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Man Swims the Amazon: Makes Swimming Cool

In: News

Posted By: The Booze at 1:38 pm

25 Aug 2009

Mirror.co.uk - He’s middle-aged, his ample belly bulges over his Speedos… and he thinks drinking two bottles of wine a day keeps him in shape. Swimmer Martin Strel would be the first to admit he makes the unlikeliest of athletes.

But the 55-year-old harddrinking Slovenian just happens to be the greatest endurance swimmer in the world… ever. He claimed the title by conquering the world’s most dangerous river – the Amazon – swimming 3,274 miles in 66 days, non-stop.

“It helps to be a little crazy, to do what I do,” Martin admits. “I told myself that I would swim the Amazon or I would die trying. ”I’m a big man, sure, but the Amazon is so much bigger.”

The astonishing story of courage and determination is the subject of a new movie, Big River Man, which opens across the UK next month.

I have always thought of men’s swimming as a pussy sport. You see, when I judge a male sport I always look for certain criteria to be met. One of these criteria is that the male version of the sport be more exciting to watch than the female version (not taking into account the attractiveness of the females).  I do not see that definitive difference in the competition level when it comes to swimming. I’d actually rather watch a female blur in the water than a dude in a speedo.

However, after reading this story I realize what the sport is missing. This man has remarkably made swimming into a manly test of ambition. Jumping into the world’s 2nd longest river takes courage. Having to fight off piranhas and alligators along the way while drunk on wine has finally given swimming the credibility it was lacking.

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