Diana Nyad speaks out: 'I swam all the way'

LOS ANGELES

Nyad joined a dozen other marathon swimmers in a conference call Tuesday night, standing her ground against criticisms.

Speculation that the 64-year-old had gotten into or held onto a boat during the 103-mile journey prompted the meeting. Fellow long-distance swimmers crunched the numbers based on GPS, saying her speeds briefly rocketed up, at one point faster than an Olympic speed swimmer.

But Nyad insists she never left the water or allowed her team to help her beyond handing her food.

"We are ethical, honorable people, we never ever touched a boat, got out on a boat, had any floatation of somebody holding me up. I was in the open ocean, and I swam all the way from the rocks of Cuba to the sands of Florida," Nyad said.

Nyad also claimed the right to set ground rules for future swims from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage.

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