This 29-Year-Old Isn't Your Typical Bodybuilding Champion. He's Paralysed Waist Down

Not just that, he also battled cancer and beat it.

Cover image via Barcroft

Talk about overcoming your weaknesses!

Hailing from the city of Ludhiana in the Punjab state of India, he always dreamt of becoming a bodybuilding champion. In fact, he won his first trophy in a bodybuilding championship when he was just 13.

However, tragedy struck the young fitness enthusiast at the mere age of 15 when he was diagnosed with cancer in his lower spinal cord, and quickly underwent an operation which left him paralysed and bed-ridden for three long years.

Famously known as Anand Arnold, named after Arnold Schwarzenegger, the young Indian, however, didn't let his disability define him or hold him back from realising his childhood dream. In his own words, he made is weakness his strength.

Today, Anand Arnold is India's first wheelchair bodybuilder

A compilation of pictures show Anand through his ages of transformation.

Image via Anand Arnold/folomojo

Talking about his paralysis, Anand says, "after the operation, my chest was paralysed. I could just move my hands and nothing else." He added that "those three years were like hell for me".

Image via Barcroft

I was bed-ridden for three years. My family and loved ones were very worried, but I did not give up. I remained positive and knew that all was not over yet. One day, the students who used to train under me, brought me to the gym where I did a few shoulder exercises. That short while was enough for me to get inspired and return to training.

At that time, my coach Mr. Ravi Parashar helped me restart an intensive fitness regime. He allowed me to work out at his health club for free and also supported me mentally. Thanks to him and all those who stood by me, it was no looking back from there on.
Image via Barcroft

Anand's intensive training helped regain his strength and he began to compete as India's first wheelchair bodybuilder.

In fact, he went on to win 3 Mr India titles, 12 Mr Punjab titles and 27 other major titles since he began competing again.

He’s also the face of Muscle Mania and a brand ambassador for a nutrition supplement company, as well as a model for a range of popular action toys.

Understandably his father, Prince Arnold, is incredibly proud: ‘Any father who has such a son will definitely be proud of him. So I am.’

And although he’s already achieved so much, against the odds, Anand is still focused and determined to achieve more.

He said: ‘My biggest dream is to make a movie on my life. I believe it will inspire people to reach new heights. It will give people like me a new ray of hope.’

Anand with one of his many trophies.

Image via Barcroft

You can watch this video to learn more about Anand:

Speaking of being a survivor, read how this 25-year-old Malaysian beat his cancer and went on to conquer Mt Kinabalu:

Some of our previous Feel Good Friday stories you should read:

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