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Ella Foote meets Ruth Fitzmaurice, author of I Found My Tribe, for a swim at Kenwood Ladies Pond on Hampstead Heath
Ella and Ruth at the Ladies Pond

Many swimming stories are not really about swimming at all, they are about our lives around the water. The people we meet, the fears we face, lessons hard learnt and victories we achieve. Most victories are more personal and private – not winning the race or getting the best time – but surviving and letting swimming guide us through the choppy waters of life.

Ruth Fitzmaurice’s new book, I Found My Tribe isn’t really about swimming; it is about how her relationship with the water has enriched her relationship with herself and how it has helped her navigate life with five children, a grumpy Basset Hound and her husband Simon, who has Motor Neurone Disease (MND). “I call myself a dipper,” says Ruth. “On a good day in the summer I will have a three dip day. Diving off of rocks, circling around and diving in again. I don’t have the mass or muscles for serious swimming – I am just happy dipping.”

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About Outdoor Swimmer

Meeting our readers at events and swims over the summer, I have been struck by how you are never too old (or young) to have a swimming adventure. I hope that the inspiring stories between these covers inspire you to take on your own swimming challenges. In this issue we look at how you can improve your pacing by taking your training outside, long-term contributor Terry Laughlin writes powerfully about how he has kept swimming through his cancer treatment, we meet ultra swimming legend Jaimie Monahan and Becky Horsbrugh’s 80-year-old mum proves that it is never too late to take to the open water. Plus, a new wildlife column, nutrition, training, wild swimming and swimrun wetsuits and event reviews. It’s another bumper issue! Enjoy the magazine and happy swimming. Jonathan Cowie Editor
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