My love affair with the sea began through learning about myself as a swimmer, learning acceptance of self exactly as I am, and learning from the signs of life in a world completely unfamiliar to me. Each day when I look out towards the sea, I see something new to behold. I see the embrace…… Continue reading Every day I go in the water, I make sure I tell it, I love you.
There’s no other way to start this blog post than to say this swim was for you. This swim was to celebrate community. My swim community. My open water buddies and my pool lane mates, family and friends near and far. All of you who have helped me achieve my goals, who have inspired others…… Continue reading The Amy Hiland Double Swim: Celebrating Community, Discovery, and the Puget Sound
I swam an ice mile. A mile in 41F/5C water or below and yes, it was cold. Really cold. Snowman status cold. I’ve been wracking my head around it, trying to think of what to write that is more meaningful than what I’m about to say. After all, it was a huge accomplishment that I…… Continue reading The Ice Mile: It was cold and I loved it!!!
A very good friend and human being whom I respect dearly once posted a picture with the caption “The swimming equivalent of ‘always play tennis with players who are better than you.’ ” This phrase has been at the forefront of my mind the past three days as my initial plan at an ice mile…… Continue reading Swimming the Enchantments: There’s a new lake filled with love, respect, trust, and kindness
It’s hard to express how much I enjoyed the Change Your Latitude – 57˚ N Challenge, one of the northernmost open water swims. The swim itself, a combined 10k/6k/3k/1k open water swim located in beautiful Sitka, Alaska and organized by Baranof Barracuda Swim Club, is fantastic in itself because of how inclusive the event is.…… Continue reading Swimming Alaska: Adventure, Excitement, Vulnerability, and Solitude in Nature
Someone has to go first. I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately, about the experiences I’ve had outdoors in the water and in the mountains. I’ve been thinking about my friends who have dared to dream, who are now role models for others because they decided to take the first step into the unknown.…… Continue reading Paving the Path: Someone has to go first
The past several years have been an incredible journey. I’ve swam across the United States and around the world. I’ve met people of all different backgrounds and cultures, learning about their daily lives, dreams, and desires. I’ve watched as friends reframed thoughts on their potential and witnessed them achieve goals then raise the bar higher.…… Continue reading Marathon Swimming Meets the Greater Lansing Area Sports Hall of Fame
Swim flop. That pretty much sums up my most recent adventure into the mountains. However, things are not always as they seem. While I (cough, cough), didn’t swim on this trip, I learned a ton about my solo comfort level in the backcountry mountain snow in search of a winter swimming paradise, the reality of…… Continue reading Winter Backcountry Hike-in Swimming: When experience is in deficit, make smart decisions and learn
It’s been a while, but I’ve been taking my break from swimming very seriously and enjoying life, my new found love for salt and vinegar potato chips, sleeping in, and not feeling pressure to do anything. What I’ve been most excited about is exploring new swim locations and dabbling with some ideas the mountains have…… Continue reading Wandering Washington is Here!
Join me on August 15, 2018 for the Thinkspace Grit+Resilience talk in Seattle! Super excited to be speaking about open water swimming, balancing professional success and personal passion, and how my journey to the Triple Crown parallels the entrepreneurial spirit. It’ll be a great talk, open question session, and mingle. RSVP to the Thinkspace Grit+Resilience meetup invite.…… Continue reading Join me August 15th in Seattle for Grit+Resilience!
New York, the Big Apple, the city that never sleeps, the Big Flipper (at least that’s what I like to call it). This is the city where you can dream big, where anything can happen, and anything is exactly what happened. New York was the last leg of the Triple Crown, an open water swimming…… Continue reading 20 Bridges Manhattan Island Marathon Swim: Drop expectations and just swim
Body transformation is an amazing thing and for me it all started with a pink sprinkled doughnut. To see yourself physically look one way and then to see yourself physically look another way….. hold up, I bet you’re thinking about weight loss. A body transformation where you work hard to reduce your size, reduce your…… Continue reading Body Image II: Pink Sprinkled Doughnuts, Let the Frosting do the Talking
The countdown is on to New York and I’ll be the first to admit that it’s felt like a rough go this training year. Don’t get me wrong, I’m going to finish no matter what, but it will be a challenge! For so many reasons my swim, work, and personal schedule hasn’t been as optimal…… Continue reading One More Wave: Helping Veterans and Surfers by Swimming around Manhattan Island
Inspiration is a funny thing. It can come from anyone, anywhere, and at any time. This year I was fortunate enough to be awarded the VO2 Inspirational Person of the Year Award for the 2017 season. I’ve spoken on so many occasions this year about my English Channel swim, marathon swimming, training plans, health and…… Continue reading Inspiration: Heart, Commitment, Pursuit and Story
Here we go again, 2018 begins with a bang as we start preparation and planning for 20 Bridges on June 30th! Top of the list of announcements is my new partnership with Skratch Labs as a Skratch Ambassador for the 2018 season, a huge season, which I am hoping will round out the Triple Crown…… Continue reading Kickoff to 2018: Skratch Labs in my 20 Bridges Go-Bags!
How do you plan for an event that you knew going into it you wouldn’t be performing at your best? You go into it confident in the love of your sport and make an enjoyment plan instead of a performance plan. That is exactly what I did, I planned on enjoying Swim the Suck, enjoying…… Continue reading Swim the Suck: What happens when performance and enjoyment are removed from the equation? We learn.
