Loch Ard 4,000m Swim

I must get back into the way of writing my blogs… I’ve taken a bit of a back seat with it lately… so I thought I’d write one today. All about my swimming and my swim today – 4,000m in Loch Ard.

After a few days with my Dad and Step Mum in the west coast and stopping over in Stonehaven before the journey home, and with good weather forecast today I figured I could take a detour and try out Loch Ard. About an hour or so from Glasgow I’d read it was a nice loch to swim in.

I stopped near the community hall and asked a local (Tom) if it was ok to park near his house and he said I could. I wasn’t sure where best to park but he said as long as I tucked in and was careful it was fine. I was in swimming for about just before 12, in my newish thermal wetsuit.

Before I went in, I checked and my turtle thermometer said it was 17’C but that must have been in the shallows as it was about 14’C when I was out swimming. I wore my cap and goggles, and my neoprene socks for warmth. I didn’t need my gloves thankfully. It wasn’t all that cold really.

I let the water in my wetsuit and paddled out a bit, then warmed up with about 500m. My Garmin swim 2 watch is set to lap every 250m, so I swam for two intervals before taking a quick break before I headed off along the loch. It was a bit shallow in parts, but I did well to swim another 1,500m in what felt like record time. Each 250m was ticking off in under 4 minutes so there must have been a current helping me along.

I swam towards an island, and after 1,500m figured I’d better start to head back. Of course that seemed to be a bit into the current, and I after another bit of a swim I got a little disorientated. I was looking for the house I’d parked my car at, and eventually saw the community hall next to it. So I headed for that.

My watch ticked off an hour and I was feeling good… I kept swimming some more, trying to sight for the community hall. I was still feeling good at 3,500m, then I swam my last 500m into shore and got out.

As I got out a woman spoke to me and asked me a few things about my swim, asking how long I’d been doing it for. She was keen to start but hadn’t plucked up the courage. I said I’ve been swimming for 20 odd years, but really only started open water swimming in the last year.

Then I realised, it was this time last year at the start of June that I dipped my toe and wetsuit in Loch Ness with the lovely Pennie. and in a year I’ll have swim 316,000 meters – 316km or about 196 miles! (With another 2,900m left to swim on Tuesday).

Today was my longest open water swim and it’s a good confidence builder ahead of my 2 x 3,000m and one 5,000m events in September / October. I hope to get out in lochs maybe very second Sunday or so up to then.

Here’s my monthly totals for the year.

After my swim today I got dried fine in the warm sun, before drinking some water and eating some crisps and a small mars bar.

Then on my way home I stopped at Carbeth at the takeaway cafe… and bought myself some banana bread and coke.

It was just what I needed. (not the lump in my wetsuit is my waterproof Fuji camera down my front).

A good wee day out and detour away from the A9 / M8 home. I ended up getting home around 3pm and dried all my gear out and got my car washed and hoovered ahead of next week.

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