For my ultra-marathon swims, I follow the venerable practice of swimming according to English Channel rules:
‘Swimmers are only allowed to wear goggles and swim suits without any kind of flotation. Wet suits and full length arm and leg suits are forbidden. A swimmer cannot touch the boat at any time during the swim. A swimmer must start and end the swim on land and can't be assisted out of the water.’
Lake Zurich – August 4, 2013
Monterey Bay – October, 2013
San Francisco to Santa Barbara Relay swim – September 23, 2012
Goal: 339 Miles, Actual Distance: 181 miles in 6 days
The Night Train Swimmers set out to swim 339 miles down the coast of California from the Golden Gate Bridge to Santa Barbara. The team included Kim Chambers, Joe Lock, Phil Cutti, Dave Holscher, Zack Jirkovsky and I. Our amazing crew, Vito Bialla, Patrick Horn and Hal McCormick guided us and kept us safe despite tough conditions. The relay was swum in one hour rotations so we each swam 4 times during a 24 hour period. In the 5 hours between swims we got warm, ate and tried to sleep. We often experienced rough seas in 53 - 59°F (9.5°C) water. Although we didn’t reach our distance goal, the support from family and friends helped us to raise $1.2M for the Semper Fi fund.
Manhattan Island Marathon Swim – June 23, 2012
New York, NY
Tampa Bay Marathon Swim – April 21, 2012
St. Petersburg, FL
24 miles – Race was ended at 17 miles due to a thunder storm
Farallon Islands – Relay Swim
June 4, 2011 – As part of the Night Train Swimmers all-female team, we finished our 30-mile relay from the Golden Gate Bridge to the South Farallon Island in 16:29:30. The team included Kim Chambers, Laura Vartain Horn, Cathy Delneo, Melissa King, Lynn Kubasek and me. We went through five rotations of one hour. Kim finished while swimming in the dark at 9:19 pm in breaking waves, white caps in 15-20 foot seas in 49°F (9.5°C) water at the buoy. I'm grateful for the experience of swimming with these amazing women through beautiful waters.
August 21, 2010
June 28, 2011
For both attempts, I set out at midnight to swim the 23 mile width of Monterey Bay from Santa Cruz to Monterey State Park. This swim was successfully completed by only one person, Cindy Cleveland, in 1980. There are numerous challenges with this swim including wind and waves, a water temperature of 56 degrees, jellyfish and other creatures. During both swims, I encountered jellyfish. During the 2010 swim, I was stung over 3 dozen times and was pulled out. The buildup of the toxin from the jelly fish caused me to be unable to regulate my body temperature. As a result I quickly developed hypothermia and had to get out of the water. During the 2011, I had an allergic reaction to the jelly toxin and I had to stop after swimming over 11 miles.
I will attempt this swim again – once the jellies become less prevalent!
August 28, 2009
Length of Tahoe – 22 miles at 6225 ft. elevation from Camp Richardson to Incline Village.
Help of friends and family
Its not possible to do these types of swims alone.
Family and friends: Give me constant encouragement and support and get me through the tough times.
Training partners: Push me, motivate me and make me laugh.
Crew support: Watch over me, feed me and rescue me if needed. I am forever grateful for their support.
Coaches: Focus me on the right things.I could make up my own workouts but coaching is an art and science and I leave workouts to the experts.