One of the most appreciated compliments received by any athlete is from one’s own peers.
The Class of 2018 honorees in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame represent the largest group of individuals to be inducted in a single year over the institution’s history.
Each one of this year’s inductees are remarkable athletes who have completed incredible feats in the open water and are exceptional humans who lead inspirational lives on dryland. Some have achieved greatness in competitive races, some in solo crossings, some in unprecedented swims. While their greatest swims are publicly well-known, it is the relentless dedication and numerous hours they put in hard, solitary training year after year that enable them to complete their swims in lakes, river, and seas around the world.
The honorees are selected by their peers who include Nick Adams, Tamara Bruce, Penny Dean, Yuko Matsuzaki, David O’Brien, Skip Storch, Valerio Valli, Forrest Nelson, David Barra, Dr. Osama Ahmed Momtaz, Michael P. Read, MBE, Peter Bales, Elizabeth Fry, Marcella MacDonald, DPM, Captain Tim Johnson, Vojislav Mijić, Ricardo Ratto, Dr. Jane Katz, Valerie Parsons, Lynn Blouin, Kathrin Lammers, Sally Minty-Gravett, MBE, Evan Morrison, Philip Rush, Dan Simonelli, Ben Barham, Penny Palfrey, Carol Sing, Natalya Pankina, Petar Stoychev, Silvia Dalotto, Stéphane Lecat, Kevin Murphy, Greg Streppel, Peter van Vooren, Jacques Tuset, Attila Mányoki, and John York.
Her Oceans Seven included the following swims between the ages of 39 and 42:
#1 September 2010: English Channel from England to France is 12 hours 59 seconds
#2 November 2011: Molokai Channel from Molokai Island to Oahu in 18 hours 22 minutes
#3 May 2012: Strait of Gibraltar from Spain to Morocco in 4 hours 46 minutes
#4 July 2012: Catalina Channel from Catalina Island to the California mainland in 12 hours 40 minutes
#5 September 2012: Tsugaru Channel from Honshu to Hokkaido in Japan in 19 hours 11 minutes
#6 April 2013: Cook Strait from South Island to North Island in 8 hours 18 minutes
#7 July 2013: North Channel from Scotland to Northern Ireland in 14 hours 21 minutes
In addition, she has completed the 26.4 km International Self-Transcendence Marathon Swim in Switzerland in 8 hours 45 minutes, 43.4 km cross-border swim from Eckerö, Finland to Grisslehamn, Sweden in 14 hours 31 minutes, the 2009 FINA 10K Marathon Swimming World Cup race in Copenhagen, 20 km in Norrfjärden-Mellanfjärden along the Swedish coastline, and the ILDSA Lough Erne 25 km in Northern Ireland.
In the cold water, she has competed in the 2016 Scandinavian Winter Swimming Championships and in the 450m endurance swim at the 2014 Winter Swimming Championships in Finland, and completed an Ice Mile in Sweden in 4°C water.
As a relay swimmers, she participated in the 2017 Triskelion relay with Olive Conroy (Ireland), Conor Turner (Ireland), Elina Makïnen (Finland), Rory Fitzgerald (Ireland), and Carole Laporte (France) that crossed 69.7 km across the Irish Sea from the Isle of Man to Ardglass in Northern Ireland in 18 hours 8 minutes, and the Fast and Frozen relay that completed an unprecedented 2-way North Channel crossing from Ireland to Scotland to Ireland in 29 hours 57 minutes in 2015 with Henri Kaarma (Estonia), Ryan Stramrood (South Africa), Patrick Corcoran (Ireland), Zdenek Thalmika (Czech Republic), and Elina Makïnen (Finland).
She discussed her career to date:
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: How does it feel to be inducted in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame?
Anna-Carin Nordin: I am honored.
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What was the most satisfying swim of your career?
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What was the toughest swim of your career?
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: Can you describe your typical weekly schedule, including your swimming workouts and your dryland training?
