Since I won my first World Championship gold medal in Zagreb I have had a love affair with Croatia which has resulted in me visiting for the last ten years.
I have been involved every year, usually the first weekend in May in the beautiful town of Split, as part of a selected bunch of ever older rowers for what is called “The Race of Legends”. Oxford and Cambridge alumni race against the older Croatian national team in Split harbour, regardless of weather conditions. I had a sinking experience one year, partly down to some of the “Legends” adding a few kilos in weight since there Oxbridge years of racing the 5000m Thames tideway course.
So how have I come to run a fitness camp here? In 2015 I decided that I wanted to go home refreshed from my weekend in Split. You get the special “Legend” call-up 2 weeks before the event, normally arriving on Friday night after a full days work and going straight to a drinks reception followed by a night out. This is the first of many drinks receptions, which leaves you feeling very unlegendary, by Monday morning.
Last year I decided it was time to enjoy Split for its culture and scenery, so my girlfriend and I hired a couple of bikes from Le MerdienLav hotel and headed down the coast road to Omis river. As we cycled up the valley our jaws dropped as we travelled further inland. The beauty of the small villages encased in the greens of the valley, trees and plants was amazing. With about 3 cars an hour on inland roads, the idea of a fitness camp featuring cycling as a daily activity sprung to mind. I also recall wondering where all the other cyclists were. Having run successful camps and taken part in Ironman competitions in Lanzarote and Mallorca, I was used to a constant stream of car and cycle traffic but not here. With this thought in mind I teamed up with Karmen Smith from Baba Grappa’s luxury bespoke holidays which made a perfect fit.
This years fitness camp was centred at the 5 star luxury Le MeridienLav hotel and featured some amazing highlights:-
Speed boat to Brac island with a guided tour from Mikjo.
Paddle boarding from Le MerdienLav hotel
A bucket list climb and van transfer with bikes to the base of the 1762 metre Su Deje.
Split sport star Nate, national finalist champion in basketball, swimming, triathlon and rowing led us up to the Observatory, only 20k from the hotel spa but what a view!
Finally, a guided tour from Mario around the seriously beautiful old town of Split where most areas date from 300AD.
A crossfit session from a very qualified Ante. He joined in coaching in a variety of morning sessions with run drills on the beach, pilates classes and body weight circuits. We also enjoyed a much needed stretch from Yoga guru Dee Opp.
Plus how could we forget the evening sunsets from the hotels’ champagne bar over looking the marina.
If you fancy discovering Split and getting fit along the way places are limited for 2017 so to secure please email firstname.lastname@example.org.