What is your purpose? I challenge people to really think about that question. Not discuss it with others or bounce ideas of one another, but really think about the things they are doing in life, their beliefs, the relationships they have, their emotional connections and how they all align. Do they align with what you…… Continue reading Scoops of Sherbet: What is your purpose? (a serious, not serious post)
There comes a point in time during a marathon swim where you mind goes blank. There isn’t a single thought running through your mind, everything is clear, more clear than it has ever been. Your body is on autopilot, you don’t think about what you are doing, you don’t even realize you are in the…… Continue reading Under the Stars: My Journey Swimming the English Channel
What a trip, what a journey and it’s not even begun! I’ve been in Dover, England for a little over a week and it has been a beautiful, humbling, frustrating, amazing and wonderful experience that is just beginning. The travel to Dover took about 22 hours between car, flight, luggage transfer, layovers, but we arrived…… Continue reading England to France: The Beautiful Wait Begins….
Sunday’s swim at Alki, while brutal conditions wise was also a total dream come true. Why? I received the “seal” of approval as my toes were kissed by a seal! I’m pretty sure it was my seal friend Rufus, who I’ve been working on building a relationship with over the past year. Regardless, it was…… Continue reading Getting the “Seal” of Approval
As we head into open water season for many swimmers and triathletes, there is always a certain amount of angst that builds before that first dip. What is in there? How cold is it going to be? I don’t want to see the fish, are there fish in there? Where’s the bottom? What if something…… Continue reading Open Water: Fall in Love with Exploring the Unknown
Food, an immediate joy and satisfaction for my taste buds, belly and mind. I love food, I always have. I remember one of my first loves, the Cadbury Crème Egg. Every Easter our family went down to Valhalla Park where they had the egg hunt for the kids. Back then they had hard boiled eggs…… Continue reading They Cook Joy, They Cook Breakfast!
The relationship between athlete and coach is a special relationship, a different kind of relationship that evolves over time, and I firmly believe that the athlete and coach must be the right fit for each other. Coaching is a very selective process, at least it is for me anyway. I’ve had coaches since I started…… Continue reading Coaching and the Drive to be a Better Me
Today I had an interesting experience while doing my strength training. Let’s face it, I run hot. I think it hit (dare I say it) 50 degrees outside and I was sweating like a stuffed pig within five minutes of starting my back rows. My brow was beading up, a drip ran down the side…… Continue reading Open Water, Body Image, Salads & Pink Sprinkled Doughnuts
There’s a lot of trust that goes into lap swimming. I swam with someone new the other evening and as I swam I realized how much anxiety I have swimming with someone new in an unorganized setting. As we had a near massive collision during a turn off the wall, I was immediately thankful for…… Continue reading The Great Collide: Lane Mate Trust
What an amazing day filled with fun, friends and swimming for The 100x100s Swimtacular, a fundraiser for my English Channel attempt in August of 2017. After months of planning, I was so excited the night before I could hardly sleep. I woke up extra early to double check everything, make sure I had everything packed,…… Continue reading The 100x100s Swimtacular Fundraiser Recap: A Day of Smiles, Swimming and Friends
Let’s start off with the indescribable feeling of how excited I was! Walking down to the dock at 7pm the night of the swim, the warm southern California breeze, Bobby the seal eating fish off a boat, smiles, handshakes, pelicans gliding in the water…. Ah, what a night it will be! We all settle into…… Continue reading Race Report: Catalina Channel Swim, Just Close your Eyes
I was swimming the other evening, the sun was out, the water a beautiful sea green, I look down and there was a what looked like a reflection of the sun in the water. What was it? A jellyfish that was so beautiful it is hard to describe. The center was yellow as a canary…… Continue reading A Different Point-of-View: Jellyfish
I had a toughy swim set today, 40 x 100 test set on the 1:35, holding pace through the set. It’s funny how some sets (as miserable as they seem at the time) are nostalgic in a way. I remembered my high school days swimming a very similar test set, the hour before a swim…… Continue reading Coaching Greats
The good, hardly any bad, and most likely inappropriate for FB. The day started and ended beautiful, perfect weather, perfectly calm water, sunshine galore and a rockin’ tan to boot! Thank to Panama Jack clear zinc sunscreen, no burn whatsoever. Also thank you to Vaseline, only one small chafe mark, which I consider a great…… Continue reading Race Report: Great Salt Lake 10K
Adult Learn-to-Swim, the gut wrenching scenario… It’s a beautiful, sunny afternoon, taking a late lunch on the beach with the soft break of the lake on the sand. The perfect silence is broken by a splash and then harrowing screams of a mother. Her child is frantically splashing without control a few yards off the…… Continue reading The Importance of Adult Learn-to-Swim Month
I’m alive, my nail polish stayed on and I have a wicked tan! Now for the race report….. The day started out okay, thanks to all of your prayers and good wishes, I could 90% breathe this morning, yay! I got to the start line, checked in, had the pre-race safety report and headed out…… Continue reading Race Report: 8-Mile Swim 4 Freedom
Today was a reminder of why I love the sea more so than the land. I went for a nice relaxed 5K stretch out swim today during low, super low, tide. The water was Slurpee cold, winter clear, and beautiful glistening turquoise blue. As I swam along the drop-off ridge, I watched the kelp slide…… Continue reading Why I love ocean swimming?