All the Way to London. My Arms Will Be Tired.

My friend emailed me a great workout this morning. I’m all for using things like MotionBased.com and other route-planning tools. She said, “Go to Google Maps. Type: Get directions. For Start, type New York. For End, type London. Then, look at Step 23. Really? Okay, I’m game. Here it is… I’ll save you those steps, just scroll down to Step 23 now.

Travel 3,938 mi (about 29 days 10 hours)
1. Head southwest on Broadway toward Warren
St 0.2 mi1 min
2. Turn left at Park Row 0.1 mi 1 min
3. Slight right at Frankfort St 0.3 mi 1 min
4. Turn left at Pearl St 56 ft
5. Turn right onto the F.D.R. Dr N ramp 0.4 mi 1 min
6. Merge onto FDR Dr N 7.7 mi 12 mins
7. Take exit 17 on the left for Triboro
Bridge/Grand Central Pkwy toward I-
278/Bruckner Expy 0.4 mi 2 mins
8. Merge onto Triborough Bridge
Partial toll road 0.4 mi1 min
9. Merge onto I-278 E via the ramp to I-87
N/Bronx/Upstate N Y/New England 0.6 mi1 min
10. Take exit 47 to merge onto Bruckner Expy/I-
278 E toward New Haven 1.9 mi2 mins
11. Take the I-278 E exit toward New Haven 0.3 mi
12. Merge onto Bruckner Expy 5.0 mi 6 mins
13. Continue on I-95 N Partial toll road
Entering Connecticut 62.1 mi 1 hour 12 mins
14. Take exit 48 on the left to merge onto I-91 N
toward Hartford 36.8 mi37 mins
15. Take exit 29 for US-5 N/CT-15 toward I-84/E
Hartford/Boston 0.4 mi
16. Merge onto CT-15 N 1.7 mi 2 mins
17. Merge onto I-84 E
Partial toll road 40.7 mi38 mins
18. Take the exit onto I-90 E/Mass
Pike/Massachusetts Turnpike toward N.H.-
Maine/Boston Partial toll road 56.0 mi 56 mins
19. Take exit 24 A-B-C on the left toward I-93
N/Concord NH/S Station/I-93 S/Quincy 0.4 mi1 min
20. Merge onto Atlantic Ave 0.8 mi 3 mins
21. Turn right at Central St 0.1 mi
22. Turn right at Long Wharf 0.1 mi
23. Swim across the Atlantic Ocean 3,462 mi
29 days 0 hours

Hold it, hold it, wait right there. I’ll spare you the other 35 steps to get to downtown London. Back up to Step #23. Pretty funny, huh? Think about It. Me swimming 3,462 miles across “The Pond.”

1.) That’s 6,093,126 yards.

2.) For laughs, let’s say I had a really good breakfast before I headed out in the Atlantic and managed a 2:10/100 yard pace (or 130 seconds). That could be my Olympic distance race pace this weekend, but let’s pretend…

3.) Multiply line 1 by line 2. Now, we’re up 7,921,063.8 seconds of trying to ward off hypothermia.

4.) There are 3,600 seconds in an hour.

5.) In the spirit of the final day of our IRS tax deadline, divide line 3 by line 4.

6.) I got 2,200.29 hours of swimming.

7.) Let’s pretend I’ve been so inspired by my friend, long-distance swimmer and author Lynne Cox and Guinness record holder Martin Strel who just swam the Amazon – that I churn out an amazing 7 hours of swimming a day. Why not?!

8.) So just to make sure your head really hurts on this tax deadline day (like mine does right now), divide line 6 by line 7.

My answer, if I did it all right — and remember I’m a writer, not a numbers gal — is 314.3 days. And of course my voyage would require thousands of tax dollars in Lifeguard and U.S. Coast Guard support, if past races could be any indicator of future performance. Shoot, let’s not leave out the British Navy.

Google Maps thinks 29 days of swimming is sufficient though. For who? Mark Phelps? Ian Thorpe? Certainly not little ol’ me -– 623.