Mountaineer Omar Samra posted a photo on his Facebook page of him posing with Egyptian triathlete Omar Nour. Theirs is a match made in sporting heaven. Samra went from a hectic career in finance to being the first Egyptian to reach the top of Mt. Everest. (He also strives to be the first Egyptian in space.) Nour went from hitting 230 pounds while starting a telecommunications business to training to become the first triathlete from Egypt to make it to the Olympics. The story starts in Cairo.
When he was just three years old, Nour’s parents moved to Lausanne, Switzerland. After some time, they picked up again, this time to live in Washington D.C.
Nour completed high school and attended John Hopkins University before starting Tot Solutions – a telecommunications business – with his brother Diaa.
The two started working long hours and lost track of their diet. Eventually Nour put on 70 pounds, according to Colorado Daily. One day when he was getting in his car, his pants split. That is when he decided he needed to get healthy again.
So, he did what any person would do (not): he started training to compete in triathlons.
At the end of his first, the Nation’s Triathlon in Washington D.C., he befriended the mayor and started training with him and other businessmen. His brother was not surprised.
“I think the reason he gets out of bed everyday is to talk to people,” Diaa told the paper. “He’s the biggest extrovert I know. ‘Who can I talk to today?’ He just loves to meet people, share with people, be with people.”
Eventually Diaa sat down with his brother to discuss the business.
He gave him the choice either to continue to train as a hobby and devote himself more fully to the business, or to quit the company and go pro.
Omar chose the latter, and eventually moved to Colorado in order to train with Neal Henderson.
Although he is considered the clown in the training group, the guy who is always smiling and supporting others, Omar Nour has surmounted some incredible odds to get as far as he has.
While most endurance athletes start at a very young age, he was already 29 when he started, but that hasn’t discouraged him one bit.
Omar didn’t manage to make it to London, but he is on a mission to make it to Rio. And if he does, his brother said, that would be great for Egypt.
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