Julie Madison Heads South and Turns To The Open Water, Making The Most Of It
Julie Madison, a former competitive swimmer and swim coach from Connecticut, moved to Florida and really became active in the open water swimming community.
But open water swimming was an unlikely outcome of her move. “I didn’t like dark water. I didn’t like rough water. I didn’t like cold water. I didn’t want to do open water swimming,” she recalled when someone mentioned to her that she should get into the sport.
But fate intervened and Madison now does a slew of exploratory and pioneering open water swims in addition to organizing an open water series, The Fresh Start Swim Series to benefit Forgotten Coast K-9 and the underprivileged community learning to swim. She explained, “Most of my swims have just been training swims, for the love of swimming.”
Her most recent circumnavigation swim around Anna Maria Island in Florida pioneered the 16.8-mile course. Madison said, “I have another one coming up this week that will be kinda cool if I succeed: it is the 22-mile Longboat Key swim, but I have also got a bunch of other attempts in the works for this spring, summer, and next year.”
The Fresh Start Swim Series is a 3-race series in Florida with the following races:
- Honeymoon Island: 2-mile, 4-mile, 8-mile on 2 April 2022
- Madeira Beach: 5 km, 10 km, 1-mile run + 1/2-mile swim + 1-mile run on 4 June 2022
- St. Pete Beach: 500m, 2.5 km, 5 km, 10 km on 19 November 2022
For more information, visit www.freshstartswimseries.com. Madison says, “The Fresh Start Swim Series is a set of three events a year consisting of multitude of races each designed to improve the race experience, as well as to improve the lives of others and make the world a better place. Fresh Start Swim Series looks to bring a camaraderie back to the competitive swimming world by creating a safe, fun, and lively atmosphere.”
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