Colin O’Brady Crosses Antarctica Solo!

By   Shlomo Maital


Colin O’Brady Near the Finish

   33-year-old Colin O’Brady has just completed a 921-mile journey across Antarctica, solo, alone, unaided by wind, pulling a heavy sled with his tent and food. The New York Times calls it “one of the great feats in polar history”.   No-one had done it before unaided.

   A friend of O’Brady, Englishman Louis Rudd, 49, started out at the same time as O’Brady and is also close to the finish. In a gentlemanly act, O’Brady said he will wait for Rudd, then they will fly out together.

     O’Brady survived 932 miles of bad weather, freezing temperatures, mishaps, jagged ice projections and loneliness, for 53 full days, without a day off.

     In his final push, O’Brady completed the final 77.54 miles in one shot, sleepless, for 32 hours – an ultra-marathon tacked on to a regular day’s walk.   O’Brady said, “I just felt locked in for the last 32 hours, like a deep flow state. I didn’t listen to any music – just locked in, like I’m going until I’m done. It was profound, it was beautiful…!”

     What can we take away from this amazing feat?  Rather than think about his suffering, O’Brady said “I was reviewing the entirety of the expedition in my mind, and I was aware I’m going to tell this story for the rest of my life, but I told myself, you’re living this right now – live it!”

       We can learn from those two words – live it!   I see so many people enjoying wonderful experiences, vistas, celebrations ..and focused on taking selfies. Surely photographing these experiences at least somewhat mars the ‘live it’ enjoy it experience.   Let’s live it. Be in the moment, as the mindfulness people tell us. Never mind the selfies. Live it, so that you will be able to relive it, many many times, with sharp memories. Because, you will relive it, and if you really live it while you’re living it, those memories will serve you far better than any selfie.  

     Thanks, Colin! We get it.