Mexico's "Swim for Your Heart" event had 21,000 swimmers participating to bring an awareness of heart disease and prevention. The sport of swimming was emphasized to help promote a heart healthy lifestyle. Over 100 nurses were at 79 pool locations throughout Mexico that included 24 public pools, 15 private clubs and 40 Sport City pools. They provided free blood pressure screening and gave handouts on heart disease prevention to all participants. They are to be applauded for their effort and dedication. This event received support from the local government of Mexico City, and from Mexico's federal government and private sector. The Mexico Heart Foundation was the recipient of a donation from this event. Many open water swimmers supported this cause along with Antonio Arguelles, Mariel Hawley Davila, Nora Toledano. A large press conference was held at Sport City Fitness Center. The room was filled with reporters from several newspapers, radio, and television stations. Also, local celebrity athletes were there to promote this event. Local and state dignitaries spoke about the importance of physical exercise especially swimming to keep the heart healthy, including Dr. Hermes Liarraza from the National Institute of Cardiology. Many community businesses supported this event. I would like to thank all the swimmers, community leaders, local and state dignitaries, businesses for their support in this worthy cause. A special thank you to Antonio Arguelles who was one of the main organizers. His passion to bring awareness of heart disease prevention by promoting swimming to his country is to be commended.
I swam in memory of my brother Robbie who died at the age of 34 from a heart attack. He was unaware that he had heart disease. Also, I swam in memory of Ivar Sisniega's brother who died two weeks ago in his mid-thirties from a heart attack. Sadly, Ivar had another brother who died one year ago to the day from the same problem.
We need to continue to support heart programs throughout the world and to encourage people to swim as a means to stay heart healthy, and to see their health care provider to assess their blood pressures and cholesterol blood screening. Thank you.