In 1980, twin brothers Steen and Peder Madrup came into this world three months early and only weighing about 2.5 pounds. A lack of oxygen due to complications with Peder would cause him to suffer from severe cerebral palsy and be wheelchair-bound for life as a result.
Steen came away without a disability and has utilized this gift maximally in various types of athletics throughout his life. Meanwhile, Peder also achieved great things and became an important spokesperson for the disabled in numerous organizations and clubs. His indominatable spirit would not allow his handicap to keep him in check. His disability does not dictate his life and he is determined not to let it limit his opportunities in life.
He still thought Steen was crazy though, when he suggested they run an Ironman race together. The ultimate triathlon consists of a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride and then a 26.2 mile run (a marathon). Even the most athletically gifted endurance freaks tend to fail trying to complete an Ironman race.
Steen was convinced it could work and was not going to be convinced otherwise. They started small: In 2013, they ran a half marathon with Steen pushing Peder and completed it in 2 hours and 16 minutes. Peder was now somewhat convinced more could be possible, so they competed in increasingly more difficult endurance events. During a half Ironman last year, they actually had to give up during the race because their bike broke!
Did they quit? Nope! It all led up to the 2014 Copenhagen Ironman held on August 24th, 2014 in Copenhagen, Denmark. For the 2.4 mile swimming portion of the race, Peder sat in an inflatable kayak and Steen pulled it using a harness. Steen then carried his twin brother to the bike and they went for a 112 mile bike ride! After this… the most grueling portion of the race: A marathon! Running in the dark and pushing his brother Peder, Steen wasn’t about to let them go over 23 hours (which would have disqualified them from the Ironman challenge).
15 hours, 47 minutes and 38 seconds after starting the Ironman race, they finished it like a boss. What a feeling it must’ve been for both of them to achieve the seemingly impossible task together as brothers. Wonderful!
No matter the problems and obstacles in your life, do not give up. Ever.