Zoe De Toledo Talks Rowing Training Camp Essentials

I am currently 3 days in to a 3 week training camp in Breisach, Germany, in preparation for the 2015 World Rowing Championships. From here we have a precious 40 odd hours at home before jetting off again to Varese, Italy for 10 days, followed by a direct transfer to the World’s venue in Aiguebelette, France.

Personally, I find that with this much time away from home I need some of my creature comforts available to me. As a chronic over-packer I won’t bore you an in-depth list of everything I bring with me, but I will fill you in on a couple of my training camp essentials…

Tea and Kettle

yorkshire-teaYou know what? I’ve totally had it with those pesky travel kettles. They take 3 million years to boil, and then make barely one decent sized cup of tea. This year I’ve been bold and bought a full sized kettle with me. Haters gonna hate, and I’m going to drink my tea. All 110 bags at the rate I’m currently going too… British tea is just plain better, not going to rely on the Germans for my Yorkshire fix, that’s for sure.



I love food, more than life itself sometimes, but have to keep a little eye on the weight around racing time. So whilst I would love to be filling up on crisps and ice cream, I’m opting instead for slightly more nutritious snacks, particularly dried fruit and nut combos, plus my little Graze box treats (that I have been stockpiling for the last 6 weeks…). Mind you I did also manage to pack in a kilo of Turkish Delight that my Dad brought make from Istanbul, but that is predominantly going to be used to bribe my crewmates. And it’s the food of my people, so I’m rolling with it. On the subject of crewmates and snacks, the lovely ladies bought me a beautiful new wash bag for my birthday to replace my “skanky” old one, but it wasn’t big enough for all my toiletry crap so I have filled it with food instead…oops.

Power Strip

power stripMy room looks like a hardware store sometimes, what with cox-box, stroke coach, phone, Garmin watch and lap-top chargers, plus of course the aforementioned kettle, the power strip is a lifesaver.

Plus, hotel rooms never have enough damn plug sockets.


chilliLet’s face it, camp food can be disappointingly bland at times (although some of ourtraining venues are amazing — big shout out to Aviz Aqcua, Portugal). We are spoilt at home by the presence of our incredible chef Omar, so some extra condiments are a good way to spice up your meals. A Breisach favourite for myself and my stroke seat Zoe Lee is Willi’s Chilli Pepper Sauce, although we have branched out this camp and added a delightful dark beer BBQ sauce as well (a steal at only €1:29!)

Other important additions include my furry friends Pengy and Hooty McOwl Face, Cards Against Humanity for delightfully un-PC fun, plus a silly amount of books (mostly on my trusty Kindle, any recommendations gladly received!).

What are your training camp essentials?

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