The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Diana Nyad

DianaLong-distance swimmer, Diana Nyad, caught the public’s eye in 1975 when she broke a speed record by swimming the 28 miles around Manhattan in under 8 hours. In 1978, her dream was to swim from Cuba to Florida, but she failed on her first attempt. She continued to break world records and retired from swimming at age 30. Diana became a television and radio broadcaster, author, and motivational speaker.

After her mother’s death, Diana reached age 60 feeling “closer to the end than to the beginning.” So she recommitted to pursuing her dream of swimming from Cuba to Florida and resumed long-distance training. In September 2013, on her fifth attempt, Diana reached her goal by swimming the 104 miles in 53 hours at age 64 (without a shark cage)! See the The Other Shore film trailer here

Diana Nyad Quotes:

• You never are too old to chase your dreams.
• You can’t start to get into negative spaces…telling yourself it hurts too much, maybe another day… because even people with an iron will [can] talk themselves out of stuff and quit when things get tough.
• All of us suffer heartaches and difficulties in our lives. If you say to yourself, ‘find a way,’ you’ll make it through.
• Life is not over at this age [64] by any means.
• I believe endurance grows and we can never discount the mental…the powers of concentration and perspective of what it all means. What you are capable of is infinitely higher at this age [64] than when you are a young twenty-something.
• So many people discuss the journey and the destination. The destination was always my vision. The journey that took me several years was thrilling. The discovery, the people, and the looking inside at what you’re made of made reaching the destination euphoric.
• Whenever you’re pushing through the tough moments, find a way. If something is important to you and it looks impossible and you’re up against it, step back for a minute and ask yourself if you have the resolve to think of every -nth degree to get through this. And most times, we do.
• I wanted to teach myself some life lessons at the age of 60 and one of them was that you don’t give up.
• I am willing to put myself through anything; temporary pain or discomfort means nothing to me as long as I can see that the experience will take me to a new level. I am interested in the unknown, and the only path to the unknown is through breaking barriers, an often painful process.

Diana Nyad’s website has links to her blog and to videos, including TED talks, so that you may enjoy the fuller experience of this Quotable Nerdy Chick. She is also a contributing writer to the Huffington Post.

3 comments on “The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Diana Nyad

  1. Diane Nyad is such an inspiration! Jen Malone blogged about how inspiring Diane’s accomplishment is for anyone–writers as well as swimmers: http://writersrumpus.com/2013/09/06/just-keep-swimming/

    • Mary Zisk says:

      Marianne, Thanks for the link to Jen’s post! I’m in that submission-rejection cloud, so that’s why I was so drawn to Diana’s words of inspiration and determination, especially “You never are too old to chase your dreams.” I better keep swimming.

  2. […] ← The Quotable Nerdy Chick: Diana Nyad […]

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