We wrote a nature vs. nurture story earlier this year about cold-water swim preparations.
What is more important to swim well in cold water, a swimmer’s innate qualities (e.g., body fat percentage and mental toughness) or the swimmer’s training and acclimatization to cold water through hard work and commitment?
One 25-year-old former pool swimmer of slender build (170 cm, 54.4 kg or 5'-7", 120 lbs. or 8.5 stone), Laurin Weisenthal, is one example that nurture (i.e., hard training) played a very important role in her solid performance yesterday in the English Channel.
Laurin, in her first major marathon swim and first try in the English Channel swam a quick 8:33.
She said, "I had a great day: very calm, sunny, warm water. I got sliced on the rocks, but totally worth it. Karri (sister) and Neal (fiance) had to practically pry me off the rock I was clinging to, I just wanted to rest so badly."
Copyright © 2009 by World Open Water Swimming Association