A 48 hour swim in Manhattan

ScottZornigScottZornig Member
edited October 2013 in General Discussion
I was convinced I had written my last piece on Diana Nyad. I truly believed I was done with the subject and intended to move on, but it is interesting how things work out.

I am in Manhattan this week on a business trip. I was walking along 6th avenue between 31st and 42nd street this morning when I noticed some commotion going on in Herald Square. As I approached the venue, I overheard some people talking about this 64 year old woman who is attempting to swim for 48 hours straight in a temporary pool to raise money for Hurricane Sandy victims.

I had heard about this stunt a few weeks ago, but had forgotten about it. I had no idea Diana Nyad was doing this swim today and tomorrow. In fact, she had been swimming already for 2:30 hours when I arrived. I had some time to kill between appointments and my curiosity got the best of me. I really wanted to go in and watch the event, but did not want to pay as in my mind, it could be construed as validating her Cuba swim. So I went to the VIP entrance and told them who I was. They contacted Bonnie (Diana's coach and friend) and she not only invited me in for free, but welcomed me with open arms. She even positioned me right at the end of her lane which was as close as anyone could get to her without actually being in the pool (I guess Bonnie had not read any of my comments on DN's swim nor did she know I serve on the same board as Evan). Anyway, I was so close to Diana that I was able to hear every word she said as she stopped for breaks and interviews.

I spent about an hour watching DN swim. I also asked her support team many questions. Although I am quite sure she will complete this endeavor, what I witnessed today did nothing to convince me about her Cuba to Florida endeavor. In fact, it caused me to once again question her assisted swim. Here is why:

1. It was apparent that the people at the pool did not have much knowledge about swimming. I asked some basic questions which her support team could not answer. It seems as though DN likes to surround herself with people less knowledgeable about swimming.

2. The pool was exactly 40 yards long. Diana consistently averaged 36 strokes per side and it took her an average of 45 seconds to complete the 40 yards which equates to a 7:30 for every 400 yards. She was slower than I thought and although she did effectively breath to both sides, her stroke was not overly efficient. Remember, this is the early stages of her swim before she becomes tired and starts slowing down.

3. She complained the pool was too cold. I asked Bonnie what the water temperature was and she said it was 82 degrees. She should not be cold in an 82 degree pool after only 2:30 hours. The air temperature was 63 degrees with no wind and the sun was shining on her back the entire morning.

4. At the 3:30 mark, they stopped Diana to interview her. The press asked her how far she had gone already and she responded with 8 or 9 miles. I quickly did the math and the most she could possibly have done is 6.3 miles at the pace she had been swimming.

5. I was surprised because there did not seem to be anyone with a strong swimming background officiating the event. There did not seem to be anyone counting laps or writing notes. Bonnie seemed to be the sole person coordinating efforts and directing the support team.

6. Diana made it known to the press that she was not allowed to stand on the bottom of the pool or touch the lane line (which to me, is no big deal). However, I saw her support team rub Vaseline on her on a few occasions and physically put food/drink in her mouth. Diana did not touch her own food until it was in her mouth. It makes you wonder about the feedings in the Cuba channel.

I certainly recognize that this is not a marathon swim so she can do as she wishes, but it was interesting to witness her speed or lack thereof. I also was able to observe her support team in action and it was clear that touching and physical assistance are very much acceptable. I think the thing which bothered me most was when DN gave her estimated distance completed to the reporters. 8 or 9 miles is not even close to the 6.3 miles I calculated and I did not even include the breaks she was taking which would probably drop her distance down to 5.7 or 5.8 miles completed.

Another thing that bothered me is that Bonnie said Diana's 46 sponsors "spent $850K" on this event which I believe was planned before her Cuba swim. There was obviously a lot of pressure on DN to make the Cuba swim this time around so that interest would remain high for this endeavor.

