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2016 WOWSA AWARD WINNERS
2016 WOWSA Man of the Year – Nejib Belhedi
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Saturday, February 8, 2014
Swimming Is An Adventure
Very unlike his adventure swim along the length of Great Britain that took him 135 days in total, including 45 non-swimming days due to weather or logistics.
“I had to swim 3 miles off the coast because of the strong eddies that would have made swimming impossible,” explained the 32-year-old who swam twice a day, along with favorable tides, for much of the swim except towards the end when he scaled back his schedule once per day.
“Throughout the headlands, we faced winds and tides and lots of jellyfish, specifically the Lion’s Mane jellyfish. I actually grew my beard in order to shield my face against the jellyfish.”
But there were other obstacles and difficulties. “My crew - there were 4 of us - and I used a small boat and it was tough after the adrenalin runs out after about two weeks. I took a total of 8 showers over 4 months when the water temperature dropped from 11-12°C to 5-6°C. I wore a wetsuit and booties, but my feet were still white after each swim it was so cold. I dropped from 68 kg to 60 kg over the course of the swim and water started to leak into my wetsuit because my body was shrinking.”
While his crew was small and he was swimming solo, he was not alone. “The support on Facebook and Twitter were amazing. They were great supporters. With British Expedition, I had a 3G connection all the time.”
The explorer put the first swim along the entire coast of Great Britain into perspective, relative to his continental runs and bike rides. “Oh, this swim was by far the hardest thing that I have ever done. I was not only physically demanding, but the logistics were difficult. When you are the first to do something, we were just making things up as we went along. I had port masters tell me not to swim in their area [of responsibility]. ‘No one is doing to die on my watch,’ they said. But it was a real adventure.”
Photo of Sean Conway at the aQuellé Midmar Mile.
Copyright © 2014 by World Open Water Swimming Association
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Open Water Swimming Magazine
Open Water Swimming MagazineThe Open Water Swimming Magazine is the monthly magazine entirely focused on open water swimming heroes and heroines of every age, ability, and background. Published by the World Open Water Swimming Association, the Open Water Swimming Magazine is a free benefit to WOWSA members.
WOWSA Member Benefits include 12 issues of the Open Water Swimming Magazine, the annual 276-page Open Water Swimming Almanac, a free listing in Sponsor My Swim, outstanding product discounts from FINIS, an entry in Openwaterpedia and more...
The Other Shore
The Other Shore follows world record holder and legendary swimmer Diana Nyad as she comes out of a thirty-year retirement to re-attempt an elusive dream: swimming 103 miles non-stop from Cuba to Florida without the use of a shark cage. Her past and present collide in her obsession with a feat that nobody has ever accomplished. At the edge of The Devil’s Triangle, tropical storms, sharks, venomous jellyfish, and one of the strongest ocean currents in the world, all prove to be life-threatening realities. Timothy Wheeler’s documentary brings Diana Nyad’s extraordinary adventure to life as Diana sets out to prove that will and determination are all you need to make the unimaginable possible.
2014 Open Water Swimming Almanac
An Almanac for Open Water SwimmingAn almanac is essentially a body of knowledge which is so complete that it enables people in different fields to make predictions about the future of their respective industries.
This, for example, was the purpose of the traditional farmers almanacs. It enabled farmers to determine as accurately as possible which crops to plant for the greatest harvests in a given year.
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In fact, there is even one for open water swimming...
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The trends are very clear.
The tide is rising for open water swimming.