IT was upon visiting a department store to shop for some new clothes that Louise Renicks realised her life had changed dramatically over the course of just a matter of weeks.

"I went in to get a new pair of trousers for one of the events we were going to," she reveals. "I was in the changing room when I overheard a woman saying, 'that's one of those sisters that won gold'. I made sure the curtains were shut properly after that! Normally you don't need to think about these things."

Renicks, and the afore-mentioned sister, Kimberley, were two of the stars of the Commonwealth Games, the pair winning judo gold medals within an hour of each other on the opening day of the competition. From the relative obscurity of being recognised only by judo enthusiasts or out and about in their hometown of Coatbridge, it seemed everybody wanted a piece of the Renicks and the medals that accompanied them everywhere.

They were invited to Celtic Park, Ibrox and Cliftonhill, home of local heroes Albion Rovers, attended gala dinners, made radio and television appearances, visited countless schools, and committed to all manner of other engagements. Such was their hectic schedule that it started to become more exhausting shaking hands and agreeing to selfies than it was to compete on the judo mat.

"We fought on July 24 and we've not stopped from the 25th onwards," said 32-year-old Louise, the elder of the two siblings. "Ten weeks later and we've had maybe two days where we've done nothing, and even then we've been trying to catch up with things like housework and paperwork. It has been life-changing in a lot of ways.

"The reaction from everyone we've met has been incredible, in our local area but beyond that as well. We've been to football games and rugby games, events run by Judo Scotland and seen lots of kids as well. It's all been really good. I've been educated a lot as well and almost overwhelmed by the welcome and the reception we've had.

"You get tired, and I've had to adapt my training programme as a result of all these extra things, and I feel a bit run down now. But I wouldn't have it any other way. Things will go back to normal soon enough and I'll be wishing I was getting more attention!"

A shiny gold Commonwealth medal has become a useful prop in helping children see that their own dreams can be fulfilled if they show similar levels of diligence and determination.

"We've visited something like 25 schools, sharing the Games experiences with the kids and letting them know that, whatever they put their mind to, they can achieve," said Renicks. "So you can see you're inspiring them a little bit. I've been surprised by how much feedback and stories the kids can give you from what they saw during the Games. They tell you how proud they are and that's overwhelming. But you tell them in return that if they put the hard work in then they can do just about anything themselves."

Elite judo returns to Glasgow this weekend in the form of the women's European Open at The Emirates. It won't be the same as the Commonwealth Games - different venue, different tournament and different nations competing - but Renicks hopes there will be signs that the events of the summer have left something of a legacy.

"I think tickets are selling really well and people have been asking me on Twitter and Facebook about how they can buy them so that's encouraging," she added. "I don't think I'll ever have the same feeling as I had at the Commonwealth Games but I think there will still be a loud welcome when I walk out at the Emirates for my first fight."

Renicks will be the sole member of the family competing, with Kimberley in rehab for a shoulder injury, but she can still count upon her sister offering loud verbal backing. "She won't be competing but she'll still be there, shouting and screaming no doubt. You won't be able to miss her."

o 2014 European Open, Emirates Arena, Saturday, from 11am. Tickets from £5. For more information, see