Can’t quite make that image out. Guess the actual temperature…! Try another:
Now that’s definitely an ice bath. Maybe not for the faint-hearted. However, some of Nordic/Russian guests have been complaining that there is no snow here in the Algarve to roll in when they come out of the sauna, and that the plunge pool, being part of the main swimming-pool water-circulation system, is too warm. Also, some more athletic types like to use an ice bath after strenuous workouts in the gym… just as UK tennis star Andy Murray values an ice bath after a difficult match. It’s quite common, even though it may sound fearsome to some! We’ve used one when training with our Chinese/US martial arts friends, and even a couple of times done some lake swimming with the lake partially iced over. All in the books…
So, with half of the vacation complex briefly handed back to contractors for ‘snagging’ and refurbishment/maintenance after the first season, we had the opportunity to get a new ice-bath installed between the sauna and the gym. It’s open-air, and basically a six-foot deep thermally insulated square tank into which four people can fit comfortably, fitted with a water purification and circulating system which chills to around 1C / 34F. An adjacent industrial ice-cube machine allows bucketfulls of ice cubes to be thrown in – more for effect, really. There is a ladder up the full height of one inside wall, and various handholds which you can used to counter buoyancy if you need to.
Maybe that’s enough icy pictures – let’s warm up…
So we tried the new set-up this morning – Dave, Zach and I – alongside Alfredo and Seb and three of the pool staff, two local guys (friends of Alfredo/Seb) and one girl. Baking sauna first, Finnish style, birch twigs (we had them delivered for the Russians!) and then, four at a time, jump straight in from the surrounding platform. Zach, Dave, me and Seb first, Alfredo holding back a little (shame!!) and then the others. After which the surrounding breeze (around only 12C) felt quite warm. ‘Run?’ Of course.
I think that it will be surprisingly popular… the in-depth warm-up in the sauna first will definitely be routine, I think, for us!
…except that I don’t expect any pink shorts to be worn here… this is the ‘clothes-optional’ and adult side of the camp!
More ‘warm’ pictures, albeit with a shower to begin:
Ah… memories of summer! Daytime max here in eastern Algarve about 15c now (59F) but still mainly sunny, so shirts can still be off, at least for a while…
He doesn’t look too happy, does he? And the lush vegetation is a clue that he isn’t in our neighbourhood either… still looking pretty dried up here despite some rain now and again.
Shirts definitely off in the gym of course, even on the ‘family’ side which is all that is open to guests right now: clothes-free periods that side are limited, so we’ll let our remaining gym-bunny models keep their shorts on:
One more picture to go to make up our regular 20. before that, my quick reminder that I can solve your Christmas prezzie problems by recommending this quick read: an outcast boy troubled by his sexuality sets out he knows not where in search of he knows not what… but his true love is out there, somewhere, waiting…
…clicking on the cover will lead you to the publisher’s ‘buy’ button, and it is also available in all of the other ways (Amazon, e-book, etc. etc.).
OK. Finally for today, here’s an interesting photographic ‘take’ on Karl’s bicep curl. If only I knew how to compose images like this!