Nyad swim inspires Portlanders to stay fit

KEY WEST, Fl. -- Diana Nyad s historic swim from Cuba to Key West inspired many in the Northwest and around the world.

One of the people who understood Nyad's sacrifices and accomplishment well was Michelle Macy.

The 31-year-old lives in Beaverton and recently became the first American woman to complete the Oceans Seven Challenge, featuring endurance swims around the world.

I think it s amazing! To have that determination and gumption to keep going after it after all these years and going back to 1978, her 5th attempt, Ihave nothing but admiration for her, Macy said.

She believes Nyad s swim sends a message about overcoming failure. I think that failure is, you know, part of life. And that from each failure you can learn and it s not a bad thing. I think a lot of people don t go after things because they're afraid to fail, said Macy.

The 64-year-old Nyad said she hoped to inspire people that they are never too old to go after their dreams.

Dave Radcliff from the Portland area is a living example of that. At 79, he holds several national and world records for endurance swimming. Yeah we are kind of, we hope, role models for other people that you can stay active. You don t have to be a couch potato, Radcliff said.

The message resonates with athletes like Joe Johnson. The 71-year old works out at the East Portland Community Center. Diana, she should inspire everybody. There is no age limit. I mean, I don t see age, he said.

Dan Wilson, a 67-year-old working out with weights at the center agreed.

I would say what it does for me is to inspire me to stay with the program and stay consistent, said Wilson.


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