Tour de France (Rest Day 2)

The second rest day certainly comes with a touch more optimism. We are 
further south, the sun is shining, and Paris seems close, but yet so
 far. There is far more of a buzz around the hotel but that may have
 something to do with sharing our accommodation with two other teams, 
and possibly the humming of cars from the motorway which is less than
 1km away.

Week two of this years tour has been thankfully less dramatic than the 
first one, it couldn’t not have been really. Knock on wood nobody
 really touched down this week so it’s been a case of keeping things
 steady and on top of even the smallest of issues, discomforts or hints 
of injury.

As we approach week two and three of the tour small 
problems can become big problems quickly, as the fatigue sets in and
 the immune system typically starts to wane.

The great news is that pretty much across the board everyone seems to
 have hit the slot this week, the reason being I believe as their
 bodies begin to get used to the rigors of the race and the body
 adapts. What we end up with is athletes biomechanically stronger this
 week than last and hopefully next week  stronger still. So on the
 contrary to what may be expected I have had slightly less to do this
 week but then again not crashing definitely helps.

The high of the week was definitely Thor’s win into Lourdes, clinical,
 calculating, efficient and executed to perfection. Earlier in the 
stage while waiting at the finish, John the physio and I headed to Le
Grotto in Lourdes an interesting if very sad place as I have never 
seen so many sick, unwell or disabled people in one place. Very 
moving, as I assumed they are all there for their own miracle.

As we
 entered the church, John walked up to me, I asked him where he had
 been. “Just lit a candle for Thor to win today” (there was still 90km
 to go). I wouldn’t say Thor’s win was a miracle, but it certainly one 
of the most dedicated sporting performances of the year as I see it. 
Rewind the night before, Thor came to see me, he had been a little
 fatigued a few days previously and rightly so due to his first week’s 

I took a look and picked up from the previous treatment and
 things we had been working on, I spent some time to check for any
 biomechanical weakness, stiffness, or muscle inhibition, this time
 there was nothing. I said “I really cannot find anything wrong at all, 
everything is perfect, there is nothing to treat, things should feel 
good pretty quickly with any luck maybe tomorrow…”, “Good, Thanks.” came
 the reply, and off he went.

Knowing when to leave well alone and let 
the body get on with it is as much part of the plan as knowing when to
 get stuck in and treat. The next day, as Christian put it, he put on a
 “cycling masterclass”.

So with one week still remaining a lot can happen, motivation is still 
high, team spirit is buoyant and time has flown by, definitely a sign
 of having fun. The real fun can start when business has been taken
 care of when they cross the line on the Champs-Élysées, hopefully with
 Tyler being the first one to do so, putting the icing firmly on top 
of the cake.

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