A champion spearfisherwoman ditches her desk job for the open water

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Valentine Thomas eats what she catches, spearing fish the world over. Photo by Andrew Thomas Lee.

Valentine Thomas abandoned corporate life to dive into the most remote areas of the world. While in South Africa, she reconsidered her relationship with nature and a desk job. With the ability to freedive up to 170 feet and hold her breath for six minutes, Thomas is on a quest for sustainability and ocean conservation.

Thomas can free dive 170 feet underwater, holding her breath for up to six minutes. Photo by Andrew Thomas Lee.

She describes eating raw fish three meals a day in Cape Verde off the coast of Senegal, being dragged by a 400 pound marlin around Baja Mexico for two hours, and why the cold waters and large sharks around California are a deterrent, but the fish keep her coming back.

"The problem with the word 'sustainable' is that it's been overused, becoming empty," says Valentine Thomas. Photo by Andrew Thomas Lee.

Among her culinary discoveries is how to make gummy bears with an odorless, tasteless gelatin made from fish scales. Her book is Good Catch: A Guide to Sustainable Fish and Seafood with Recipes from the World's Ocean - A Cookbook.

Éclade de moules uses raw mussels covered with pine needles that are lit on fire. Photo by Andrew Thomas Lee.

Inspired by her dives, world-class spearfisherwoman Valentine Thomas shares recipes in Good Catch. Photo courtesy of Union Square & Co.