The N’Ice Mile and STUPID COVID

Phew! I need to really catch up. Well after Anders Ice Kilometer at Donner Lake, we flew to Ireland for an Ice Mile Attempt. Wouldn’t you know it! The water was too warm! It’s really unimaginable to most people to say the water he was swimming in was too warm because it was 43 degrees, but it has to be under 41. Anyway, he swam his mile and we had fun in Ireland. We came home to realize that my Travel job was not renewing in San Francisco and we had to find a plan B. I quickly found a permanent position in Monterey, CA. Within 2 weeks, we were apartment hunting, packing, and moving into our new place. Anders was able to continue his training at Del Monte Beach and Lovers Point for a Catalina Swim in August. NOPE! Cancelled due to COVID. So what now?

Tre Kronor (Three Crowns)

Round Trip Alcatraz-August 12 This swim went well. His track was near perfect and his nutrition went great thanks to his Hammer Nutrition. The weather was great and very little wind.

Round Trip Treasure Island-September 11

Round Trip Angel Island-October TBD

Stay tuned…

Over 1000 Meters in the Ice

When you are swimming in water temperatures below 41 degrees and pushing your body to it’s limit, you need a team of people with you to make sure you stay safe. The goal of this swim was a mile. It was stopped at just over 1100 meters and around 33 minutes, due to swimmer safety. The team consisted of a director, an observer, a doctor, and a swimmer second/caregiver. An official time was taken at the 1000 meter for good measure.

Can Hockey Players Swim?

Inquiring minds want to know. The funny thing is that when Mancus Sorensen was asked when he was going to come swim from Acatraz, he asked Anders, “Isn’t that dangerous?” Let’s think about his for a minute… He has 200+ pound men charging him into walls with sticks, sharp blades on their feet, and pucks coming at him at 80 mph. No Marcus, I am pretty sure you win. I guess we will see if Hockey players can brave the unfrozen waters of the San Francisco Bay and go for a dip.

Ice, Ice, Baby

Cliché I know, but I just had to do it. Anyway, That has been what this winter has been about. Weekend trips to Donner Lake in Truckee, CA to train for my Ice mile attempt. I have the ok from the Doc and the EKG that says my heart is fine so we did the qualifier in 5.5C on December 15, 2018. I swam over 1,000 meters and felt great. We had a good safety plan in place and everything went off without any issues. Amy is even swimming up to 10 minutes this winter, Maybe she will give it a go next year. We had the Ice mile attempt planned for December 23, but the water was just shy of being cold enough at 5.1C. We did some training swims and just enjoyed a white Christmas in this beautiful location. We have set up a new date of January 26th and I will continue to train until then. New Years Eve weekend I am working on reaching a swimming milestone for the end of the year and I will update with a new post later.

Swimmer to Coach

This fall I shifted rolls a bit to help my wife, Amy achieve a goal. She has supported me so much kayaking, support swimming, you name it…It was my turn to switch it up. I spent October after we returned from England, helping her train for her Round Trip Alcatraz swim. She swam the most she has ever swam in a month and when the day of the swim came, she felt ready.

She swam strong and steady and kept a good pace for 2:23, even when faced with a ferry boat making a U-turn right next to her. I kayaked right next to her and we were the great team that we always are. She finished strong. After that it was time to set our goals for 2019. More to come…

