Joyce’s and Lidbury’s blog: numero dos

The second training blog from top pros Rachel Joyce and E-K Lidbury in the Canary Islands, with the 200km bike leg of Abu Dhabi looming into view...

The second training blog (read part one here) from top pros Rachel Joyce and E-K Lidbury in the Canary Islands, with the 200km bike leg of Abu Dhabi looming into view…

The past two weeks in Las Playitas have past in a blur of swimming, cycling, running, eating and sleeping. Not a bad thing given that we have the reality of a 200km bike leg in the Abu Dhabi International Triathlon looming on the horizon.

With our days marked out by reference to what is on our training schedules, our concept of time has gone a little haywire. It seems like most mornings the walk down to breakfast is spent trying to work out what day it is! Without a daily newspaper, or a dose of the morning news channels, we’ve become a little disconnected to the real world!
Emma-Kate and I aren’t the only ones who’ve chosen to prep for Abu Dhabi here at Las Playitas: other “Euros” out here include Dirk Bockel, Sylvia Felt, Andi Bocherei and Rasmus Henning (who’s based out here throughout the year).
This means that talk of long rides is pretty much the norm. However, the parameters of what counts as a long ride have become a little distorted. EK and I have notched up a fair few five plus hour rides and would both consider that a decent jaunt… but then over dinner you get told about nine hour rides and you begin to wonder?!
On particularly windy days it’s not unusual to see triathletes wandering around the buffet with a thousand mile stare and sporting a weather beaten look. But, hey, it’s all good prep for what could await us in Abu Dhabi!
So, we’ve been here long enough to come up with our top five things about staying in Las Playitas so here goes:
1.     1. Training is easy: For the past few weeks our training schedules have been pretty full with some days seeing us fit in up to four sessions a day. The fact that just about everything is never more than five minutes walk away means we can max out our recovery time between sessions(I.e. laying horizontal on bed, fully Compressport-ed out, usually sighing quite a lot).
2.     2. The Lighthouse Run: This run is hilly no doubt: the record for the 13km run is something like 50 odd minutes, which gives you some idea of the terrain! But the views out to the ocean and of the rugged Fueteventura coastline make the climbing worth it.
3. The Buffet!
We are buffet obsessed but, in our defence, when you’re battling 50kmph winds and can see your speed drop to below 10kph, visualising the evening buffet spread does wonders for morale. There’s always plenty of fresh fruit, salad and veggies, which goes some way to easing the conscience when perusing the dessert trolley!
4.     4. Training camaraderie: There’s no shortage of triathletes out here: both age groupers and pros and this creates a nice camaraderie. Whether it’s comparing stories of a day out in the saddle, or just sharing a “Yep, we’ve gotta dive in to the pool soon” look, there’s something nice about being surrounded by like minded people. Having said that, this can also come back and bite you! Last week word got out that our bikes had been seen by numerous persons parked up outside a particularly good patisserie for what was longer than required for a quick WC stop… doh!
5.     5. Time to chill: The facilities for training are fantastic but in addition Las Playitas enjoys a real holiday feel. On a free afternoon there’s nothing better than kicking back on a lounger next to the infinity pool, grabbing a cafe con leche and putting all thoughts of training and triathlon to one side for a while. More news from Las Playitas later this week.
Learn more about Playitas at
Visit Emma-Kate and Rachel’s websites, and, and for regular updates, follow them on Twitter: @eklidbury and @RJoyce09