I will let all of you draw your own conclusions, but I have some concerns with what I witnessed today. It makes me wonder if there could be a death bed confession from someone 10 to 20 years from now?
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Comments

  • NiekNiek Member
    edited October 2013
    She's still to lazy to feed herself.
    image
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • Pool - now she has the "no touching" rule? Just friggin' slay me now...
  • mjstaplesmjstaples Atlanta, GA, USMember
    Funny! Saw a pic of her holding onto a lane line while she was talking to lochte.
  • As long as she keeps to the rules http://www.fina.org...rules...
    SW 10.6 Pulling on the lane rope is not allowed.
    SW 10.8 No swimmer shall be permitted to use or wear any device or swimsuit that may aid his/her speed, buoyancy or endurance during a competition (such as webbed gloves, flippers, fins, power bands, or adhesive substances, etc.). Goggles may be worn. Any kind of tape on the body is not permitted unless approved by FINA Sport Medicine Committee.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • JBirrrdJBirrrd Member
    edited October 2013
    What exactly is this swim? Some kind of record attempt? If so I understand the need for rules, but if this is simply a charity event/publicity stunt, can't she do what ever she wants: hang on laneline, feed off the wall, have a tea party in the shallow end for fun. Confusing to see her support crew hand feeding her (what IS that all about?) and then this photo of her yucking it up w/ Ryan Lochte. Rigid rules...then not so much. I really don't get it.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151925932089292&set=a.413167244291.185671.32686234291&type=1&theater
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited October 2013
    http://www.diananyad.com/blog/NYADSwimforRelief Unlike the ocean where we respect rules of the sport to the letter and I never receive any flotation or forward progress aid, where I would never touch the boat, hang onto the boat, or certainly get out onto the boat, there are no rules for these 48 hours.
    =))
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • http://www.diananyad.com/blog/NYADSwimforRelief Unlike the ocean where we respect rules of the sport to the letter and I never receive any flotation or forward progress aid, where I would never touch the boat, hang onto the boat, or certainly get out onto the boat, there are no rules for these 48 hours.
    =))
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    It is like I'm re-reading the bio of Webb and his after-EC stunts.
  • Niek said:

    http://www.diananyad.com/blog/NYADSwimforRelief Unlike the ocean where we respect rules of the sport to the letter and I never receive any flotation or forward progress aid, where I would never touch the boat, hang onto the boat, or certainly get out onto the boat, there are no rules for these 48 hours.
    =))
    well, she has learnt to disclose the rules in advance :-)

  • OK...I just watched a 15-16 minute plus break of non swimming.....21.52 onwards.....sleep break/jellyfish/tides/makeup ???
  • I wish I had the technology......but does anyone have the ability to film the last 24 online........????? Guaranteed not many miles/K;s
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited October 2013
    Around the 24 hour mark I watched for a few minutes and she was swimming a tempo of
    1,094 km/hour = 0 mi 1197.0 yd/hour
    in 48 hours that would give 32 mi = 28.36 nmi if she would swim without breaks.

    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • IronMike said:

    It is like I'm re-reading the bio of Webb and his after-EC stunts.

    Are you implying that we should encourage her to try the whirlpool below Niagara Falls?

    -LBJ

    "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go." - T.S. Eliot
  • jvjjvj Member
    Is this being live-streamed anywhere?
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    JBirrrd said:

    What exactly is this swim? Some kind of record attempt? If so I understand the need for rules, but if this is simply a charity event/publicity stunt, can't she do what ever she wants: hang on laneline, feed off the wall, have a tea party in the shallow end for fun. Confusing to see her support crew hand feeding her (what IS that all about?) and then this photo of her yucking it up w/ Ryan Lochte. Rigid rules...then not so much. I really don't get it.

    https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151925932089292&set=a.413167244291.185671.32686234291&type=1&theater

    The comments to that FB picture are hilariously fun to read.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    edited October 2013
    It is like I'm re-reading the bio of Webb and his after-EC stunts.

    IronMike said:

    It is like I'm re-reading the bio of Webb and his after-EC stunts.

    Are you implying that we should encourage her to try the whirlpool below Niagara Falls?
    NO!
  • jvj said:

    Is this being live-streamed anywhere?

    Try here: http://www.crowdrise.com/SwimForRelief

    BTW, does anyone know what people have to do to swim along side her?

    -LBJ

    "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go." - T.S. Eliot
  • BTW, does anyone know what people have to do to swim along side her?

    I image not being a member of this forum would be on the list.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    edited October 2013

    jvj said:

    Is this being live-streamed anywhere?

