Paris, June 11, 2015
In a few weeks I will be trying my first crossing as I seek to complete the Ocean’s Seven project. So far I have swum Catalina and the English Channel. Gibraltar, I hope, will be my third ocean crossing.
After five years away from seas, rivers and even pools, last October I decided to take a chance on this new challenge.
My attempts to climb mountains or run marathons were frustrated by a femur fracture and multiple other injuries. I made several summits and completed two marathons, New York and Chicago, with times that were far from my expectations. The injuries did not allow me to prepare properly.
I have been training seven and a half months now. These months have been spent regaining my form, and each day I feel better in the water. Already I’ve passed the test of six hours followed by open water swimming in the sea. Theoretically, at least, I’m ready.
Gibraltar came, like so many things in life, as a surprise. It was not even on the calendar for this year. I had agreed to temporarily serve as the Secretary of Education for the state of Puebla from March to late August, so even though there was a date available for swimming Gibraltar, I had postponed it. Last Thursday, the Governor decided to accelerate change in the Secretariat, moving it to the private sector overnight. Suddenly, it was possibile to resume the postponed swim.
I mentioned this to Nora Toledano and, to my surprise, I found out that my reservation to make the crossing was still current. Gibraltar would be my first of the year.
I have about three weeks for my window. Between July 3 and 9, if the weather permits, I will try to cross the Strait of Gibraltar.
I am calm. Yesterday and today I swam well—fast, painless and suffering from jetlag.