Red Clay! Training in Mallorca

I flew Monday from Helsinki via Berlin to Mallorca, Spain. Mallorca is an island (famously where Rafa Nadal grew up and still resides) about a 30 minute plane ride from Barcelona. The flights were fine though the terminal in Berlin was rather underwhelming…crowded and old. Each flight was in the two hour range; Helsinki was cold and rainy, Berlin sunny and mild, Mallorca sunny and very warm.

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I have been in Mallorca training on the red clay here for a few days before my next tournament. The transition from indoor hard courts to outdoor red clay is let’s say not an easy one, even though I love red clay. It’s much more physical to hit on red clay than indoors and then there are the interesting clay bounces, the wind, the sun and the different muscles used. It’s been fun though.

A college friend of mine is here too..she trained a couple of days and we walked around Palma Monday. The church here is always impressive to view.

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Yesterday we walked up to the Castle Bellver which overlooks the city. The view was beautiful but it was quite a hike up in between 90 minute hitting sessions. I’ll either be fit or exhausted next week..I choose fit!

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The biggest challenge here for me is parking. In the garage of my hotel, any car bigger than a minicooper seems like a Hummer…..people park here on the streets and must be expert parallel parkers (I am not!). The other challenge is finding my way around…I get there but sometimes the detours are comical and mean navigating streets only a few feet wide, occasionally going the wrong way on a one way street (yikes!…I blame the navigation system on that one).

Last day of training tomorrow then some sight seeing…then Barcelona awaits.

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