An American man has become the first person to travel across Antarctica alone and without assistance, according to the BBC. Colin O’Brady completed his death-defying trek in 53 days, beating British Army Captain Louis Rudd in a 921-mile race. “As I pulled my sled over this invisible line, I accomplished my goal: to become the first person in history to traverse the continent of Antarctica coast to coast solo, unsupported and unaided. While the last 32 hours were some of the most challenging hours of my life, they have quite honestly been some of the best moments I have ever experienced,” O’Brady said on Instagram. O’Brady, whose Twitter profile says that he lives in Portland, Oregon, and Rudd left from the Ronne Ice Shelf on Nov. 3. They had met several days prior at a hotel bar in Chile, deciding at the time to turn their individual efforts into a race. O’Brady had been told by doctors some 10 years ago that he might not walk normally again after suffering extensive burns during a 2008 trip to Thailand. O’Brady did recover, however, ultimately climbing the highest peaks on each of the seven continents and trekking to the highest point in every U.S. state, the BBC reports.