The most common conversation that I have around ultra marathon swimming is about what it takes to prepare and do a swim. I usually talk about basic things like training, calories, physical energy, and time. It’s easy to focus on these things simply because they are measurable.
I was reminded today there is something far more important. There is an energy of open water swimming, a bi-directional flow. For all that I put into swimming (what it takes and what I give), I receive 2X as much in return. Im not really energized by being lauded for hard work and a good swim. I am energized by being able to help kids in dire situations. I think other open water swimmers experience something similar and this stood out as I watched the newly released film about Kim Chambers.
Her joy and passion are so evident but it’s the ability to inspire others to go after their dreams, overcome challenges and stare fear in its face that provides the return for her. Kim’s swims took a lot but what they’ve given to her and to others is amazing. The give pales in comparison to the receive. Check out the film here.
It’s been 6 weeks since my Loch Ness swim and the swim continues to give back to me in so many profound ways and I’m forever grateful.