"Swimming To Antartica"

I just read this book…a pretty fascinating account of a young woman who is able to swim in freezing cold water! She talks about her life as a long-distance swimmer…I have a few questions:
If you are a professional swimmer, how do you keep from getting bored? I swim laps in a pool, and the best part of it is when it is over…it is so boring!
-Those long distance events: isn’t swimming around cities pretty gross? The author talked about the Ciro swim in the river Nile…geck-the Nile is like an open sewer! She collided with the rotting carcasse of a dead dog…blecch!
Nevertheless, you have to admire the determination of someone who could swim the Bering Strait!