Sunday, October 12, 2008

Sean Swarner

There are seven continents on the planet. Each and everyone has a mountain range that hold the honor of being the highest point of that that continent!

They are as follows:
Asia - Mt. Everest - 29, 035 feet
Africa - Kilimanjaro - 19,340 feet
Europe - Mt. Elbures - 18,422 feet
South America - Aconcagua - 22,842 feet
Australia - Mt. Kosciusko - 7,310 feet
Antarctica -Mt. Vinson - 16,067 feet
North America - Mt. McKinley - 20, 320 feet

Sean Swarner has been to the top of all of them. The amazing part is that he is a 2 time cancer survivor and is the first and only survivor to make it to the top of Mt. Everest. By the way he only has one lung!

While in the 8th grade he was diagnosed with 4th grade Hodgkins Lymphoma and was told that he only had six months to live. Within a year his cancer was in remission and follow up test were all negative.

Then in May of 1990, 20 months into remission, doctors found a tumor next to his right lung. The tumor was an aggressive form of cancer called Askins Sarcoma that was unrelated to his early fight. He was only given two weeks to live.

Again he survived! The removal of the tumor and the treatment that followed left him with only one functioning lung and one goal in life.

In an interview with a Denver newspaper, Swarner stated “My goal is to hopefully inspire others to motivate themselves,". To do this he set out on a mission to stand on top of the Seven highest peaks on the planet!

On June 19th 2007 he completed this goal on the Top of Mt. McKinley! At that time he dug a hole and buried a banner bearing the names of 300 people who had been effected by cancer. He stated that they carried him to the top. Not the other way around!

He has said that “The human body can live for 30 days without food, the human condition can sustain itself for 3 days without water but no human alive can survive more than 30 seconds with out hope”.

His story is more complex and detailed then I can possible write in a bog. There are a lot of videos on youtube about his story so check them out. It is worth the time.

I saw a special report last year on ESPN’s “Out Side the Lines” about Sean (also on you tube).

The reason I am bring this up is that on Saturday 10/11/08 he completed the Hawaii Ironman!

I am perfectly healthy. Never had cancer or any other major illness and there is no reason for me to ever miss a workout, when there are people like Sean can accomplish so much with nothing but their will to do so!

Do you have an excuse?

Train hard!

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