Well it's 6 months today sine I took my first dip in Bardowie Loch, so what has changed ? The water temperature for a start ! It has slowly crept up to a tropical 20 degrees. Since completing the 2 mile swim at Lake Windermere in June , there has been no stopping me. I have been training hard under Roberts watchful eye and encouragement at Bardowie Loch every Sunday morning and Pinkston on a Friday night and Saturday morning. Bardowie is a lovely place to swim - the scenery is amazing and I have managed to ditch the wetsuit a couple of times, but only if the water temperature is above 18 degrees! My fellow swimmers are so friendly , we are all passionate about open water swimming and it doesn't matter how fast you swim or how far you swim, it's about getting into the water and being relaxed and in you're own wee world where no one can interrupt you - that's what I love about swimming, you can totally switch off. Pinkston is a hidden gem - who would believe there is a 140 metre outdoor pool in the centre of Glasgow?
I have competed in four swims run by Vigour events. Bardowie, Luss, Loch Vennachar and Milarochy Bay. Each one has been very different but I have loved every one. Bardowie was great as I had swam there so often it felt like home. Luss was challenging, as was Loch Vennacher due to the conditions. The wind carried the marker buoys so the distance was a wee but further than expected. Millarochy Bay yesterday was lovely, despite getting totally lost on the way there! The water was lovely and calm and warm too. My next event is the Great Scottish swim at Loch Lomond, then in September I am hoping to complete 5k in Loch Ard. All the events have been very well organised by Robert and Kirstin. Lots of safety boats checking on you and making sure you don't go off course.
During the last six months I have had so much support from my family and friends and they know how much I love to be in the water. I have met so many lovely people, and have encouraged a few to join me in the water. I worked out today that since January I have managed to swim on average 10 miles every week - not bad considering in January I could only do 2 lengths front crawl!
However it is worth the 6.30 am starts - even at the weekends. Roll on New Year's Day for a long lie - although I overheard something today about a Ne'rday dip - can't think of a better way to start the New Year !