Hardcore Swim of the Week: 64 Year-Old Diana Nyad Swims From Cuba To Florida In Less Than 53 Hours

Tony Carroll
by Tony Carroll 5

September 07th, 2013 News, Open Water

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The HardCoreSwim of the week goes to Diana Nyad, for her 110 mile swim at 64 years old! Nyad became the first person to ever swim from Havana, Cuba to Key West, Florida without the aid of a shark cage.

Nyad finished the 110 mile swim successfully in just under 53 hours and was able to walk up the beach without assistance. Her official time: 52 hours, 54 minutes 18.6 seconds.

After initial shock and awe of her record, many folks have chirped up questioning the validity of the record, English channel rules, shark divers, and jellyfish masks. All of those facts are terribly relevant to whether or not the open water community accepts this as a “record,” and should not be diminished.

None of that, however, has any bearing on how hardcore this swim was. Yes she had a jellyfish mask, but that mask was incredibly uncomfortable, and impaired her breathing. Her shoulders hurt within the first few hours. She’s 64 years old! She swam as many miles without holding a wall, standing on the bottom, or pushing off as even mega yardage teams like the Florida Gators do in a week. Record qualifications are entirely a valid subject for debate and argument but whether or not this swim was HardCore is not.

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Screen Shot 2013-04-01 at 1.06.31 PMFounded on the pool decks of Southern California, HARDCORESWIM examines and explores the ethos of the hardcore swimmer. HARDCORESWIM is an authentic and innovative designer, marketer and manufacturer of premium quality men’s and women’s swimsuits, Custom Team Swim Suits, training gear, clothing, accessories and related products. Our true, authentic, innovative, iconoclastic, and creative style differentiates us from the bland competitive swim industry and gives us reason to be. All made in the USA. Check us out at www.hardcoreswim.com or find us at www.facebook.com/hardcoreswim .

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The real hardcore swim


No doubt about it, that swim was eccentrically, exponentially, and existentially HARDCORE! Great article that placed the Hardcoreness of the swim in a class by itself, amid all the hoopla.


completelyconquered – I think it’s a good theory, but it makes a very significant, unproven leap that all of the reporting signals were at an even interval. I wouldn’t think it holds much weight until someone gets verification that these assumptions are fact. If someone did so, then it could get very interesting.


According to some news stories she was going nearly 4 mph at one point. That’s REALLY fast. I have to admit I’m a bit skeptical at this point.

Also, she said a bunch of really dumb things after Fran Crippen died.

About Tony Carroll

Tony Carroll

The writer formerly known as "Troy Gennaro", better known as Tony Carroll, has been working with SwimSwam since April of 2013. Tony grew up in northern Indiana and started swimming in 2003 when his dad forced him to join the local swim team. Reluctantly, he joined on the condition that …

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