Brian Anderson, 31, was surfing off the coast of Northern Oregon Saturday when a great white shark attacked him.
As he was paddling, Anderson said he felt something grab his leg. Without thinking, he punched the big shark in the nose.
"That's all I could think to do, and after I did that, it let go," Anderson said. "And I wanted to get to shore as soon as I could. The thought crossed my mind that I might not make it back in and it was just pretty hectic."
Anderson credits his experience as a surfer and shark television shows with helping him keep his presence of mind.
"I acted on instinct," he said.
Anderson then paddled to shore, where bystanders said they saw a puddle of blood dripping from his leg.
Before heading to the hospital with a fellow surfer, Anderson tied his surfboard leash tightly around his shin to prevent blood loss.
Still hospitalized, he is expected to make a full recovery and will probably surf again.
"I'll go back out, eventually," he said. "It probably will be awhile. I'm grateful I made it back in and there was definitely somebody watching out after me that day."