    Try here: http://www.crowdrise.com/SwimForRelief
    OK, I thought the live-stream would make me want to puke, but reading the fawning comments on it are so much fun. I wish I weren't at work; I'd play the drinking game Nyad that someone recommended earlier!
  • jvjjvj Member
    "I will tread water for my food & drink stops, rather than casually stand on the bottom of the shallow pool, in some sort of solidarity with the Sandy victims and their tough times." - from DN website

    Just watched a long break where she stood on the bottom the whole time with her arms draped across the lane line for support. I know she said there were no rules for this swim but why post stuff like statement above if she doesn't intend to follow it?
  • I just timed Ms. Nyad for 320 yards (4 full laps) and she was doing 38:30/mile pace (1.56 miles/hour). Not too bad for 25+ hours of swimming.

    The people that I have seen swimming with her were all terrible, but the last person was keeping up with her and definately holding back, so maybe they have been told they can't go any faster than she.

    I must confess that I'd like to do a half hour with her, if only to be able to tell people I once swam in Times Square to watch the reactions. Plus I'd wear my one suit that is about 1 thread and one flip turn away from ripping completely from crotch to waist in the back.

    -LBJ
    "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go." - T.S. Eliot
  • @ScottZornig, if only someone would invent something like a lap counting watch...
  • JBirrrdJBirrrd Member
    edited October 2013
    Just tuned in. Gave it 2 mins. About as fascinating as watching paint dry, and this coming from a former swim coach and 13 year swim parent veteran. I have spent many hours watching swimmers swim. This was mind-numbingly boring to me. That being said, if other people want to watch this event or pay to swim and donate money to help a good cause, I say, what is the harm? I don't plan on tuning in again or supporting her swim in anyway.
    I did appreciate your comments and analysis @ScottZornig.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    I have no problem with her stunt. I only still have it up in a Firefox tab to read the comments from the fans. Entertainment for free!
  • I am just grateful that I have finally found out I am NOT as slow as DN.
    That just made my day.
    I love swimming
    www.suziedodsswimcoaching.com
  • I was told by Bonnie yesterday that anyone can swim with DN for free. One just has to get in line, but there did not seem to be an overly long line when I was there. The one rule is to swim her speed which makes sense to me. There seemed to be some fast swimmers (NYCFD) who obviously had to hold back.

    As I said perviously, I am now having some doubts. After the infamous conference call, I believed that the Cuba effort was an amazing effort and that she should be credited with an 'assisted' swim. After watching the circus yesterday, I am wondering if it really was an 'assisted stage' swim? By the way, I think the cause is awesome, but wonder if the $850K could have had a biger impact if it had been given directly to Hurricane Sandy's victims.

    I know a bit about marketing and PR via my business ventures, but I will give DN her due....she is unmatched at promoting the DN brand. I have never seen anything like it.
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    To be fair, should we judge her stroke rate in this live-streaming? She did just do the cuba-florida thing a month ago. Could she still be sore from that?
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited October 2013
    A month has gone by.
    Should be enough for the person that was very live and kicking the next day 24h after her swim. Without any visible physical after-effects after spending 53 hours in salt water.
    Have you looked so well yourself after a big swim?
    http://abcnews.go.com/US/video/diana-nyad-press-conference-2013-swimmer-63-discusses-20144167
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • jvjjvj Member
    Just jumped on the streaming site to see how she was doing and the screen showed "This Relief Moment brought to you by CHARMIN"

    ROTFL

    If nothing else, the lady does know her marketing...
  • I was just about to describe @ScottZornig's account to someone when I found myself using the word Observation. Due to the irony overload, I was unable to continue.
  • bobswimsbobswims Charter Member
    edited October 2013
    jvj said:

    Just jumped on the streaming site to see how she was doing and the screen showed "This Relief Moment brought to you by CHARMIN"

    ROTFL

    If nothing else, the lady does know her marketing...

    I just checked it out and the soundtrack was "Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" by AC/DC

    Is that a "shortie" stinger suit she has on?
  • lcolettelcolette Charter Member
    So she is going to admit to peeing in the pool?
  • So she is going to admit to peeing in the pool?

    Well, when swimming w/ Ryan Lochte, this would not be an issue...

