It’s great to do something new and exciting and get that feeling I have not had for many years of achieving something I didn’t think possible and exceeding my own expectations.
We have experienced nature in a new way, seen, touched, felt and sometimes unfortunately tasted it. Loch Gu Loch was an outstanding experience that not only challenged me and my exceptionally able team mate Bonnie physically but opened our eyes the nature that we have right here on our doorstep.
We enjoyed the whole race and great atmosphere, weather, competition, support and company throughout the event made it seem short. Our personal target was top 3 mixed and a fun day out. We somehow ended up in a race for a top 3 place and finished 1st.
When Bonnie started racing the mens teams I told her not to think about it and when they came past reminded her anything could happen and we should just focus on our own race. While we knew the men would be faster on the hilly long run and the steep final section to the top from Loch Tarff we knew from experience that many things can go wrong for anyone from a fall to a navigation error and change a race completely. More than once I said I bet they will have missed that navigation sign.
Ultimately the fact the leading team went off course may have changed the overall result, it is a bad way to end and we feel gutted for Stuart and Chris especially as we know they would have been in a whole world of pain out there. However Bonnie had the bit between her teeth and was chasing hard to beat the men when we heard we were catching them. She hates running up hill but LOVES running down it seems and I felt even a 5min gap on the final swim would have done it.
Were asked many times what our highs and lows were.
For me (Bonnie will have different answers of course) the low was feeling so cold with blurry vision and uncoordinated legs after Loch Mhor, that I fell twice and had to walk off a fairly painful bruised and cut knee for some time.
For those wondering why the top loch was colder than Loch Ness it is part of the Foyers hydro scheme and is filled with water pumped up from deeper under the surface of Lochness. Generally I found the extreme temperature changes int he second half really hard.
In terms of highs, apart from the obvious finishing and winning I think we are both just pleased to have been part of such a great event and have had the experience of swimming and running with some great guys out there. Stuart Reid will tell you it was when I caught the Cal Mac ferry across Loch Duntelchaig, aka, I got on his big yellow feet and hardly had to pull the water for 20min.
Thanks to all the LGL team and crew an epic achievement and thanks for bringing this event to Scotland, see you again!