Gerard (Ger) O’Brien has never kayaked and is new to trail running but that didn’t stop the 32-year-old electrical engineer from signing up to the Quest Adventure Series taking place at Glendalough this weekend!
For the uninitiated, signing up to a Quest Adventure race means committing to a one-day, multi-sport event. Each race is broken up into Beginner, Sports & Expert categories and the Glendalough event starts at a 21km minimum, moving all the way up to an intimidating 59km monster. Ger has his sights set on the Sports Route: 43km of cycling, kayaking, and trail running with Wicklow as his stunning backdrop for the day’s gruelling activities.
“It’s all new to me, I want to do the best I can, enjoy myself [and the] experience and not break an ankle! That’s the plan!” he says, laughing, “We’ll see if I end up in the lake!”
A newbie to the Quest races, Ger first heard about the events through friends who had competed. The loyalty to these races is pretty intense and everyone he spoke to repeated the same core sound bite: the events are incredible, challenging, you won’t regret it and you’ll likely be hooked for life. He’s equal parts excited and nervous and his goal for the day is simple: “It’s all new to me, I want to do the best I can, enjoy myself [and the] experience and not break an ankle! That’s the plan!” he says, laughing, “We’ll see if I end up in the lake!”.
An avid cyclist, long-distance runner and frequenter of the gym, Ger was starting from a solid fitness base and has upped his regimen since registering about 7 weeks ago. His gym trainers have him focusing on strength training and mobility for his leg muscles in particular, and he’s taken on the Quest Sport Training Plan to help him prepare for this epic outdoor undertaking. Exposure to the elements and transitioning from cycle to run & back again are key facets to the event that this adventurer has been honing in on.
“We find the most epic environments in the world, and create the most unique and scenic races across them. We’ll take you to the edges of your physical ability, whatever level that is and we’ll take you on an adventure.”
And the Quest promise on the day? “We find the most epic environments in the world, and create the most unique and scenic races across them. We’ll take you to the edges of your physical ability, whatever level that is and we’ll take you on an adventure.”
Ger will have his girlfriend, Nicola Murphy, on hand Saturday to cheer him on and as Ger says, “Shouting at me to keep going!”, Though it doesn’t sound like Nicola will be on the sidelines for long; an accomplished cyclist herself, Ger is confident they’ll be tackling a Quest Adventure race together next year.
If you’re on the fence about whether to compete in one of these adventures yourself, or just want to see first-hand what it’s all about, come and join Ger, Nicola, and Gym+Coffee in Glendalough this Saturday, April 6th. We’ll be there cheering from the start & finish lines at this inspiring group of people who are out there achieving their goal to Make Life Richer!