English Channel 2018

September 17th, 2018. We started the morning with boarding the boat at 2 am. I had been moved up from the #3 spot to #1 spot since there was a storm coming and I had the speed to make it across before it moved in.
The ride out from the harbor got a little bumpy right off the bat and I thought to myself, “this is going to be a long day”. When we got to the spot where I was going to start I climbed down the ladder and jumped in the water. It was warm and nice and with the waves in my back I swam in to shore.
I got there and got out of the water so my feet where clear and raised my arm to signal the boat and off I went. Since it was completely pitch black I only had the lights on the boats to go by and it felt fine. However now the winds were coming from my front right side and I have to say it was a little bumpy, 14 knots.
I tried to settle in to my groove but it was hard. First of my eye sight at night is not very good so I couldn’t see how far away the boat was. I saw the lights but I couldn’t determine how far away they were. Maybe just old age, who knows? I swam in to the boat a few times and decided to swim a little further out. But that caused another problem, now I didn’t have the protection from the boat. I started to swallow a lot of sea water which was the start of the end of this swim.
After 2 1/2 hrs of swimming, I was really struggling. It was still dark and I had swallowed a lot by now. Tracy asked me if I wanted to have her swim with me and I said yes please.
While being tossed around and swimming away from the boat at one point I did see something really cool. The sun was starting to peak over the horizon and it started to light up the cliffs of Dover. It was majestic, it was just like they were glowing in the dark.
When Tracy and I were swimming I did mention the fact that it was getting a little harder for me to breath and my throat was really sore. But I kept on swimming hoping the winds were going to die down a little. In fact they had. I found out later that it was down to 8 knots but too much damage had been done in the first 3 hrs in the dark.
I never found my groove at all and felt very stiff in my stroke. It was a hard swim but it was the only window I had for the rest of the week.
I did manage to get into the first shipping lane before I called it. It was close to 9 miles in about 4 hrs, that turns out to be a 1:30 min ish/100 yard pace. So I have the speed, just not the luck on this one.
Everything else worked out great. Eddie with his crew did a great job with the boat. Amy, my lovely wife and Tracy did wonderful on the boat to motivate me to keep on going and with the feeds. My feeds from Hammer Nutrition worked just as planned and I felt really good of everyone in my crew.
I want to say thank you for all the kind words that I have received before and after this swim.
I will end this note with this. I will come back, I will swim the Whole channel, I WILL SUCCEED in swimming to France!

A Viking Wedding and A Lot of Swimming

June-August 2018

I completed my 6 hour English Channel Qualifier Swim just before our wedding, which was a weight lifted and allowed me to relax a bit for the big day. 6 hourMy bride decided she would still marry me even after I walked out onto the beach dressed as a Viking. The wedding was beautiful and took place at an undisclosed location in San Francisco overlooking the beautiful bay that we swim in everyday.

Then the honeymoon, where we stayed in the Ice Hotel for 2 nights. I went for a swim in the Torne River, and we threw in some white water rafting and the Midnight Sun just for fun. Then we were off again to Ludvika for some swimming with an Ocean 7 Swimmer Anna Carin Nordin in my hometown, and some fun swimming in a small lake near my father’s home with my wife. I got to visit with my family and have a nice dinner to celebrate our wedding. We then took the train to Stockholm. We of course stayed in a hostel on the water and got to see all the sights. it was a lot of fun, but a lot of walking. I really prefer swimming, because that doesn’t make my feet hurt so much 🙂

Upon returning to San Francisco, I was all business. Training and building. Working towards my English Channel attempt. Amy kayaked for me every weekend for hours while I swam, no matter the weather. We both had a goal. Mine was to swim across the English Channel and hers was to make sure I succeeded. IMG_3299 More to come…

UPDATE UPDATE UPDATE!!!

I know it has been quite a while since I have published a blog, but things have been a bit crazy. I have relocated to San Francisco, CA. My girlfriend Amy and I packed up a Mazda 3 with our Boxer Ran and spent 15 days car camping across the country. Met and swam with some great people along the way. It was the start of a great adventure, which has continued since we have settled here in California. I have coached Amy who has become a great training partner and kayaker/crew for my long swims that can happen as often as I like in the waters of the San Francisco Bay. Somewhere in there Amy swam from Alcatraz and on that day, she became my fiancé. I am letting her handle the wedding planning (just kidding-I’m helping too), because I have my sights set on France. I am networking with swimmers that have completed English Channel, Cooke Strait, Around Manhattan, Catalina crossings, Width and length of Lake Tahoe, and numerous other swims around the world. The knowledge and training advice is invaluable. My training is intensifying and distance is building. More to come…

anders

Memphremagog Winter Swimming Festival

 

memphremagog 1

This is my recap of my first experience in a competitive ice swim.

