The Big Question: How Do You Swim in Really Cold Water?
“I have very well-distributed body fat that helps keep me insulated. I also have a lot of muscle mass that I’ve worked really hard to develop. It gives me power and strength; it’s also the energy factory that creates the heat to keep me warm. If I were just a big person, I wouldn’t do as well in cold water. Beyond all that, it’s mental attitude: wanting to do it, really desiring to try something extraordinary.
“A lot of people are like, ‘She doesn’t feel the cold.’ I feel the cold! But the focus isn’t on ‘Oh, it’s cold!’ You feel it, but then you get in it and the focus is on movement, on processing information — on the texture of the water, the color, the saltiness of it, the way the cloud patterns move across the surface. All this water memory comes back to me, and I relax.”