Five years ago Kate Sanderson was in hospital after suffering horrific burns in the Kimberley ultra marathon fire. Today she has proudly finished one of the toughest endurance races on the planet.
The 41-year-old suffered burns to 60 per cent of her body and lost part of her foot, after being caught up in the bushfire that also injured Turia Pitt in 2011.
Last night she spoke to current affairs show Sunday Night about her experience, saying: "I got into a crevice and the fire lit my shoulder and I thought, 'This is what it's like to die in a fire'," she said. "I jumped up without thinking and just covered my face, hence my fingers and tendons are gone in my fingers, but I saved my face”.
She said she was devastated at the prospect of never running again. "I never thought I'd get through it."
However just a few weeks ago she proudly completed the six-day, 257km Marathon des Sables through the Sahara Desert. Although she can't run, she walked the entire way.
The race was particularly gruelling for Sanderson as her extensive skin grafts mean she cannot sweat like an athlete should.
"[It was] absolutely the hardest experience of my life, the hardest challenge I've ever done."
According to Sunday Night, temperatures reached 50 degrees Celcius during the race, and by day four Kate was unable to keep food down and had diarrhoea. By day six, 135 other competitors had pulled out of the race - but Kate was determined to finish.
"To see maybe 300 people out there clapping and cheering you on it was just amazing," she told Sunday Night at the finish line.