Cycled home on a high then (without even a shower, what a minger) jumped into the Berlingo for a chatty run at Gullane with Mary. (We hardly see each other Monday~Friday!) We sat cowering in the car park in a warm car cursing the frigid wind wondering how the hell we were going to run never mind swim in the glacial conditions down on the beach. After cranking ourselves up a bit we set off and it wasn't so bad once you got going.
Who lives here?
It should really be Michael Gooeg(h)e(g)en but it isn't. As we ran past the big white house in the centre of the above image there was a knocking on the window and Lucy and Amanda smiling and waving. Lucy's new (temporary) gaff, having sold her place in NB. We went in for a coffee then stole AGF along for the run. She has been recovering from some new year bugs but was able to come along for a gentle jog along to Aberlady and back (but not for the swim.) It was great to catch up and completely unplanned: we hadn't even realised Lucy's new address.
I know - these Huaka road shoes look like the ugliest colour combo ever. However since they were sent from Hoka's marketing people free of charge I think they are rather handsome. Well they will be when I give them a re-spray. There will be a review in due course.
Note: not many swimmers.
By the time we had run (and waved Amanda off) we were less horrified about the prospect of a swim. The air temperature was just about 2 or 3 degrees and the water was between 3 and 4. This is about the temp of your fridge so imagine leaving a bowl of water overnight in your fridge then putting your face in it. Yup, fresh.
You can see my tail wagging.
The new gloves, socks and hood work very well in keeping the cold at bay. I can walk out to waist deep before any water has touched my skin, then slowly the water trickles in through the zip of the wetsuit. It takes a bit of jumping about to get an all over covering which warms with body temperature, and after that it is only the lower half of your face that has to deal with the wintry waters. I turned around to see how Mary-doll was doing but she was already stroking down the beach. I put my face in the water but couldn't keep it there for more than 20 secs as it felt like ice cream on my front teeth. Ouchy. I had to do a bit of back stroke and breast stroke while my teeth recovered. It made me realise I swim with my mouth a bit open and while I have become accustomed to the salt water taste I had to try to swim with my lips shut which felt weird. I tried to get my face used to the cold while taking selfies just slightly under the surface.
loving the fat slug forehead look
As always the really unpleasant bit is stripping off in the cark park afterwards - standing in soaking wet running shorts with bare feet chilling on the permafrost ground, before clambering into dry clothes and the warm car. About 8 minutes of hell and just awful, it doesn't get any easier. (I quite enjoy the swim by comparison.) We were both furiously hungry and yet still had quite a lot to do with the day (shopping x 2) so we started by going to Chez Tesco a lovely restaurant in Musselburgh with a romantic ambience. The macaroni cheese is not quite up to the Cal-Mac standard but Mary's Ham and Eggs looked pretty good.
This gave us the strength for the weekly shop, followed by a trip to the bike shop where Mary's number 2 (back to number 1) bike had spent it's christmas holidays. And where I spent a small fortune on new bike accessories and a new helmet. While we had a great and busy time it was not ideal preparation for the race next morning.