In 2008, Bonner Paddock summited Mount Kilimanjaro, the world’s tallest freestanding mountain. Four years later, he earned the elite triathlete title, Kona Ironman. Thousands have done each individually. Bonner is the first person with cerebral palsy to do both. When Bonner was born, his umbilical cord had coiled twice around his neck, depriving him of oxygen, causing parts of his brain to die. That cord didn’t take his life, but it changed it forever. Diagnosed in his youth, Bonner swore he wouldn’t let this neurological disorder limit him, and for twenty-nine years he guarded the truth about his health. But the sudden death of a friend’s young son who also suffered from CP forced Bonner to re-evaluate his life. No longer would he be content striving for normal. Instead, he would live life to its fullest, pursuing one breathtaking experience at a time—while raising money for special needs children along the way—and never turn down a challenge for fear of his physical limitations. His monumental climb up Mt. Kilimanjaro was documented in the film Beyond Limits and helped raise money for the construction of a new childcare center in Orange County, providing early treatment for children with all types of physical disabilities. Bonner took his vision global and has been building more centers around the world to help children live better lives. When he completed the Kona Ironman… which is 140 miles of racing…. in 16 1/2 hours, he raised over $560,000 for special needs children. His is a remarkable journey that has taken him across the globe and introduced him to a fascinating cast of characters who have supported his inspiring quest. An athlete, adventurer, and philanthropist, Bonner is today no longer defined by his limits, but by the moments that pushed him past them. One More Step shows us that we can all conquer our own challenges and embrace every moment life has to offer.
What you’ll learn about in this episode:
- How the work Bonner first did in Tanzania showed him what wisdom and intelligence mean and what having a purpose in life is.
- How the idea for the OM Foundation popped in his head when he was in Tanzania to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro.
- What it was like when he and Dr. Aminian first traveled to Tanzania to see patients and met Juliana.
- How mentally challenging it was knowing that he had to have an almost perfect race to complete the Kona Ironman in the required 17 hours.
- How viewing the “Magic Hour” the year before helped Bonner prepare for the Kona Ironman.
- How Bonner controlled the conversation in his head while training and on race day.
- What advice Bonner gives people with self-limiting beliefs due to circumstances beyond their control.