I'm an elite athlete without an elite bank account. In 2012 I successfully swam to France - self funded and self trained. This was a childhood dream realised. Water is where the world makes sense for me. I've never been competitive in the usual sense, but am definitely up for a challenge. I enjoyed swimming the English channel so much that 4 months later, I became the first British woman to swim the treacherous Kaiwi channel in Hawaii- only the 28th person ever to complete the swim- and all without any shark protection. This swim took me 24hrs of nonstop swimming and I was fortunate enough to be filmed for Hawaiian extreme sports tv.
This summer I'm looking to be the first person ever to swim from Cornwall to the Isles of Scilly. The 26mile stretch of water is renowned for strong currents, choppy cold water and good old British weather. Bring it on, I say. With these sorts of ultra marathon swims costing in the region of £3000 just for the basic event cost, it's enough of a challenge getting to the water let alone swimming for nearly 30miles. I'll be following English Channel rules which dictate that there is no insulation, flotation or propulsion and no physical contact with the swimmer at all from one side to the other. No wetsuit, no rest. Just lots and lots of swimming.
I have lived a life a little less ordinary, which has given me a good grounding in extreme endeavours- I ordained into a Thai monastery and studied intensive meditation for a year among other things. I also sufferd from ME from the age of 10 and ended up in a wheel chair at 17. Recovering from that, the mental and physical acuity that it created, is such a powerful thing that I feel blessed to have had the experience however foul it was at the time. It means I know what it's like to dig deep, and the lessons you get handed when you do really stand out.
Funds raised will go directly to the vital logistics- pilot boat hire, support crew, accommodation and lots of food! Rewards range from a smile and a mention to quite literally owning a piece of me. You can also benefit from my years working in massage if you're in the area- or even make a trip down and come swim with me.
Beyond this Scilly swim, I have plans to tackle the oceans seven- kind of the seven summits for swimmers- but I want to do it differently. The seven channels involved- of which I have already swum 2 can logistically be swum in a year. It's never been tried, and it is my fantasy year. Without your good selves raising awareness as well as cold hard cash, the challenge remains incomplete. No matter how small you think the donation, every drop in the ocean, it makes this a possibility. Many thanks for helping me swim myself Scilly.