Henrik Slot Nielsen
Tell me shortly about what you’re going to do and why you do it?
On the 29th of August I am doing a 18 km. charity swim from Bornholm to Christiansø, two Danish islands in the Baltic Sea, to raise awareness how important it is to keep your lungs strong and healthy all of your life. The project leading to this marathon swim is called ‘Swim for Life and Lungs’.
The charity swim is done in co-operation with the Danish Lung Association to raise awareness about one of our most important, but also unnoticed organs: our lungs. The swim and the project will put the spot on how important healthy lungs are for your quality of life. We need to take care of our lungs, and we do that by exercising and move all life long – even if you suffer from a serious lung disease. That is the message that we want to share with a many as possible.
My involvement comes from my personal story. My mother died last year from Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and I witnessed first hand what a cruel disease COPD is. I wish there were more and better ways of helping people suffering from COPD. I want to change that, and I am very glad and extremely proud of the wide support and backing that ‘Swim for Life and Lungs’. Being ambassador for SurfEars is a strong example of the strong support that I experience.
How are you preparing for the swim?
An 18 km open water swimming demands a long and dedicated training effort that started almost one year ago. First indoor building up strength and kilometers, improving technique in the pool. Late May when the sea water was warm enough I moved my training into the open sea. Now I am swimming longer distances and intervals. My training will peak with a long-distance swim of 16 km. Along with my training physical training I have also worked dedicated with the mental preparation and strength with my coach Anders Glümer and world champion free-diver Jesper Stechmann.
I have always loved swimming and it has always been a part of my life. After high school I worked a couple of summers as life guard and from then on I have been swimming on a regular basis. To med open water swimming brings great outdoor experiences that you don’t get in the pool.
The best thing with ocean swimming?
Having done open water swimming in 5 years I can say that best thing about ocean swimming or open water swimming is that every swim is unique: the color of the water, the temperature, the wind and current, the wildlife, your companions and your own mood.
Check out ‘Swim for Life and Lungs’ on Facebook www.facebook.com/SvoemForLivOgLunger.