Ultra-Marathon Swimmer Liana Smith: Injury, Depression & Swimming with Sharks

In today’s episode is Liana Smith who’s an elite level swimmer that even held a number of New Zealand national titles. However, at the age of just 17 Liana’s competitive swimming career was thrown into doubt when she suffered stress fractures in her back, was unable to walk, and even had to learn basic motor skills again.

During this period Liana was obviously unable to compete and do what she loved, and so lost her sense of identity and this took a serious toll on her mental health causing her to feel depressed.

It took Liana a number of years to recover both physically and mentally from this ordeal, and she is now trying to become only the 8th person in history to complete a marathon swimming challenge called the Triple Crown, which involves three different swims of mammoth distances across lakes and the sea (where there’s the added factor of sharks being present!). What’s more, she’s doing this to raise money for the mental health charity I am Hope.


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