Between September 4 and 6, depending on the weather window, Rémi Camus will embark on a crossing of the Mediterranean by swimming, in total autonomy and without assistance. 180 km as the crow flies from Calvi to Monaco, but he estimates that he will have to cover 220 km taking into account the winds, currents and fatigue. To this is added an additional effort since Camus will tow a platform of 160 kg, 3 meters long by 1.50 meters wide, which will allow him to eat and spend his nights there.
Equipped with flippers, mask, snorkel and a wetsuit to avoid sunburn and jellyfish stings, his typical day will be as follows: “I wake up at 5 a.m. to get ready to eat, to transform sea water into fresh water. I make a few videos to illustrate everything, then I do my tests for the laboratory and I get dressed. From 8 a.m. to noon I’m at sea. I go up on the platform until 2 p.m. where I eat, transform my water and tell my daily life in front of the camera. I resume swimming until 6 p.m. And again, I eat and prepare for the next day. At 9 p.m. I go to bed to be fit. »
“I do a lot of swimming against the current”
A physical condition that he has been working on since September 2020. “I have been mixing bodybuilding and crossfit for two years. » At the rate of six workouts per week, or even more, Rémi Camus prefers to swim in the river. “I find it more ‘challenging’. To train myself to tractor load I do a lot of swimming against the current. »
It is above all a mental work to have to accept the natural constraints. He knows that some days, due to the current, he will swim without moving forward, and sometimes even back up. This is why Rémi estimates that the crossing will take between 8 and 15 days. Over days involving he will lose tremendous weight. “I had a lot of trouble storing fat and gaining 5 kg. Two years ago I weigh 80 kg and I think I will lose up to 8 kg. It’s my diet! »he laughs.
And it must be said that he puts his body to the test. The sportsman also inflicts cold water immersions on him. “Sometimes I isolate myself in the freezer to strengthen my resistance to the cold. »
Beyond the physical and mental challenge that this crossing represents, the adventurer-explorer has several objectives: scientific research but also environmental awareness. He will work on stress in a hostile environment in collaboration with the University Hospital of Grenoble. “Our goal is to understand how humans react in hostile environments such as at sea, he explains to us. Instead of giving myself injections – impractical at sea – I will spit in pipettes morning and evening. I’ll keep them and we’ll analyze them when I get back. » The link with the environment? “With climate change, we will experience increasingly hot summers and increasingly harsh winters. And it will be stressful because these are new situations, we will have to adapt quickly. »
“My goal is to arrive alive”
For this survival trainer who has a very ecological and environmental fiber, nature is his playground. “I don’t want it to be the story of a guy swimming across the Mediterranean. This crossing is a human and awareness-raising adventure. I wanted to take on board as many people as possible with me. »
In partnership with 12 schools, more than 10,000 students take part in the project. Upon his return, Rémi Camus also goes to the retirement homes of the ACPPA group to discuss environmental issues with our ancestors. With a bit of irony he blurts out: “My goal is to arrive alive on the beach of Larvotto to testify to what I would have seen. »
A few weeks before departure, final preparations and three very important medical appointments, physiotherapist, osteopath and acupuncturist. Because he knows it, his body will be his best ally to succeed in this crossing.