235: Roderick Sewell Podcast

February 18, 2022

In today’s episode of the ‘Finding your Summit’ podcast, host Mark Pattison, former NFL Player, Entrepreneur, Philanthropist, and Mountaineer who has climbed the Seven Summits, talks with guest Roderick Sewell, Motivational Speaker, Ironman Championship Finisher, USA Athlete, and CAF Ambassador. Roderick talks about his life’s challenges and the amazing stuff he has done.

Episode Highlights

  • 03:36 – Roderick talks about what he was born with, and the challenges that he had growing up as a small kid.
  • 05:30 – Roderick was able to run around outside with his cousins, and from there, that was his freedom. He started climbing trees and doing everything.
  • 07:30 – It was kind of a dark time where they didn’t know what was going to be next.
  • 09:50 – Mark asks what it was like being homeless on the streets
  • 11:45 – “Did you in any way have any kind of resentment towards your mother?” asks Mark.
  • 14:10 – Roderick answers how he got introduced to the ‘Challenged Athletes Foundation’.
  • 17:00 – Regardless if you have disabilities or not, everybody is so different for various reasons. Once Roderick realized what works for him, that’s where everything augmented.
  • 19:00 – The freedom that Roderick got from swimming after being afraid of it for so long, was next level. So these are the things that he took with him to Alabama.
  • 21:40 – Roderick has been training for Paralympic swimming since he was 16.
  • 24:10 – The longest marathon Roderick ran was six miles, and in that time, he was surprised himself.
  • 26:10 – In the same way that Roderick found his freedom with swimming and running, he got comfortable on his new bike. It was something that became newfound freedom.
  • 28:00 – Swimming and cycling together are tough, because swimming is a sport that Roderick is naturally just lean, the more you do it, the more your body kind of molds to that form.
  • 30:00 – Mark states that it takes a lot of grit and determination because it would have been so easy on multiple occasions for Roderick to throw the towel, but he didn’t. He continued challenging and pushing himself to new limits.

Three Key Points

  1. Collage image with mountainous background displaying Finding Your Summit logo, episode number and photos of both Mark Pattison and Roderick SewellRoderick remembers how he and his mom went to go see The Pursuit of Happyness, and they both stared at each other because it was so surreal. Especially, he remembers the scene where he was with his son in the bathroom, and his son was trying to sleep and somebody was trying to break in the door because they needed to go to the bathroom. He thinks his mom saw tears in his eyes, and she was crying.
  2. When it came to team sport, Roderick was usually wrapped up. Then finally he got into a program where he had all these different sports that he could do, without any limitation. If you put your child in every sport—let them try and see what fits for them—and then watch them grow and develop as a person through that.
  3. Today Roderick is living in Colorado Springs and is training for Para-cycling now. He has switched from Para-swimming, which was a fun career. He represented the USA on three national teams, his highest being World Championship.

Tweetable Quotes

I was born with missing tibias in both of my legs, causing my legs to be amputated.” – Roderick Sewell

She was a single mother, who is very proud.” – Roderick Sewell

He has had to wear prosthetics for most of his life, or since I guess this happened when he was like 18 years old.” – Mark Pattison

That’s one thing she made sure—we had somewhere to stay.” – Roderick Sewell

The resentment came when I was a typical teenager.” – Roderick Sewell

I didn’t compete in my first Ironman until I was 27 years old.” – Roderick Sewell

It was interesting the way your style of swinging your hips around, and as you came into the finish line there.” – Mark Pattison

At 16, I’m still like playing wheelchair basketball through high school.” – Roderick Sewell

So July comes around, I get a spot from Ironman to compete at the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hawaii.” – Roderick Sewell

Before moving to New York, I was doing 10,000 meters a day—or at least every other day.” – Roderick Sewell


Resources Mentioned

Roderick Sewell: Website | Instagram

Mark Pattison YouTube Channel


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