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Blog guest: Jelena Dedajic

Marathon swimmer, Jelena Dedajic, as a Swimming Dad #Blog guest, explains how she prepared for the long races, and how the endurance and perseverance helped her not only in her swimming career but also in her life. Jelena has had many long races in her career, and some of them are 2015 FINA World Cup in Abu Dhabi, and 30km swimming marathon in Ohrid, Macedonia in 2010.

How much did marathon swimming helped you not to give up in life, no matter how difficult it was? Marathon swimming is one of the basic Olympic sports that requires a lot of sacrifices from an athlete. The key elements are self-discipline and hard work, that make any professional athlete psychophysically tough. In that way you are prepared to win many both sport and life battles, where every day is full of uncertainties. 

What is more important for the long races, physical or mental preparation? Both links, mental and physical prepare a marathon swimmer. They are intertwined and compatible, and it’s crucial that you keep them balanced in order to achieve top-quality results. Big results require great swimming and endurance preparations. Sometimes I used to swim up to 15km a day on top of my workout at the gym.  For such intense efforts, as in any professional sport, good and balanced diet is very important. The right ratio of carbs, fats, proteins is essential in order to provide the body of a marathon swimmer with enough energy and physical endurance.

On the other hand, perseverance and commitment to achieve a certain goal are the strongest elements of success!

What was your longest, and what was the most challenging marathon you swam? The longest, and at the same time the most challenging swimming marathon that I took part in was the Ohrid Swimming Marathon in 2010, which was 30km long and was a part of the FINA World Cup. I ended up sixth with the time of 6:17:50 competing againstsome of the best European and world marathon swimmers.

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