Lyndsey and Russell Petrie are no strangers to the Kiltwalk.
Three years ago, Lyndsey tackled the 14-mile Big Stroll in Glasgow for Kiltwalk’s various charities – when she was five months pregnant.
Two years ago, she was joined on the 23 mile Mighty Stride in Glasgow by her husband Russell, raising funds for the Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity.
And this year, the couple are once again taking on the Mighty Stride to raise funds for the hospital charity, a cause which is now very close to their hearts.
For both their newborn children were treated by staff at the hospital.
Lyndsey explained: “When our daughter Anna was born, in August 2015, she had a virus and spent an hour or so in the neo-natal unit.
“We wanted to thank the staff for their superb treatment, which is why we both took on the Mighty Stride in April 2016.
“At that time we thought it was a one-off – we’d done the big one and wouldn’t be doing it again.”
However, when the latest addition to the Petrie family came along six months ago, it served to change their mind.
“Our six month old son Adam was 11 weeks premature,” said Lyndsey.
“He had to spend two and a half months in neo-natal care at the hospital.
“They did a really great job with Adam – the way the staff looked after him, they were all brilliant.
“Like all premature babies when they are born, Adam had chronic lung disease.
“But when he was just 48 hours old, he had a pneumothorax which meant he had to get life-saving intervention.
“His lungs are, therefore, a wee bit more damaged than they might otherwise have been and he’ll be monitored for a few years, with regular hospital check-ups.
“However, he’s doing fine now and is coming on leaps and bounds.”
During his extended hospital stay, the family could visit 24 hours a day.
And the Petrie’s wanted to thank staff for their support.
So they hit upon doing the Mighty Stride to raise funds for the hospital once again.
Lyndsey (35), a senior operations manager at BNP Paribas, and Russell (40), a vat operator at Chivas Regal, even asked guests at Adam’s recent christening to donate money to their cause.
Lyndsey said: “We asked all our family and friends not to give us gifts but, if they wanted, to donate to our fundraising page instead.
“Thanks to that, we’ve already raised £500 which is incredible – we’re very grateful for everyone’s support.
“But we’re not finished yet – by the time we cross the finish line in Balloch on Sunday, we hope to have raised more than £1000.”
Tartan will, of course, be the fashion statement of the day and Russell, who is originally from Milngavie and a former Douglas Academy pupil, will be wearing a kilt which is also extra special.
He’ll be wearing the Armstrong kilt which he wore to his graduation and on his wedding day.
As for Lyndsey? “I’ll just be wearing the most comfortable outfit I can find,” she laughed.
In terms of training, the couple have had little time to prepare for the Mighty Stride this time round.
It will see them walk a 23 mile route from Glasgow Green to the finish line at Moss O’ Balloch Park this Sunday, April 29.
However, the couple are determined to power their way to the finish line.
Lyndsey said: “I was five months pregnant when I did the 14 mile route and that was pretty challenging.
“And the Mighty Stride is pretty tough too – by the time you get to the 17 or 18 mile mark, it’s a bit of a struggle!
“We’ve not had any time to do any training either but we’ve done a lot of walking in the past so we’ll definitely finish it. I don’t know what state we’ll be in, mind you!”
Both sets of grandparents will be looking after the wee ones to allow Lyndsey and Russell, who now live in Lenzie, to focus on the day.
Lyndsey added: “They’ll be cheering us on from afar.
“Having a two year old and a six month old means we’re not getting a lot of sleep.
“It’ll be nice to spend time with each other and have a few uninterrupted conversations!
“We didn’t plan to do this so soon after baby number two but, given the circumstances, it felt like the right thing to do.
“It’s a brilliant event with great camaraderie – I’m most looking forward to the finish line though!”
If you would like to support the couple, visit https://glasgowkiltwalk2018.everydayhero.com/uk/lyndsey.
Still time to take part in 2018
Last year, more than 14,000 Scots took part in the Kiltwalk helping to raise more than £2.6 million for over 780 charities across Scotland.
Thanks to the extra 40 per cent from The Hunter Foundation, for every £100 raised by a walker, their chosen charity receives £140.
The first Kiltwalk of the year is in Glasgow on Sunday, April 29. The walk begins at Glasgow Green with Mighty Striders reaching the finish line some 23 miles away in Balloch.
To ensure there’s a walk for all ages and abilities, there’s also the 14-mile Big Stroll and the six-mile Wee Wander to choose from.
The Kiltwalk then heads to Aberdeen on June 3, with St Andrews to Dundee on August 19 and, lastly, takes to the streets of Edinburgh on Sunday, September 16.
Paul Cooney, chief executive of the Royal Bank of Scotland Kiltwalk, said: “We would like to thank everyone who is taking part or volunteering in any of the four Kiltwalks across Scotland this year.
“The Kiltwalk is such a special day; the atmosphere at the start line and along the route is full of joy and energy and it’s inspiring to see so many people coming together, united by the desire to raise money for charities close to their hearts.
“We want as many people as possible to experience this and as many charities as possible to benefit, especially with the extra 40 per cent top-up from Sir Tom Hunter.
“Helping to make the day such a success is our band of brilliant Kiltie volunteers who are placed along the route to hand out refreshments and cheer walkers on, adding to the feel-good factor.”
For more information about the Kiltwalk, to register to take part or to volunteer at any of the events, visit www.thekiltwalk.co.uk.