‘From Blind Man to IRONMAN’ is the remarkable true story of how Leicester, UK-based Haseeb Ahmad overcame his blindness to set the world record for the fastest blind iron distance triathlon. “My story is about triumph over adversity,” explained Haseeb. “From becoming blind in my teens I would never have dreamt that almost 35 years later I would break the World Blind Ironman Record.”
Haseeb Ahmad started to lose his sight at 10 years old. He knew his eyesight wasn’t normal, but the medical profession failed to diagnose the degenerative eye disease that left him completely blind by the age of 20. As his eyesight continued to rapidly deteriorate he struggled to come to grips with what was happening to him – and there were no answers for several years.
He got no help at school and home life proved tough too. Things seemed to spiral out of control and the future looked bleak. He did his best to feel his way through the next seven years of his life until finally his eye condition was diagnosed in 1987 when he was 17 years old.
After being registered totally blind following diagnosis, Haseeb faced more than his fair share of personal challenges – would he get to university? Would he work, have a family and career? If there was anything to learn about Haseeb it is that he has an abundance of grit, determination and a bountiful supply of humour. His positivity and zest for life has ensured that whatever the challenge, whatever the barrier, he never gives up.
Many years later, at the age of 38, Haseeb found himself applying to join the GB Paratriathlon squad, medalling at national and international competitions and then breaking the World Blind Ironman record on 2 October 2016 at IRONMAN Barcelona with his guide, Duncan Shea-Simmonds.
“I want to give hope and inspire anyone who may be struggling with life’s challenges to never give up,” Haseeb Ahmad added. “Every time I have fallen in life, sometimes literally, I have got back up and kept running – and that is my message to everyone out there… keep on running!”
‘From Blind Man to IRONMAN’ was published on 28 August 2017 (ISBN: 9781788033305) and is priced at £12.99.