  • vvisevvise Member
    edited October 2013
    http://instagram.com/p/fRPdZYKRc1/
    Around Hour 37

    Edited to post link, unable to post photo
  • vvisevvise Member
    edited October 2013
    Sorry all, tried to post the above as an image from internet, and from my Dropbox account, still getting the hang of it!
  • OK...cant be bothered watching it all but 44 hrs in - another 15 min plus break..watched 4 laps since jumped back in- stand up and 10-20 second break after EACH lap !!
  • and then another lap and 2 min break and another lap and a 30 sec break........................and...and ..and
  • It will be interesting to compare the 'immediately after' picture of this swim compared to Cuba. She should be done swimming in 20 minutes.
  • evmoevmo San FranciscoAdmin
    vvise said:

    http://instagram.com/p/fRPdZYKRc1/
    Around Hour 37

    Edited to post link, unable to post photo

    vvise said:

    Sorry all, tried to post the above as an image from internet, and from my Dropbox account, still getting the hang of it!

    Instagram images are tricky to embed, because that site disables the "Copy Image URL" right-click menu item to discourage hotlinking.

    There are two work-arounds:

    1. Take a screen-shot of the image on Instagram, upload to Imgur or Dropbox, and embed the Imgur/Dropbox link (ending in PNG or JPG) on the Forum.

    2. Use the Inspect Element tool (Chrome) or Firebug (Firefox) to find the underlying (hidden) image URL. Right-click on the image, choose "Inspect Element." Find the image URL ending in .jpg, and embed that to the forum. For the image @vvise attempted to post above, that URL is:

    http://distilleryimage9.ak.instagram.com/020e6d4e315011e3a39f22000aa8011e_8.jpg

    And here's the embedded version:

    image
  • Just for kicks and giggles...
    This morning I got compared to a" flea on an elephant" for bothering to question and inquire about DN's swim and her swim now.
    So, it that better than or worse than a "Hater"?
    I love swimming
    www.suziedodsswimcoaching.com
  • IronMikeIronMike Bishkek, KyrgyzstanCharter Member
    suziedods said:

    Just for kicks and giggles...
    This morning I got compared to a" flea on an elephant" for bothering to question and inquire about DN's swim and her swim now.
    So, it that better than or worse than a "Hater"?

    I'd say worse. A hater is at least a person. A flea...well...
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited October 2013
    Depends.
    Does the flea hates the elephant or is it the other way around.

    Or with enough ego like DN has.... than the flea is as big as the elephant.
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited October 2013

    It will be interesting to compare the 'immediately after' picture of this swim compared to Cuba. She should be done swimming in 20 minutes.

    imageimageimage

    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • Wow and her page says she raised $107,081. Too bad her sponsors didn't bypass the ridiculous $850,000 grandstand and give directly to the hurricane victims.
    You go girl!
  • lcolettelcolette Charter Member
    Yes, but most of the raising is by teams of supporters.... so I'm not going with 'she raised it' more like 'she facilitated it'..... And the sponsors could have spent that money to help much better but it is all the advertising I guess...
  • bobswimsbobswims Charter Member
    And the Nyad PR machine marches on.

    "Nyad ends NY swim, raises $103K for Sandy victims"

    http://news.yahoo.com/nyad-ends-ny-swim-raises-103k-sandy-victims-130121129--spt.html

    Actually according to her own website she raised only $38,246. The rest was raised through the hard work of others.

    http://www.crowdrise.com/SwimForRelief

    Why can't she just say that she raised $38,246 and with the help of many others a total of $103K was raised? Is it that hard to give credit to others?
  • @ bobswims said:
    Why can't she just say that she raised $38,246 and with the help of many others a total of $103K was raised? Is it that hard to give credit to others?

    Because, well, you know, $38,246 is not as impressive an amount as say $103,000, and may indicate that the Diana Nyad show is not the blockbuster it was expected to be. A bit of an embarrassment when you consider the $850,000 production cost. Kind of makes me wonder how video and future book sales will pan out.
  • "It honestly was tougher than I ever imagined it to be," the 64-year-old Nyad said as she emerged from the pool at 8:48 a.m.
    Note "honestly" SMH...
  • NiekNiek Member
    edited October 2013
    to much witness....
    http://openwaterswimming.eu - Cold, wind, waves, sunburn, currents, jellyfish and flotsam! Hop in and join the fun!
  • This wasn't what I hoped for. Based on the few pictures I saw, she appeared to be in stellar physical condition, and I hoped she would go for the 48 hours without holding on to the lane line or resting on the side of the pool. At any rate, despite the fact that this isn't as pure as I hoped, are there any accurate estimates on the actual amount of laps or miles completed in the 48 hour time frame?
    Lactate is for wimps.
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