Ironman 70.3 finisher

My first steps, as an adult!

Do you remember your first steps? I do – It’s the most excited I’ve been as an adult! 

An accident severely injured my spine and I suddenly aged to the 90s in my 30’s. From being an avid outdoors person – biking, running & trekking, life came to a standstill forcing me to lay in a neutral position, bedridden for 6 months. For every little movement I was dependent on family (mostly my wife). It was the most humbling experience. 

As many as 8 doctors said surgery was my only option. Even on recovery, they thought I’d be lucky to walk upright let alone run again. 

What do you do with such a grim conclusion? 

Disheartened. Bored of TV. I loved to play Chess – even that couldn’t pull me out of my low spirits. I turned to Youtube and the Internet to research spinal injuries & others in similar situations. 

Things started to turn around when Dr. Pallavi Gijare and Dr. Vihita Kulkarni advised against surgery. The human body is unbelievably resilient, they said, convinced I could recover without surgery. I put my faith in their confidence, in physiotherapy sessions, in Coach Ajit’s dedicated training in building strength, muscle, and core power. 



Grueling! But day after day I was getting better. Whatever I learnt from the game of Chess guided me – balancing mental & emotional energy, calm under pressure and strategic calculations! With a single focus – to walk again, I worked for my first steps ->100 meters-> jog-> 5k/10k/half marathons ->swimming with Coach Nimish ->crossing this Ironman finish line in Goa with Ajay! I don’t take anything for granted anymore. 

Contributed by: Preshit Kulkarni | Location: Mumbai

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