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Training in Flanders with Decroix.

123by Lieselot Decroix

For some cyclists, travelling around the world from one race to another is one of the disadvantages of the job. For me, however, travelling is a big advantage of being a cyclist. You race in different places and you see different parts of the world.

Every time I have to pack my suitcase for a race, I am excited to go again! But since Omloop Het Nieuwsblad, I’ve spent almost a month in Belgium. Yes, an entire month in my home country! And being at home doesn’t mean peace and quiet, but a hectic life. I go training, and before or after training I go to university or I study.

1234But what I wanted to talk about was the fact that I was training in Belgium again. For some people, Flanders is a paradise to ride your bike, but for me it isn’t. Most of the roads are made of “brick” or cobbles. Every cyclist will know what I am talking about: “kudum…kudum…kudum…kudum…and then…krrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr…” The strong wind, rain and clouds make the Belgian picture complete. Don’t think that I am complaining, because it makes you strong!

Why do you think most cyclists who get the nickname “Flandrien” are Belgian? I am definitely not a Flandrien, but I admit that I’ve only become stronger after training in these harsh conditions. And…it makes me appreciate it when I can go ride and race in other countries, where it’s warm, sunny, and hilly and where the roads are nice and smooth!!

But not everyone is like me. Last night Dominique Rollin wrote on his Facebook: “@Belgium, 3 weeks of cold, wind and rain, I hope!” Well, Dominique…I don’t hope it! Maybe I should suggest to him that we do a house exchange for a couple of weeks. He can live in my place in Belgium and I will go to his place in Girona. ;-)

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