THURSDAY, MARCH 2

8:30 am – Depart Virginia Beach

5:30 pm – Arrive in upstate New York

8:30 pm – Dinner, Bed

FRIDAY, MARCH 3

8:00 am – Breakfast (Swedish Pancakes)

11:00 am – Depart New York

5:00 pm – Arrive Vermont – checked in, rest a bit

6:00 pm – Dinner/Social was great opportunity to network with other swimmers

8:00 pm – Bed

memphremagog 2SATURDAY, MARCH 4

6:00 am – Light snow and windy, temperature was 3°F; felt like -13°F.  Breakfast; eat, back to room.  Had 1 serving each of Heed and Fully Charged, Emergen-C, and packed another Heed and Fully Charged.

8:15 am – off to the “pool”, but no one else showed up until 9:50 am – 40 competitors at the start

Race Time:  Temp -3°F, feels like -21°F

Race #1 = 25m Hat Competition. Just for fun.  Represented Sweden in my Viking helmet.  Kind of fun…burning sensation begins

Race #2 = 25m Breast.  Haven’t done that much breast so I did what I could and managed to get my face in the water a few times

Race #3 = 25m Freestyle.  Now we are starting to kind of race.  Tried to swim the whole 25m with my face in the water but after a big gulp I had to go back to the Tarzan stroke.

— LUNCH BREAK —

Windy – was the worst water on your legs, and your back would freeze.  Colder than WTF (anything I have ever experienced) – meaning the wind chill was down to -25°F.  The volunteers did a great job.  Energized for the final race of the day with a Heed and Fully Charged.

Race #4 = 50m Freestyle. This is more my kind of race but I had to be careful with the platforms at the turn.  I did well and managed to keep my face in the water the whole time (about 42 seconds).  

Time to go back to the hotel to warm up and nap…dinner at 6:00pm with awards.

memphremagog 3SUNDAY, MARCH 5

Up at 5:30 am; sinuses hurt.  Heat pack.  0° feels like -15°F.

After breakfast, we packed up and headed to the “beach”.   Heed x 2; Fully Charged x 1

Safety meeting was held at 9:45 am, and the 100m Freestyle began at 10:00 am.  Since I had successfully completed the 50 on Saturday, I knew I could complete the 100m.  Water temp 30.6°F; wind was down and sun was out.  I got in and the first 50m was easy so I thought another 50 down and back and I got this.  At 75m I thought my hands were going to fall off but I pushed through.  I finished in 1:43.2.

The 25 can be compared to a Polar Plunge (plus some), 50 you have to train for, 100 was hurting.  You then have to get in the right frame of mind for the 200, which is complete will power.

By the 200, the original 40 competitors were now down to 10.  I was the last one paired in the 200 and I knew it would hurt but I had to focus on each 50 and on my breathing.  At 100 I was a bit doubtful if I would finish but I just told myself “I didn’t drive 14 hours to DNF…suck it UP!”  At 150 I was not sure how much I had left.  People were screaming right next to me and I just focused 25 more = 175.  When I did my last turn I thought “I’m NOT walking back!”  My hands felt like lead, my body ached and I just focused on ONE MORE.  At 200 I was not sure if I was done or not.  I had to ask the helpers poolside if I was done.

RESULTS

25m Breast = 23.68 sec

25m Freestyle = 22.8 sec

50m Freestyle = 43.04 sec

100m Freestyle = 1:43.2 min

200m Freestyle = 3:44.11 min

Overall rank = 5th place

IN SUMMARY

The recovery took a long time for me and even now 30 hours later my hands still tingle.

Will I do this again?  HELL YEAH!

 

I arrived home after a 14 hour drive to find a nice package from Hammer Nutrition that included Recoverite, which was a huge help.  Time to regroup and focus on next week’s Ice K!