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The Rabobank team on the North Sea during a pre-season training camp.
Niermann fights boredom, over-eating and lack of physical activity
While Saxo Bank climbed the mountains on Fuertaventura at their team training camp, Rabobank took a different approach when they sent their riders on a ship to explore the waters around the North Sea.
However despite the novel idea the main activities the riders had to endure were boredom, overeating and a lack of exercise.
"If we’d had a hurricane it might have been an exciting adventure, but unfortunately we had so little wind that we had to turn the motors on in order to move at all," said veteran rider Grischa Niermann.
"Other than that we had the difficult task of cooking for our masseurs and mechanics and trying to kill time the rest of the day," the German continued. "The result: In three days I gained what feels like two kilos and by my first training ride at home I had cramps because I had barely moved in so long."
Going into the team adventure, Niermann had expected something entirely different. The riders had only been told that their "activity" would start at 11 am on a Wednesday and stop at noon Friday. "Sounds a little like a two-day march through mud, without sleeping, eating or any other luxuries," he had written in anticipation.
"I hope that our team outing next year will be a bit more spectacular," the 34-year-old concluded.