- Event Date: June 14, 2023
- Event Location: San Francisco Bay
(Angel Island to San Quentin)
- Amount Raised: $2,420
How you can help?
Support LymeLight Foundation with Pia!
On Wednesday, June 14th I successfully completed my first marathon-length swim — 8 miles from Angel Island to San Quentin in San Francisco Bay (which I’m calling the Heaven to Hell Swim) in 5 hours with my friend Crissa Williams and piloted by Pacific Swim Co. And crewed by Elaine Van Vleck (Crissa’s sister).
Crissa and I trained starting at the end of March and I can’t thank her enough for encouraging me, a mere mortal open water swimmer, to reach beyond what I thought was possible. She and Elaine have previously swum the width of Lake Tahoe. Prior to this training, my longest swim was 3 miles and a max time of 2 hours in the water. I’ve learned so much about what my body can do, what it can do in the cold (water was 52 when we started and now a much more comfortable 58-60), and the magic of nutrition (feeding every 30 minutes) while swimming otherwise nonstop for up to 4 hours.
Some of you know how Lyme+tick-borne diseases have affected me and my family in the past. We were very fortunate to have the resources to find and access doctors, practitioners, and treatments that allowed us all to recover. Very few families do. Chronic Lyme disease is still not recognized or covered by insurance. That’s why I dedicated my swim to the fight against Lyme+ and raising money for LymeLight Foundation. LLF was founded by families whose children had chronic Lyme disease and provides grants to children and young adults for treatment and medication.
Love to all and thanks for the support, especially my husband Chris Mittelstaedt for indulging my crazy sport and the wealth of humor, warmth, and knowledge at the Dolphin Swimming & Boating Club.