I was born and raised in Morocco, the eldest of 5 children to parents of modest means. It came as a great shock to my parents when I was born with a birth defect (PFFD) that essentially left me without a femur in my left leg. They feared I would never walk.
I grew up wanting just to be like the other kids, running around and playing soccer with them. It was only when I was fit with my first real prosthesis at age 20 that the world of sports truly opened up to me. Although a late bloomer, I wasted no time catching up! I rode a bike for the first time at age 25 and the following year I crossed the Atlas Mountains on it. At age 27, I ran for the first time and then completed my first marathon just a few months later.
Sport has been the catalyst towards a personal realization that limitations reside only in my mind. No one expected much of me with a physical disability and I will admit that I didn’t push myself either. Sport has provided me a new sense of freedom and a changed outlook on life. We can do more than we ever imagined if we just dare ourselves to push a little harder, go a little further.
Paratriathlon was introduced to the Olympics in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro. I’m proud to say I brought home the inaugural bronze medal in the PT2 category. Building on this success, my next goal is to “Go for Gold” in Tokyo 2020, representing my adopted country, USA. Join me as I make my way to the top.