I met my swim coach Tim in May 2008 when I decided to learn to swim. I was making reasonable progress then in August my friend Guy died unexpectedly at age 38. I was shell shocked but somehow turned up for my swim lesson the next day. Tim then told me his story.He severely damaged his back in a rugby accident in 1999 and was told that he`d probably never walk again pain-free. It was too dangerous to operate and the only thing he could do was swim. Being Tim he needed a challenge so set his sights on the English Channel. 5 years later, having learnt to walk again, he set off to swim to France. At the end of Tim`s Channel swim, Tim`s coach, Mark, got in the water to swim the last 100m with him. Once they`d achieved the goal and were back on the support boat, Mark had a sudden heart attack and died in Tim`s arms. Tim had known Mark since school days and was devastated. However, he picked himself up and has since devoted his life to swim coaching with clients that range from beginners through to Channel swimmers. Tim is one of the most inspiring people I`ve ever met. When he told me that story he also told me that I could do whatever I wanted to do if I wanted it enough. Those words have stuck with me and having learnt to swim in 2008 I have now become an Open Water swimmer and last year completed a 4.6 mile sea swim around Brownsea Island in Dorset. Before learning to swim I did no exercise, I now train either in the pool or gym 6 times a week. Swimming has changed my life and I owe that to Tim.