11 Sept 2019 - For someone who spends most of her time in the water, Sarah Ferguson's routine is airtight. An ocean swim before work, a pool session at lunchtime, Pilates coaching in the evening, followed by a healthy dinner, and then bed.
This record-setting endurance swimmer is not preparing for a race or aiming for a world title. She's putting in countless strokes and sacrifices for something much larger than herself, or anything else -- the ocean. A cleaner, plastic-free ocean.
Ferguson, half fish, half eco-warrior, founded Breathe Conservation, a nonprofit dedicated to solving the plastic pollution problem, in 2012.
"Our motto with 'Breathe' is to live deeply and to tread lightly. So that means follow your passions but at the same be aware of the daily choices that you make," Ferguson said.
On land, the NGO organizes beach cleanups all over the world. In the sea, Ferguson swims unthinkably long distances in trash-laden waters to raise awareness of the issue.
She doesn't expect anyone to join her in these feats; she only hopes to inspire change.
"Just like I get to my destination one stroke at a time, every single individual decision you make ... to bring your own bag, to refuse a straw, over time, it makes a big difference," she told CNN.