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Ben Beard Is on a Quest to Assist Others by Swimming the English Channel

Proper now, 35-year-old Ben Beard of Las Cruces, NM, is busy managing his house building and gross sales firm, whereas additionally juggling intense prep for the problem of a lifetime. Beard is elevating cash with a purpose to assist younger individuals attain their academic and enterprise potential, and can bravely swim the English Channel in help of The Grant Cardone Basis. Impressed, and wanting to learn the way the enterprise man, and father of 4, is preparing for such an epic problem, M&F took a ‘deep dive’ into his motivations and coaching forward of this final check of energy and endurance.

Swimming the English Channel is not any imply feat. The slim 21 mile (32 kilometer) stretch of water, between the southern coast of England and the northern fringe of France endures changeable climate and as such, completion instances fluctuate wildly because of the particular person athlete’s personal means and the unpredictable setting that they need to battle by way of. The common swim time, nonetheless, is 13 hours, 33 minutes, and 54 seconds whereas a report of 6 hours and 55 minutes has been held by Australia’s Trent Grimsey since 2012.

So then, the primary query is straightforward: What attracts an expert man like Beard to throw himself into the deep finish like this? “I first learn Grant Cardone’s books; ‘The 10X Rule’ and ‘Be Obsessed or Be Common’ in 2017,” he says. “At the moment, I used to be getting ready to start out my enterprise; Purple Cliff Properties. I had approached some land sellers with a small concept to get my enterprise began. Then, after their lukewarm reception, I spotted that possibly I wanted to go greater to make the deal extra enticing to them, so I actually adopted the teachings I had learn, and multiplied by pitch by 10. This led to me getting began alone within the house constructing enterprise, and allowed me to scale up rapidly, closing 27 properties my first yr in enterprise.”

Having gained a lot perception from the Grant Cardone Basis, a non-profit group that goals to supply profession steerage and academic assets, notably to the younger and weak, Beard felt the necessity to pay it ahead, and set himself a goal of elevating $50,000 for the trigger. Right here’s how he’s gone from land developer to lengthy distance swimmer.

Swimmer Ben Beard standing in the middle of a road
Ben Beard

Rekindling Previous Passions

Ben Beard selected to swim the English Channel, partially, as a method to rekindle an previous ardour. Effectively, they do say that you must observe your internal compass! He started swimming in highschool the place, initially, he wasn’t a fan of distance swimming however having caught with it, additionally conserving a toe in throughout school, Beard realized that entering into the water was not simply a good way to remain in bodily form, as he felt a variety of psychological advantages too. “I benefit from the likelihood to close out the world and simply swim,” he says. “It’s sort of like meditation for me, with the possibility to clear my head whereas working my physique to the purpose of exhaustion. Chilly water provides to the head-clearing facet of swimming and likewise tends to make me hyper conscious of my physique, in order that I can give attention to which muscle groups are sore and any slight inner temperature adjustments that my physique goes by way of throughout lengthy swims.”

Via his current coaching, Beard says that he’s discovered that swimming the channel isn’t purely a bodily problem, noting that additionally it is “about psychological toughness to face up to the chilly, the monotony, and loneliness.”


Placing within the Hours

The entrepreneur gained’t be rocking as much as the English Channel unprepared and has been coaching for 3-years to make this swim regardless of the calls for of a busy day job. Lengthy distance swimming requires nice stamina and cardio vascular conditioning. “I preserve a working whole of hours swam every month in my planner, to guarantee that I’m staying on observe with my coaching targets,” he says. “I’ve had a number of journey for work over the previous couple of months, so I’ve needed to be diligent about wanting forward of time for locations to swim whereas on work journeys. Many gyms supply a brief trial interval, and this has been very useful, and native metropolis recreation amenities are additionally nice locations to coach more often than not. I additionally carry working garments with me to get in a run if I gained’t have the ability to swim. Final week, I received caught in dangerous climate whereas flying and ended up having an sudden 7-hour layover. The late arrival that night time meant that I’d not have the ability to swim earlier than my work conferences, so I modified garments within the airport lavatory, discovered a non-public spot to stash my luggage, and went on a 2-mile run within the airport!”

Making the Weight

“I discovered after signing-up that marathon swimming just isn’t a 6-pack and ripped muscle groups sort of sport,” says Beard. “Most profitable channel swimmers are pretty heavy, and those who aren’t will usually have to placed on weight with a purpose to stand up to the cold-water temperatures; anticipated to be roughly 60 F on the time of my swim. So, I’ve been deliberately gaining weight over the past yr.”

Since Beard is swimming loads in his coaching, he’s burning a ton of energy, so gaining weight is a problem. He’s countered this with “calorie restoration” meals after lengthy swims. He may also want to determine what he’ll eat throughout his English Channel swim, with a purpose to keep power ranges. Whereas endeavor the problem, Beard can have a ship pilot and group that may get feeds to him. These feeds can differ relying on people tastes, and a few swimmers go for liquid dietary supplements, however the principle factor is that the meals ought to be straightforward to seize and devour. “Over the previous couple of months, I’ve been experimenting with totally different meals for my ‘feeds’ through the swim,” he says. “I’ve settled on re-fried black beans, with a number of additional butter, in addition to calorie dense mashed potatoes, each of which can be sucked out of pouches like these designed for feeding a child. Potatoes are very excessive in potassium, and with the combo of beans and potatoes I’ll have a mixture of proteins and slower burning, longer-lasting carbs. I’ll additionally add in a small sweet bar for these brief, fast bursts of sugar after I really want it. Throughout coaching, I drink a mixture of plain water and electrolyte drinks however through the channel swim, electrolytes aren’t as essential as a consequence of being surrounded by salt water. So, I’ll drink scorching chocolate for each the added warmth, in addition to the additional sugar content material.”

In search of Knowledgeable Recommendation

Beard is attacking this English Channel swim in the identical method that he plans a housing growth, by utilizing knowledgeable recommendation and information to achieve the absolute best outcome. He’s regularly difficult the gap that he can swim within the harsh components and has additionally sought perception from those who have gone earlier than him. “Once I set the purpose in 2019, my spouse received me a e book written by a profitable English Channel swimmer: ‘Hold Calm and Swim to France: Tales of an English Channel Swimmer’ by Mark Ransom,” he says. “Then, in June 2022, I accomplished a swim throughout Bear Lake in northern Utah as a part of my coaching. My information on that swim was a former English Channel swimmer, Joelle Brown-Beard (no relation) whom I related with on Fb. From Joelle I received some nice recommendation round upping my coaching. Once I swam with Joelle, I anticipated that the lake crossing could be 6 miles and take round three hours. But it surely really took 6 hours to swim 6.9 miles. The water was 54ºF, in order that was part of my slower than anticipated time however it additionally gave me a wake-up name that you want to significantly prepare for some of these swims.”

Since then, Beard has ramped as much as the place he’s now often swimming 10-12 hours per week. one to 1.5 hours on a weekday, and 5 to six-plus hours on Saturdays. With 3 years of coaching beneath his belt, Beard now considers himself to be a complicated swimmer however all the time bear in mind: You will need to search skilled recommendation and supervision when endeavor lengthy distance swims.

His English Channel swim is scheduled for June 8-15, dependant on climate and tidal circumstances, and The Channel Swimming Affiliation may also be available, to look at the swim and guarantee that it’s ratified.

“My essential goal is to efficiently full the swim, irrespective of how lengthy it takes,” says Beard. “I’m not doing this to set a report or change into an expert marathon swimmer, however to finish a life purpose. It doesn’t must look fairly, I simply must get it carried out. I’ll be thrilled it doesn’t matter what my time is!”

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