- Swim – 16 laps – 1 hour 3 minutes 50 seconds
Thursday 03 September 2015
A little something to get me up a mountain
The day I was looking forward to had arrived. If you have followed my blogs about my holidays you will know they tend to feature at least one mountain, and this holiday was not going to buck that trend. You can read more about the scaling of Punta Balistreri here.
On top of the mountain, and glad to get the bergen off
You can see more photographs from Punta Balistreri here.
When we got back from there I decided to take a longer walk along the coast from the hotel. It was probably a good move to get away from the hotel because I had seen a snake in the grounds. Whenever there was a wrong route to choose I took it, and ended up walking in shorts through all sorts of brambles and thorns, scratching my legs to bits.
A good walk across rough terrain
I had also gone out in the heat of the sun, and was getting through the water I had brought with me in no time at all.
You can see more of my photographs from the walk here.
It was good to get back to the hotel and go for my swim, and I put in a faster time than the day before, even though I was cramping in my feet and legs from lap 10 onwards.
Sunset over a deserted pool
It was the best sunset of the week so far. The buffet in the evening was full of traditional Sardinian food (including sardines, for the first time this holiday !).
Definitely my type of food
The covers band at the hotel poolside bar ran through the introductory section to Led Zeppelin’s Stairway To Heaven, Another Brick In The Wall from Pink Floyd, Walk Of Life by Dire Straits, Daytripper by The Beatles, Have You Ever Seen The Rain from Creedence Clearwater Revival, and Hotel California by The Eagles, before some folk dancers arrived from Aggius. This had definitely been an evening of entertainment for me.
- Walk (Punta Balistreri) – 3.3 miles – 1 hour 35 minutes 19 seconds (35lbs)
- Walk (Isola Rossa) – 5.6 miles – 2 hours 12 minutes 10 seconds
- Swim – 16 laps – 1 hour 02 minutes 06 seconds
Friday 04 September 2015
There was one more place I really wanted to visit before the holiday came to an end, Roccia dell’Elefante, and for a couple of reasons. First of all, I just love geological stuff like that, and second of all, because I had brought my Bad Elephant Music tshirt with me on holiday just in case a photo opportunity presented itself. And here was the perfect opportunity. From the right angle, it really does look like an elephant.
Badesi Elefante Musica
I also wanted to pay a proper visit to Valle della Luna (although I now think you need to be on the ground to fully appreciate it, and there does not appear to be a perfect vantage point to view it from above) and we got very lucky because of that as one road we found ourselves on took us past a most delightful church near Badesi.
Made out of marshmallow
You can see more photographs of Roccia dell’Elefante here.
You can see more photographs of the wonderful church in Badesi here.
It rained through the afternoon so we mostly stayed inside and packed.
A lovely evening to end on
The weather appeared to bring out a stunning sunset as the curtain began to come down on our holiday, and the dessert table was just asking to be visited.
Where do I start…and when do I finish ???
Saturday 05 September 2015
We travelled back to England and I drove back from Gatwick. I was in no fit state to then drive up to Catterick to take part in the Paras’ 10 on the Sunday, so I gave that a miss.
Sunday 06 September 2015
A lazy day. More to come next week.
Looking back at my week, it was the perfect environment for me to get back on track while taking the relaxing break that I very much needed. The heat was intense through the main part of the day, so we fitted in just as much as we could. The locals take a siesta for a reason !
Positives from this week – I got in a good number of Para Fitness sessions, my swimming improved each day, and we climbed a mountain.