Pugh shares his experiences

Published Date: 
Friday, June 21, 2013
Northglen Community

Pugh shares his experiences                                                                                          By Michelle Dennis

Lewis Pugh is a remarkable man. He is the first person to complete a long distance swim in every ocean of the world and has pioneered more swims around famous land marks than anyone else.

He has swam across the icy waters of the North Pole to highlight the melting of the Artic Sea ice, and across a glacial lake on Mount Everest to draw attention to the impact of climate change on the Himalayan glaciers. It was there that he met his first yak.

If you wanted to read a no-frills inspirational book, steeped in the real life experiences of Lewis Puhl braving icy waters, his new book, 21 Yaks And A Speedo,is the one to choose.

He cleverly uses a poignant moment of each experience to teach a like-message. For example Yak 3 (chapter 3) is titled: Escape and there is a little explanation: Sometimes escape is not an option. It’s a necessity. “Or, Yak 16 titled: Plan gives the following explanation: Never plan for victory and defeat in your mind at the same time.” Because his life lessons are based on hard-core, grueling swims in temperatures that cause, especially us Durbanites, literal shivers, they are believable and motivational.

The book is written simply, but is profound as his cause is saving the environment, appreciating and looking after what we’ve got.

He is tall, softly-spoken, has a rather demure demeanor, and kind eyes. When he speaks, people listen because he exudes sincerity. And on can only, in any event admire the man who swims in extreme temperatures, in treacherous seas, donned only in a speedo, googles, and a range of technology. He wears a watch on his wrist, a monitor strapped around his chest which has an antenna that sticks out the back, a cable running from this to a phone-sized receiver strapped to his ear.

The receiver is connected to a plastic rectal thermometer to measure his core temperature while he is swimming. This equipment sends signals to a laptop computer, with often, well known Professor Tim Noakes, monitoring the vital signs.

This book is both an inspiration and very interesting as Lewis takes you to isolated places and shares the planning and how he is feeling. Along the journey. He dreams big, overcomes psychological obstacles and his strategies can be applied to both business and personal development.