Anna-Carin Nordin: My weekly schedule is as follows:
Mondays include schools swim lessons, swimming in the open water after my first lesson (1-3 km depends on the temperature), plus 10 km in the afternoon in a 16m pool. I can just use the pool for 3 hours 20 minutes so 10,000 meters is what I have time to swim. The day starts at 8:30 am and ends at 6:00 pm.
Tuesdays include one school swim lesson followed by 4,000m speed training in the 16m pool (when the pool is free for 1 hour 20 minutes). After my swim, I have to wait 1 hour until it is time for two one-hour swim school lessons. The first group is for beginners; the next group is for those who can swim all the strokes, but are learning butterfly between the ages of 7-10 years. The day starts at 10:30 am and ends at 7:30 pm.
Wednesdays are when I can sleep in because I teach only one-hour swim lesson for Muslim women. I can swim 7,000m in the pool which is free 40 minutes before the teacher’s swim time for 2 hours so I can swim a maximum of 7 km. After that, I have two 1-hour swim lessons for people who can swim 100m and are starting to learn breaststroke, and my technique group for students and adults. The day starts at 11:40 am and ends at 8:30 pm.
Thursdays include school swim lessons from 8:30 am and ends with my two swim schools from 4-6 pm with 1 km training in the open water.
Fridays include two school swim lessons that start at 8:30 am and ends at 10:50 pm. If I am not too tired, I do an open water swim after the lessons.
On the weekends, I try to do some open water swim training or go to the gym or I go to Sundsvall 50 km from my house for proper swimming, but now they have closed for the season so now I do not have any other swimming pool to train in except three times a week in the 16m pool.
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: Your son is important to you. Do you and him talk about your different swims?
Anna-Carin Nordin: My son is very important to me. He does understand why I love open water swimming. He went with me to Irish Long Distance Swimming Association anniversary ceremony and got a chance to meet some of my open water friends in Ireland. Erik, my son, told me, ‘I do understand that I love this life.’
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: How do you pick your escort crew members since your swims are all over the world?
Anna-Carin Nordin: I ask the local people to help me out. Or I will ask the Captain if he knows anyone who can help me with my feedings.
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What are your favorite foods and favorite drinks during your marathon swims?
Anna-Carin Nordin: I only eat liquid food and gels while I do my swims. I eat every hour. 2 portions of protein with 2.5 dl of water + a big strawberry gel / 2 potions of oats and whey (2.5 dl water) + a big strawberry gel. In warmer waters, I just ask for more water when I need it. In cold water, we just add some warm water with the powder.
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What kinds of things do you think about during your marathon swims?
Anna-Carin Nordin: The next feeling.
Daily News of Open Water Swimming: What future swims are you thinking about?
Anna-Carin Nordin: Hopefully one big swim every year liked Loch Ness in Scotland, Maratona del Golfo Capri-Napoli in Italy, 8 Bridges Hudson River Swim and 20 Bridges Manhattan Island Swim in New York for the Triple Crown of Open Water Swimming, swim along the Swedish coastline, and swims between all the islands of Hawaii (a dream that I am going to do sooner or later).
“Anna-Carin shows up on coastlines around the world, from Ireland to Japan and is always ready to swim. She is a true adventurer. She doesn’t come with a crew of supporters or anything but her finely tuned mindset and a hardened ability to complete her swims as planned. She smiles, she is gritty, and she is extremely low-maintenance, simply getting the job done with a minimum of fuss and no complaints,” said Steven Munatones. “She is just so tough whether she is swimming in a bumpy sea water or in icy cold pool in a winter swimming competition.”
“Anna-Carin and the other new members of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame emulate those exceptional 269 forerunners already enshrined in the Hall of Fame. Since the class of 1963, our marathon swimming inductees from around the world have received the ultimate marathon swimming recognition. They have been immortalized with their names inscribed on the IMSHOF Sea Goddess, our ‘symbol of the sea’,” explained Chairman Christopher Guesdon.
“When Captain Matthew Webb RN conquered the English Channel in 1875 nobody would have thought such a worldwide movement of marathon swimming would be born and where ethics and morals are paramount in pursuit of a successful marathon. The induction ceremony will be held on March 31st 2018 at The Chapel, Beaumont Estate, Old Windsor, UK.”
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