Nacho Dean is a naturalist, a professional explorer and a populariser. He is the first person in history to have both walked around the world and swum the 5 continents (there have been more people on the moon).
Ocean Ambassador Q&A
When and how did sustainability first become important to you?
I have always been in love with nature and sports in the open air. Since I was a kid I liked surfing, cycling, climbing, trekking and spending time in contact with the ocean, the forests, the mountains, but it was in an unconscious way, just because of a pure feeling of happiness and wild freedom.
As I grew up, I realised how important is for our health and development to take care of all those natural places we love to spend time in. So, I studied a degree in natural and landscape resource management and I have been working for a few years in the Study and Protection of Marine Species. When I was 33, I felt I had to do something bigger to protect our planet, so I decided to embark on the expedition that took me from 2013 to 2016 - the Walk Around the World to document climate change.
In 2019 I finished my last expedition, The Nemo Expedition: I connected the 5 continents by swimming, to raise awareness for the oceans.
What’s your favourite sustainable fish dish?
I love salmon: smoked salmon and grilled salmon.
How many calories do you need to consume each day? Does it go up when you preparing for an event?
4000-5000 calories a day. Of course, when I am preparing for an expedition I increase the amount of calories, and I try to put some weight on in order to be prepared for the hard times ahead.
What’s your top tip for staying fit during coronavirus lockdown?
First of all, I try to eat healthy. I always eat healthily, but now it's more important: vegetables, fresh fruit, fish.
I do an exercises table every day, I practice yoga and some meditation in the early morning. And, of course I keep a routine waking up early and sleeping 6-7 hours. It is very useful to keep your mind busy studying, working and reading.
What fish-based meals do you enjoy eating when you are preparing to compete at an event?
I love fish cooked in the oven with potatoes, like bass, bream, mackerel…full of flavour and protein.
Do you have a favourite song you listen to before you compete?
My expeditions are very long journeys, they take me years and I go through all kind of emotions. Sometimes I love to listen to rock music, sometimes jazz, bossa nova or classical music, lastly I like to listen to country music.Two examples: "Victory" (Two Steps from Hell) and "Song To The Siren" (This Mortal Coil).
What emotions do you feel when you perform well in your sport?
Pure satisfaction and a feeling of fluidity as a consequence of hard work, I am passionate about the search of excellence. And very happy because nature conservation is the true purpose to which I dedicate my expeditions.
Do you get access to good quality and sustainable fish when you perform at events?
Not as much as I would love to. When I am on an expedition, I tend to be quite far from the comfort zone and all the facilities of an easy life so, I actually eat the food I find in the country or the wild environment I am passing through.
Want to know more about Nacho Dean? Visit his website.