Meet Gareth Russell, the Business Development Manager at ABP Humber…who, in his spare time , loves to take his CatZero fund-raising efforts to new heights! And he picked our tenth anniversary year to do just that – taking part in The Ben Nevis Braveheart Triathlon. And what a success, raising thousands so far, and with your help there is still time to raise some more. In this blog for our website, Gareth charts his adventure…
“I’m pleased to say that I did it and managed to get back to the Humber in one piece – with three blisters, two very sore legs and one less toe nail!
It was the toughest thing I have ever done mostly due to the atrocious weather we experienced. The early morning swim in Loch Linnhe was cold (as expected) and very choppy (I think I drank half the loch!). Little did I know then that was the warmest that I was going to feel all day. I exited the water and into Transition 1 in 29th place.
Both my transitions (swim to bike and bike to run) were slow due to having totally numb hands and feet.
The out and back bike leg with elevation gain of 2,200 feet was very wet and very windy. The strong head wind on the return numbed my entire body, but I got my head down, grit my (chattering) teeth and hammered round in 2hrs 33mins (averaging 22mph over the 56 mile course – a PB for me) and now in 35th place.
Then onto the mountain run, which can only be described as brutal with heavy rain, an icy gale and some serious gusts. I was actually quite relieved when they turned us round before the summit on safety grounds (100mph gusts on top!). I got my second wind after the turn and literally flew down “The Ben” – 8th fastest for this leg and only 14 mins slower than the eventual winner.
So a total time of 4hrs 41mins put me in 15th place overall (14th if you exclude the relay teams but who’s counting!) and 4th in my category (Male Veterans aged 40-50).
Would I do it again? Absolutely – but only on a warm and windless day!”
Help Gareth raise more money: www.virginmoneygiving.com/garethrussell
For more details on the challenge tackled by Gareth, go to www.bravehearttri.com