From Running to Everest: A Journey of Healing, Determination, and Triumph

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Aparna Prabhudesai

A quote from my favourite movie Kung Fu Panda pretty much summarizes the start of my sports journey. It says, ‘You often meet your destiny on the road you took to avoid it’! I never ever liked sports. But life has a way of teaching you lessons right here whilst we are on this planet.

When all seemed to be well and moving along smoothly, at the age of 41 life decided to in a short span of 3 months turn upside down. Bottom line, I was looking at shape up or ship out! For someone who has always gone with the philosophy that when life gives you lemons make lemonade!

Preparing for Everest

everest, running, marathon

After struggling with a degenerative bone condition for 2 years I decided to take my healing into my own hands and turned to running. Life changes never happen unless one makes lifestyle changes. I too, set myself an audacious goal for 4 years later of scaling Mt. Everest, the highest point on earth, in 2017, and running became a means to an end.

Focusing on building muscle strength to reduce the stress on bones, I turned to running and cycling and to be able to reach my goal of the highest mountain on earth I began learning the ropes, quite literally. 

I was the new Forrest Gump! The running journey started in June 2013 when I ran/walked my first 3km. And as they say, the rest is history. I had become an adrenaline junky. Running was my solution to everything. I was like a kid in a candy store with all the medals that I, like almost all runners, wanted to collect after every run.

The distances increased from 3km to 5km, 10km, 21km, 42km, 50km, 75km… half and full marathons and ultras there was no stopping me. I also, at the same time began cycling to cross-train and the mileage increased there as well.

Journey to the TOP

Everest climb

The mountain journey began with a first trek to Triund and Laka Glacier near Dharamsala and went on to multiple treks, mountaineering courses both Basic and advanced (I was the oldest in both my batches and prey to the sympathy of all my batchmates ?), and climbing mountains in the Himalayas in India and Nepal. Everything that I did was focused on Everest in mind.

The preparation was not only physical but emotional, mental, and financial as well. They say when one truly desires something the entire universe conspires to make that happen and sure enough that was true in my case too. 1st of April, All Fools Day, mind you, I headed for a two-month expedition to Chomolungma – the Goddess – Everest from the North Side, Tibet.

That journey needed all that I had prepared for and some more. The effort bore fruit when on the 22nd of May 2022 the Goddess gave her blessings and I was on top of the highest point on earth with the mountain allowing me to come up! 

When you want to make something happen, set out the intent and chase it with Dedication, Devotion, and Discipline (D3 is not just for the bones but other aspects of life too)! Wishing everyone success in being able to scale their own Everest. 

Everest Mountain Scenery

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