TODAY IS ABBY’S DAY! Abby will begin her crossing sometime between 9PM and 1AM tonight/tomorrow morning. She will swim through the night and arrive on the California coast likely between 10 and noon. I wanted to write a quick post about what I think makes Abby such a stellar open-water, marathon swimmer and why I know she’ll successfully complete her crossing, so here is my acrostic poem for my friend, training partner, and teammate: Abigail Rose.
In order to be a successful marathon swimmer you have to set your eyes on incredible goals and believe that you can achieve them. Abby is ambitious and has set her eyes on the triple crown of open water swimming beginning with Catalina this summer followed up by the English Channel next. “You must expect greatness to achieve greatness.” Abby expects it of herself and will no doubt achieve it.
You also have to be a bad-ass to do these swims!! Being in the water, in open ocean for 10+ hours is no joke. Most people can’t even fathom attempting something like this let alone dedicated yourself to a grueling grind and doing it. Abby is a certified bad-ass who can take on just about anything in the open water. OH! And did I mention that she is going to be swimming IN PITCH BLACKNESS THROUGH THE NIGHT? Check out this link to someone doing a feed stop during a Catalina crossing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nuObpHnZJx0 pretty bad-ass in my opinion..
Abby has already accomplished so much to be proud of! She’s killed it in her training and in races this summer and within the next 48 hours she’ll have another major, impressive feat to add to the long list of her accomplishments.
Not only do marathon swimmers have to set big goals, they have to set incremental goals that you work to meet each day, week, and month of training. Abby is a goal-oriented, task-master!! She has done something every day to make herself better and more prepared and I know it’s about to all pay off.
Another key aspect of these swims is problem-solving and analytics. You have to assess changing situations, be extremely aware of your body and navigate the physical and mental task of hour after hour of swimming. Abby is supremely logical and analytical and will be able to adapt to any circumstance that arises because she’s already thought through it 197,523 times.
This is one quality that makes Abby a great training partner. Her passion and dedication and energy for swimming is infectious! Especially at the very beginning of my training for the P2P, her being my training partner was instrumental to my success. She inspires pretty much anyone who is lucky enough to see her hard-work first hand.
Abby is also level-headed. It is important to balance optimism with realism when doing these big swims. Abby is great at combining the two and staying calm and focused in and out of the water.
This girl just does not and never will quit!! She bounces back from tough practices and tough training swims with more zeal and dedication for the next day.
By far the best piece of advice I have gotten in this whole training process came from Paige Christie when she told me, “everyone is going to have their own opinions and advice and you have to trust yourself and follow YOUR gut.” Abby is thoughtful and because she has thought through everything so extensively she is opinionated! This is a great trait because ultimately she is the only one who will be in the water and has to know what she wants, when she wants it, and how she wants it, and she does!
“Everyone has the will to win but not everyone has the will to prepare to win.” Marathon swimming is all about the preparation and training you put in before the swim. You can’t fake it through or wing a 10+ hour, 20+ mile athletic adventure. Abby has been steadfast, dedicated and unrelenting in her training. She’s earned her Catalina swim, now all that is left is for her to do it.
Last but not least, Abby truly is a special, exceptional person. This sport is not for everyone. It takes a specific type of determination, craziness, and intrepidness to do. Abby has all of the above listed qualities and characteristics which is what makes her so special. These same qualities are why I know she will dominate Catalina today. ❤
FOLLOW ABBY’S SWIM ON THIS TRAKR:
It’ll go live once she starts!