Diana Nyad: Never, Ever Give Up


diana nyad never give upI have to admit, I didn’t know much about Diana Nyad before yesterday. But as news updates kept popping up on my screen about her Cuba-to-Key West swim, I became increasingly interested and inspired.

When it was reported she could be the first person to complete the swim without a shark cage, I admired her bravery.

When she persevered despite exhaustion, dehydration, swelling and sunburn, I shook my head in awe.

And when I found out she is 64-years-old and has tried this feat four times before, I immediately thought… “she should be the poster child (woman) of Green Mountain at Fox Run.”

Nyad’s previous tries were cut short because of boat trouble, storms, unfavorable currents and jellyfish stings that left her face puffy and swollen. And yet, despite these “failed” attempts, she tried again.

How is this journey much different than a woman who has “failed” diets her entire life? Yes, I get that it’s not an exact parallel. But similar in many ways.

The self-defeat, negative self talk, the way we think we “should” look — these are the sharks, venomous jellyfish and storms that we have to navigate to end our struggles with eating and weight. And sometimes, they feel insurmountable.

But despite what history told her and what her birth certificate said, Diana knew she could make the 110-mile journey. And that’s what should help us remember that it’s never too late to think bravely, act boldly and believe in possibility.

We can reach our goals. In spite of how many times we’ve tried before and perhaps failed, Diana Nyad has shown us that we can live the life we want – whether it’s walking 2 miles, overcoming binge eating, or developing a positive body image.

When she finished and came ashore, the very first things she said were we should never, ever give up and we’re never too old to chase our dreams

Thank you, Diana, for this important reminder.

How has Diana Nyad inspired you?

4 responses to “Diana Nyad: Never, Ever Give Up”

  1. Britney Johnson says:

    This is a very inspiring article. It’s great to compare Diana’s swimming struggles to people like me having typical weight loss struggles. Just like Diana, I should persevere even though there are a lot of obstacles. In the end, she did it! Nothing is impossible if you believe in yourself! 😀

  2. Lisa says:

    Thanks Britney. She is incredibly inspirational – what a story! Helps to remember that dreams don’t happen overnight, sometimes they take years, but almost always take dedication, perseverance, and an unwavering belief in yourself.

  3. beverlydame says:

    I’m 68. Started the Couch to 5K running program this summer and am now running 30 minutes three times a week. Usually run in the morning but yesterday it was pouring. Played bridge in the afternoon. Had been tracking the Nyad story. As soon as the others left I put on my shoes and did the run even with thundershowers looming. If she can, maybe I can…

    Think it is also important to remember that she had a team behind her. She did the swimming but they charted the course, removed jellyfish from her path, kept her fed and hydrated. We need to develop our own support team whether it is for healthy eating, sticking to exercise. That team can include the people at Green Mountain and their advice and counsel.


    • Lisa says:

      Beverly, you are so right about the support team. I chose not to focus on that, but she was very quick to acknowledge her team and that she couldn’t have done it without them. So true for weight struggles as well – you need those people who will inspire you, support you, let you vent, hold you accountable, etc. Congratulations on becoming a runner! At 68, nonetheless!

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