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Champion Flu Remedies

ANT chant


How do you recover from the flu? The usual response is a combination of rest, medication, and fluids. Flu remedies do not often include competing in a swim meet.

Well, swimming through the flu is exactly what I witnessed and captured with my cameras last weekend.

With emotions high and strength levels low due to influenza that spread throughout the team, they managed to do it again. The Antigua and Barbuda National Swim Team won their second Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) swimming championship in St. Lucia. In a contested finish between Grenada and Antigua and Barbuda, officials initially announced co-champions in the 31st annual meet.

Antigua and Barbuda and Grenada OECS Champions

Final results later indicated Antigua and Barbuda as the 2023 champion. While some of the Antigua and Barbuda National team managed to leave St. Lucia unscathed by influenza, some swimmers and their parents left with more than the OECS trophy.

Coaches, parents, swimmers, and their siblings caught the flu.

It started last Friday. One of Antigua and Barbuda’s strongest swimmers began to feel ill. Moments before being rushed to the hospital, he played video games with my boys in our hotel room. He laughed, ate some candy, and behaved similarly to any 12-year-old athlete before a competition.

After about thirty minutes, my sons and their friends decided to take the gaming session to another swimmer’s room. The swimmer, with a questionable health status, fell asleep on the deck. When a coach moved him inside to a bed, he started to shiver. The weather was more than 80°F/27°C in St. Lucia last Friday morning.

The coach, several swimmers, parents, and the team doctor recognized something was wrong.

Antigua and Barbuda’s National Swim Team Manager picked the child up and carried him through the hotel lobby like a newborn baby. With a coach and the doctor, they drove the swimmer to a local clinic. When insufficient resources did not lower his fever, they transported him to the hospital.

After multiple tests, doctors confirmed he had a combination of dengue and influenza. He stayed in the hospital for the weekend and missed the meet.

His medical condition became a rallying cry for the team. "We are all doing this for Jamie and Team Antigua and Barbuda to win the championship once again," said National Team Captain Zardad "Didi" Jan. The team needed every source of motivation as many began to feel sick and struggle to swim.

Antigua and Barbuda's national Swim team huddle

The team chanted, “For Jamie,” in pre-race huddles and as they walked to the diving blocks. While the team did not win every race, their teammate’s illness propelled them to leave victorious.

Grenada's National Swim Team put up a good fight. "I won the IM, 25 Butterfly, and the 4 Lap Freestyle," said one young swimmer from the team. Grenada matched Antigua and Barbuda's points at the culmination of the meet on Sunday.

After later review, officials discovered the Antigua and Barbuda National Team did not receive credit when one of their swimmers earned four points during a race. These additional points confirmed their win.

So, how should you recover from influenza?

You must rest, build your internal strength, drink fluids, and compete in a swim meet. I'm joking about the swimming component of the remedy. However, many of the people who attended the OECS swimming championship are beginning to feel better.

Influenza is spreading during this season. Perhaps this is the year to vaccinate or build your immune system through moderate exercise, rest, and nutrition. You decide what your body needs.

Watch the video recap with pictures from the memorable 2023 31st OECS Swimming Championship by clicking on the red triangle below. Follow the Antigua and Barbuda National Swim Team on Instagram and Facebook. Subscribe to this blog for future posts delivered to your inbox and several free E-gifts.


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As soon as covid left due to Paxlovid the miracle drug, then came rhinovirus; then vax for RSV, all for my bestie. No dengue here on another island, ....yet. Dengue is no laughing matter, and over 100 cases on that island. Be very, very careful. It is troublesome for the young, debilitating for the mids, and well maybe the ends for the end. They survived, and thrived. Humongous congratulations to you and yours, Doc. Way to go. Very proud of this team.

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Thank you, doc! It's good to know you are still at it on your medical degree journey. Yes, dengue is serious. One of the parents caught it during the trip. Thankfully, she is doing better.

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