The Average Woman Who Conqured Everest, 7 Summits, North and South Poles
Lei Wang (http://www.leisVentures.com) is an average woman but a truly inspiring story!
On the 23rd of May 2010, Lei reached the summit of Everest and became the first Chinese woman, as well as the first Asian-American woman to climb the highest mountain on every continent and to ski to both the North and South Poles. She successfully completed her “7+2″ conquest.
Known as the “Seven Plus Two” challenge, this grueling mission consists of reaching nine of the most extreme points in the world: the highest peak on each continent – called the Seven Summits – and crossing the last degrees of the icy, snowy North and South poles on cross-country skis.
Before her, there were only 9 people in the world that have finished “7+2″. Now Lei becomes the 10th.
Lei is an average woman. A Boston resident, 36-year old, 5’2”, you wouldn’t associate her with such athleticism and madness if you just meet her. Before this, her life story was very similar to a lot of people (In particular, in my own life and the high tech world). Born in China, immigrated to US, she went to good schools (Tsinghua University in Beijing and Wharton for MBA) and had good jobs in high tech and financing. Her life story would have been just like the rest of us…
Except that she had a dream and she wouldn’t let her dream die. In 2004, she decided to pursue her dream. It was not an easy process. As she wrote, when she was in her 20s, the longest distance she ran was just about 1000 meters. Now in mid 30s, she can easily keep her training at half marathon to full marathon intensity. Being short and small, she used to easily allow herself to fall behind others; now she takes pride in competing in running and climbing, and ignoring the physical advantages of her competitors. On a mountaineering trip, everyone has to carry about the same load of gear and food. A 60 lb pack may be only 1/3 of a normal man’s body weight, but it is more than 50% of her weight. So she just has to be stronger!
I have heard about Lei many times. Over the last few months when she set out for Mount Everest, my friends in Boston couldn’t stop but cheering for her and wishing her success. Every time when I think about her story, it gives me so much power to push for my own limit and pursue my own dreams. Average people can achieve amazing things. The dream lives on, as famously stated by Ted Kennedy.
Congratulations to Lei on her amazing accomplishment!
- Support Lei’s 2010 Everest climb – Donate on Paypal;
- Lei and Mount Everest on Facebook;
- More about Lei: http://www.LeisVentures.com
Lei, thank you for being such an inspiration to the rest of us.