Deemed as India's very own Arnold, Anand has been on a roll. The 29-year-old bodybuilder has been crowned Mr. India thrice, Mr. Punjab twelve times and Mr. North India seven times, but that's not all. Anand has also won a national gold medal in arm wrestling.
What makes his achievements extra impressive is that Anand works out on a wheelchair, making him the country’s first wheelchair bodybuilder.
Anand Arnold's lower body got paralyzed due to deadly spinal cancer when he was just 15 years old but he remained undeterred thanks to his passion for body building and determination. By deviating his focus to building his musculature, he was able to get the better of his disability. At the age of 13, he discovered his passion for bodybuilding and won his first major title in the same year. But much to his dismay, he was diagnosed with cancer a couple of years later.
When he decided to make bodybuilding his life, his body was free from any sort of defect, but soon after winning the title of Mr. Golden, he started getting back pain.
In his interview with History TV18, Anand said that his parents found about his condition after he was rushed to the hospital due to the back pain.
Anand's mother broke the news to him that he will have to use a wheelchair to get around. "Even in a wheelchair, I will still be with all of you," Anand told his teary-eyed mother.
Anand had to go through a life-saving surgery that left him paralyzed from the neck down with only his hands having a little movability. With family, particularly his sisters, by his side, Anand Arnold overcame the difficult period in his life.
Irene Arnold, Anand's sister has been taking care of him for a long time because he was confined to his bed, helping him even with trivial tasks such as brushing teeth.
Anand's friend, Amit Gill asked him to accompany him to the gym where he saw the shoulder machine. He began exercising and much to his surprise he found his muscles were pumped up after a single set. Now, convinced that there's still a lot left in his body, Anand was able to rebuild his muscles in just one month.
Although his upper body was healed after three years of physiotherapy, his legs were permanently paralyzed. Encouraged by his coach and undeterred by his condition, Anand began training one more time despite being restricted to his wheelchair.
Anand has even acted in a movie. Inspired by his zero to hero story, Mohan Das, a film director is making a movie based on his life.
Anand Arnold plans to open a gym that will specifically cater individuals with disabilities. We wish him good luck for a bright and prosperous future. (Image Credit: Barcroft TV/YouTube)