Nyad's journey: In her own words
September 16th, 2011
10:21 AM ET

Nyad's journey: In her own words

Editor's note: Dr. Sanjay Gupta follows Diana Nyad while she attempted to break a world record, swimming without a shark cage from Cuba to Florida. Tune in to "Diana Nyad: Xtreme Dream" at 8 and 11 p.m. ET Saturday and at 2 a.m. ET Sunday on CNN. "Sanjay Gupta MD" airs at 7:30 a.m. ET Saturdays and Sundays on CNN.

When any of us looks back at extended-effort periods of our lives, what are we left with, other than the way in which we conducted ourselves, our display of inner character and strength, our class in facing the tough turns in the road?

Along with some 30 sterling individuals, I just spent more than two years in pursuit of a near-impossible endeavor: an epic, first-ever swim from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage. We called our expedition the "Xtreme Dream." And "Xtreme" it was.


Diana Nyad: Sharks need our help
July 28th, 2011
07:15 AM ET

Diana Nyad: Sharks need our help

Editor's Note: Recent news reports have raised the issue of sharks and how Diana Nyad and her team will react if sharks come near as she attempts to swim from Cuba to Key West, Florida. CNN , following Nyad's preparations for over a year, asked her about her shark plan and how she intended to deal with predators she might encounter in her oceanic journey. Here is Nyad's response:

Sharks have made news in recent weeks, from attacks near U.S. beaches to how they were treated by the team of a fellow ocean swimmer. There were some reports - denied by those involved - that sharks were harmed when Penny Palfrey swam in the Caymans.

I just want to be crystal clear about how my team will handle sharks on our upcoming attempt to make history in swimming the 103 miles from Cuba to Florida: No shark will be harmed at any time during our event.

Sharks worldwide are in crisis.

Tens of millions of them are killed each year just for their fins, often in a disturbing, cruel manner. At this rate, we will lose our ocean sharks within the next decade.

Agreed, our team has worked hard toward this world record. But it is of paramount importance to us that we achieve the dream in perfect harmony with all the creatures of the sea we encounter . In some regard, I am humbly asking the sharks of this particular ocean to allow me to skim across the surface of their home for about three days. I am duly respectful of them, their habits and their habitat, as is every individual on the Xtreme Dream Team.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

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