One month on, we asked our brilliant MAD Clyde challengers to reflect on their experiences of the event. This is what they had to say…
“Shall we print out a map?”
“Nah, it’ll be fine.”
Sitting in our local coffee shop, pastry in hand and making use of the complimentary Wi-Fi, we were happily oblivious to our upcoming challenge. Ten days earlier we had signed up for MAD Challenges’ MAD Clyde event. Having chosen the middle option – 19 miles in 6 hours – we reasoned that we would be adequately prepared without much training. After all, we weren’t doing the insane MAD Master – 35 miles in 12 hours – we’d be fine.
Or so we thought.
Factoring in the added weight of 6kg and the time-frame you can see why this is called a MAD Challenge. Three miles an hour is a reasonable walking pace but try maintaining it solidly for 6 hours!
“Shall we head home and get some lunch?”
Another strange factor was that we were setting off on a 19-mile walk at 3pm. In order to be able to meet the MAD Masters (those crazy 35-mile-ers) who set off at 9am, we were required to start at what would usually be considered ‘a little late in the day’ for a six hour walk.
Let’s rewind a little, to the day we signed up. Having chosen the MAD Mover option (and blister-free feet and sanity over glory) we next had to create our campaign page. MAD Challenges works with the wonderful Do-Nation, to allow sponsorship in the form of action rather than money – because reducing waste and our impact on the environment is something everyone can contribute to.
We dutifully arrived at the Strathclyde Park start point and met our fellow MAD Movers – ready and raring to go! The lovely organisers had prepared our extra weight, and we were each loaded up with 6kg worth of River Clyde water (this water’s not for drinking!). The sun was out, spirits high, and after a team photo, we were off.
We set a blistering (literally) pace which we hoped to maintain for the rest of the day. The MAD Masters group joined us shortly and having already walked 16 miles, they were beginning to flag but I like to think we brought some renewed enthusiasm to the challenge. And the fact they had already walked almost as far as we were going to be walking gave me a lot of confidence – thanks guys!
I’ll not say much about the next six hours – we walked, we talked, we shared laughter, snacks, music and suncream (and the best flapjack I’ve ever eaten) and saw each other at our best and our worst. We kept each other going and though we may have lost a little River Clyde water along the way, we made it to the finish line.
And damn, that cold beer tasted good.
Imogen Beck & Grant Laird
‘As soon as I heard about MAD Challenges at the 2050 Climate Summit in November 2016 I knew it was for me. Outdoor challenges with friends while getting to raise awareness about sustainability = best combination! It was a cracking day and great to see people engaging with the challenge. I can tell it’s only going to grow from here!’
‘I would absolutely encourage others to participate in future MAD Challenges events. They offer a real challenge and the chance to meet great people who have a genuine interest in environmental issues and how we can work together to combat them’
‘MAD Clyde was an amazing experience. It pushed me to my mental and physical limits but knowing that friends and family had pledged over 700kg of carbon saving for my walk more than made up for it’