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Thursday, June 25, 2015

His Heart Is Into It, Nejib Belhedi’s Comeback

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

While Nejib Belhedi is most renowned for his channel and marathon swims including his most recent 15 km marathon swim in 7 hours 17 minutes, he is not known for his comeback from open heart surgery in 2005.

In a military hospital in Tunis, Belhedi’s doctors took a vein in his right leg to replace his blocked artery in his heart. After this surgery, Belhedi was extremely motivated to regain his health and ended up doing a 1400 km swim along the Tunisian coast and a variety of swims in cold, warm, rough and tranquil waters around the world.

“He swims like he has a second lease on life,” says Steven Munatones who has been covering his open water exploits for years. “Professor Dhaker Lahidheb from the Tunis military hospital remains a key member of his medical support team.“

During the operation, the doctors removed my heart from my chest and then repaired my heart by making 5 bypasses,” recalls Belhedi. “With the change of the government’s regimen and my determination that I wanted to recover, I was able to swim again and wake up healthy and continue my journey in the open water.”

In Gabes City, several thousands of people gathered at the finish to await Belhedi’s completion of his World Iron Swim and arrival on the Monastir shore on the eastern coast of Tunisia.

For Belhedi has a huge heart and will to swim.

Copyright © 2015 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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Open Water Swimming Magazine

Open Water Swimming Magazine

The 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.

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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.

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