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Sarah Thomas Does 56 Hour 5 Minute Lake Powell Swim

Photos courtesy of Andrew Malinak, Marathon Swimmers Federation, California.

With online viewers from around the world looking on, a Desitin– and lanolin-covered Sarah Thomas steadily and powerfully walked up a boat dock on Wahweap Marina in Lake Powell along the Arizona-Utah border in the western United States.

She not only spoke calmly to her supporters, but she also had enough energy to jump up and down in joy as she walked up the dock.

The Coloradoan summarized her swim, “The first night was by far the worse. Then the next day, it was pretty bad and miserable when the winds came up [to 20 mph]. It was pretty bad. I was not having fun. I didn’t sign up for miserable.

My legs are a little tingling now, but my blood pressure is great and my heart rate is 85.

I am hungry. Normally, I am an ice cream girl. I think I need meat. But that risotto was the most amazing thing I had. I was so good. Who knew? It was warm and savory. Around hour 30 was when I needed it.

I had some dark moments. I only had one melt-down; it was building for a while. But, all night long, I could not have done this without every single one of this team. I appreciate it.”

Her swim enabled her to crack the Top 10 in the global 24-Hour Club, listed below by the length of time in the water.

1. John Sigmund (USA) 292 miles (470 km) down the Mississippi River (Missouri, USA) in 1940 in 89 hours 46 minutes
2. Pedro A Candiotti (Argentina) 281 miles (452 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1935 in 84 hours 0 minutes
3. Pedro A Candiotti (Argentina) 205 miles (330 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1943 in 74 hours 30 minutes
4. Charles Zibelman (USA) 288 miles (463 km) downstream in the Hudson River (USA) in 1938 in 74 hours 0 minutes
5. Pedro A Candiotti (Argentina) 211 miles (339 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1931 in 71 hours 55 minutes
6. Pedro A Candiotti (Argentina) 210 miles (337 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1930 in 66 hours 15 minutes
7. Vicki Keith (Canada) 49.8 miles (80.2 km, all butterfly) crossing of Lake Ontario (Canada) in 2005 in 63 hours 40 minutes
8. Abdul Latif Abou Heif (Egypt) 285 miles (458 km) downstream in River de la Plata (Argentina) in 1970 in 60 hours 0 minutes
9. Vicki Keith (Canada) 64 miles (103 km) in a two-way crossing of Lake Ontario (Canada) in 1987 in 56 hours 10 minutes
10. Sarah Thomas (USA) 81.8 miles (131.6 km) in Lake Powell in 2016 in 56 hours 5 minutes

The team included her husband and crew chief Ryan Willis, observers Andrew Malinak and Suzie Dods, co-pilots Jamie Patrick and Karl Kingery, co-navigators Scott Olson and John Baxter, as well as crew members Becky Powell, Melody Maxson, Jack Nuanes, Alice Barton, Ken Classen, and Alex Thomas.

For additional articles on Thomas, read the following:

* Thomas Tribe Takes On Tough Trial
* Sarah Starts Swimming…131.6 km…
* After 24 Hours, Sarah Thomas Over Halfway In Lake Powell
*Sarah Thomas Is Beyond Incredible
*Sarah Thomas Does 56 Hour 5 Minute Lake Powell Swim
*The Brilliance And Creativity Of Sarah Thomas
*Sarah Thomas On Swimming 56+ Hours In Lake Powell

Copyright © 2016 by World Open Water Swimming Association

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