Lanzarote Testimonial - Andy Greenwood
Sporting interests: Athletics, Triathlon, Rugby, Football, Cricket.
What were your aims before the trip?: My aim was to use the trip as a heavy week of training to prepare for the upcoming London marathon and triathlon season, meet others in the club and enjoy some training in the sun and away from the England winter.
Did you fulfil your aims?: Yes...even the last one despite the odd rain cloud.
Were you able to train with other Serpies of similar standard?: There were Serpies at every level, and I was able to find a few at one similar to mine.
Were there a sufficient variety of sessions available to take part in?: Yes - it was great to be able to swim in the morning and then get on with a long cycle during the day before an evening run, and the variety is such that you can mixing speed, tempo, moderate and recovery sessions for each discipline across the week.
What were the facilities like at Club La Santa? What were the scope of the run/cycle routes around the island?: Overall the facilities at La Santa are excellent.
The apartments are basic but adequate and better than many of the reviews describe on Trip Advisor.
The pool and track were both of a high standard. Whilst I'd hate to imagine staying there at peak season, the time of year that the Serpies go means you rarely have to book for equipment much ahead of time save for the road bikes, and the Serpentine club has pre-booked swim lanes for the morning and evening so it's never crowded in the pool.
I did enjoy running in the surrounding hills and the roads are well sealed for longer rides across the island too.
Was there any opportunity to do other sports apart from running/swimming/cycling?: La Santa has its own programme of activity which provided variation and supporting training options to the usual swim/bike/run. I made good use of the Pilates and stretch classes but they have all the ‘Les Mills' combat, step and pump classes available across the day too, and a well equipped gym.
One suggestion for next time - I'd love to see a Serpie non-triathlon discipline competition on the last day such as a beach volleyball tournament.
What were the restaurants and food like at Club La Santa?: We mixed eating in the apartment and out in the restaurant.
Some may say the La Santa supermarket is overpriced. I didn't, and not a major difference from the one in the town a couple of kilometres away - the foods that represented poor value were mainly the imported English-branded ones so if you can decipher pasta sauce on the Spanish label, you'll be fine.
Where we ate at the restaurants the food was average but filled a gap. But it is worth the trip to head outside the resort to the nearby town for a couple of evening meals.
What sort of activities were you able to do in the evenings?: It was always great to have a meal or enjoy a drink at the bar and get to meet new Serpies in the evenings. And the first and last night dinners were great entertainment.
Did you get to know many other Serpies that you had not met before?: Yes - everyone was quite welcoming, even if a little tired at the end of the day!
Would you have any tips for anyone going on the trip for the first time?: The local supermarket is fairly well stocked with the basics, but bring a good variety of snacks and your usual gels and magic powders to save money - and anyway there's no guarantee it will have your preferred brand.
Can you sum up your Club La Santa experience in one sentence?: A great time was had by all!