Water babies

You’re probably asking yourself: How can they eat such rich, delicious French food, and yet be in such fantastic shape? The answer (you might think) could be a rigorous program of bicycling up and down the hills of the Dordogne, each and every day, regardless of the weather.

Unfortunately, that’s not the case. (And definitely, for me, not the “fantastic shape” part either.) The reality is that I’m a fair-weather cyclist, and so this winter we started casting about for a fitness activity that would keep us  moving and flexible. What we’ve found is a program of aqua fitness (water aerobics, if you prefer) at a spa that’s about a 25-minute drive away, on the road to Gourdon. It’s called the Othentic Spa, and it looks like this:

Othentic Spa

A mix of old and new, the Othentic Spa.

We’ve already settled into a routine which, not incidentally, may well make us the spa’s first Elite clients. Each week I go for three sessions, while my wife has four. So we’ve become regular water babies, jumping, splashing, twisting, turning and running in a large pool with a bunch of other people.

What makes it all particularly good is that the pool is unusual by European standards — namely, the water is actually fairly warm, so you don’t feel you should be wearing an insulated wet suit. The pool itself is in the large, modern part of the structure, at the left of this photo. Nice, eh?

Spa with extension for pool.

The swimming pool is in the modern extension, at the left.

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