Tri Alliance Pre-Season Apollo Bay Camp
The final Tri Alliance training camp for 2012 was held over the weekend of 22-23rd of September with 45 brave athletes venturing down the Great Ocean Rd to Apollo Bay. An epic weekend of training and events was planned and to our delight there were signs of spring weather ahead. We were lucky enough to have Level 3 Triathlon and VIS assistant coach Jarrod Evans heading up the camp in which he provided some great insight into high performance coaching and training.
The camp kicked off on Friday for those lucky enough to snag the day off work and shortly after lunch was an easy 40-50km spin on the bikes. The wind was gruelling at times as some got a taste of what was to come over the coming two days. Upon return the keys were dispatched and our recovery venues for the weekend all set. Some ended up in what we would call Rolls Royce accommodation whilst others had to settle for a Datsun. This didn’t seem to phase anyone as the only time spent in the room was to sleep and keep all the precious training gear. A run was accomplished in the afternoon with athlete’s completing anywhere between 6-14km. A quick bite to eat, athlete briefings, camp show bags were handed out and it was off to bed to prepare for the coming days. Big thanks to our fantastic partners Shotz Sports Nutrition and Rocket Science Sports for again providing us with their great products for the camp.
Saturday morning brought with it fantastic clear skies and not a breathe of wind. The sun was rising, the ocean was a milk pond and these are the types of days, which make riding an absolute pleasure no matter how much you’re hurting. The rides ahead were anything ranging from 60km-150km. All athletes headed towards Lorne with some venturing out and around the Skeen’s Creek loop whilst others enjoyed the great views that were on offer on the Great Ocean road, not once but twice as they made their way back to the Apollo Bay headquarters. Upon the return the wind grew slightly however the day was spectacular at around 18 degrees. In came the bikes and on went the runners for a run straight off the bike. This camp was different in that there was no down time to allow the legs to rest; it was straight onto the pavement to punch out a run. Some found they had pushed it too hard on the bike and had to cut their runs short however our Ironman guys lead by example by completing a half marathon – Yes 21.1km run following a tough 150km bike ride!! A few braved the cold water and opted for an afternoon swim to test out some of the fantastic Rocket Science Wetsuits. The water would have been lucky to be 13 degrees but we breed them tough at Tri Alliance! Saturday night’s group dinner was held at the Apollo Bay Hotel for a well deserved feeding frenzy. Chicken parama’s was a usual suspect on most tables however some opted for Solid hit of red meat in a steak. Either way the protein was out in force with most trying to fit in as much food as they could. Ride briefings followed and home we all went to prepare to do it all again.
Sunday’s weather forecast was always looking bleak and the wind and rain had set in overnight. The ride would head in the opposite direction on this occasion which would see athletes head out to Lavers Hill. For anyone who has done this ride before you would know it is tough! However with hectic conditions Mother Nature had handed us, this ride was going to be extreme and a true test of character. VIS coach Jarrod Evans said of the ride “everyone who rode today deserved a pat on the back. That was one tough day, Great group of people”. A true character building ride and a testament of how powerful the mind is and most importantly how hardcore we TA athletes are!! No one who departed for Lavers Hill returned dry nor warm and the camp had truly lived up to its hype. A few opted to cut their ride short but there was a handful who weren’t going to let the atrocious conditions get the better of them and completed the 95km trek. To our delight the sun begun to become visible on the return and again we put on the runners and headed out for another 4km-18km of running.
All in all another very successful camp and a big congratulations to our camp first timers who all put in a fantastic effort. One first timer, who will not remain nameless and in this case deserves a mention. Tania Darvell triathlete all of 6 weeks decided 40k winds, rain, hail or shine (and all of the above occurred) she would get herself up to Lavers Hill and home. As she battled against mind and body Jarrod Evans was completely awestruck by this girl. As he said, “Since 1996 Ive probably seen 5 things in my coaching life that have amazed me about what people are capable of and today i saw another one. A beginner in the sport for only 6 weeks, today i watched Tania Darvell, put up with rain, hail, sun and shit to ride 100 of the the hardest kms you can do on a bike from Apollo Bay to Lavers Hill and Back, taking about 5.5hrs”. So impressed was Jarrod that he tailed Tania all the way up Lavers and all the way down and at times did not have his foot on the accelerator it was a slow commute. Now Tania, we know how tough you are on yourself so that’s not an insult it just goes to show how strong the wind was!!! It also needs to be noted that Tania then got off the bike and headed out alone on her run completing the assigned km’s.
At the end of day 3 athletes were exhausted and hungry and had a long drive ahead to reach home. At this point it becomes a blur as we all scrambled to pack our gear into cars before hitting the road. Whilst some athletes opted to head off quickly others met up with coach Emma at a local café to caffeine and carb load before heading off. This is a great part of camps when as coaches we get to see the smiles and proud faces of our athletes as they share their achievements all of which are hugely significant.
- The Apollo Bay hotel does not take orders before 6pm not 5.50pm or 5.55pm
- A 6.30am roll out means 6.29 & 30 seconds unless Emma is involved
- Know where you’re going because 150k’s is a lot more than 130k’s – Kerry W and co.
- Never, Never, Never, give your warm clothes to the sag wagon – The Otways “Sunny one minute hailing the next”
- “Keep Going” was Brianna L’s motto, she should have shared it with Dave G as he returned home from the ride Sunday to discover he was a mere 2ks from the top of Lavers Hill!!!
Items Lost and Found:
- 1 pair of black thongs – at the beach
- 1 green drink bottle – at the pub
- 1 TO Speed glove – Ride day 2
- 1 pair of Briko Sunnies – Lavers Hill
- 1 set of keys – at the beach
- 1 pair of Speedos – Left in the shower at Montrose St
Important Things to Note:
Sonia Greguol completed her longest ever ride on day 1 at the camp and had these two poignant comments to make:
1. Although the Great Ocean Road runs alongside the beach, just like Beach Rd….. that’s where the similarity ends!
2. Oh and it’s funny how Voltaren at a pre-season training camp has an allure much like that of ecstasy at a rave!!!
“Listen to my body, trust my training, aim for a little higher”
“Death before dishonour”