Polar Preet faces surgery and explains impact of record-breaking trek on her body

Watch: Polar Preet explains impact of record-breaking trek on her body.

Record-breaking British Army Captain Preet Chandi says she is waiting for surgery and told Forces News about the impact of her Antarctic trek on her body.

'Polar Preet', as she is known, covered 922 miles (1,485 km) in 70 days and 16 hours in freezing temperatures, surpassing the previous world record of 907 miles (1,459.8 km) set by fellow soldier Henry Worsley, a retired Lieutenant Colonel, in 2015.

Severely adverse conditions stopped Capt Chandi from meeting her own coast-to-coast target – around 100 miles from where she was picked up – but even with her ultimate goal out of reach, she refused to give up and kept pushing to see how far she could go.

During the trek, she picked up an injury known as "polar thigh" as her body was battered by the hostile Antarctic weather.

Capt Chandi explained: "It most commonly happens on the thighs, but I managed to get it on my calf, and you can get it on different parts of the body.

"It's where the wind was basically hitting me, I still had three layers of clothing there.

"It actually appeared like a bruise to start with, and I actually didn't realise what it was because I'd fallen quite a few times and I actually did think it was a bruise, scabbed over and then the skin started to break".

Watch: Princess of Wales meets 'incredible' Captain Polar Preet.

Capt Chandi added: "I lost 20 kilogrammes, and then obviously it's not just fat that you lose. I've lost muscle as well and I can feel that, definitely."

The polar explorer explained that she is now waiting for a skin graft procedure, likely taking skin from her other leg.

Comparing her recent "phase two" expedition to last year's "phase one", she said this year was mentally harder.

"Phase one for me, the 700 miles to the pole, was so much easier in comparison."

Reflecting on her recent Antarctic challenge, Polar Preet told Forces News: "I want to be honest about the highs and the lows – it was great to finish but it was hard, it was a nightmare at times."

Capt Chandi also explained the sacrifices in relation to work: "It was hard to do alongside a full-time job, it was hard to use all of my leave to do it.

"You don't make money from these trips, I took unpaid leave to do this trip, so I wasn't paid while I was there. All of those things, I just want to be honest about."

Polar Preet given special welcome on her return from Antarctic expedition

Asked if people undertaking such challenges shouldn't have to take unpaid leave in order to do so, Capt Chandi said: "To be honest with you, I was happy with that decision and I'm really glad that I was able to take that leave.

"I think what people don't realise is, it's not like this is my job, I have a job.

"The Army have been great. I don't think that I would even have had the idea if I hadn't been in the Army," she added.

Capt Chandi is a physiotherapist from 3 Medical Regiment working at a Regional Rehabilitation Unit in Buckinghamshire, providing rehabilitation for injured soldiers and officers.

In October, the Princess of Wales became a patron of Polar Preet's Antarctica challenge.

The Prince and Princess of Wales even made sure to wish Capt Chandi good luck before she set off on her expedition.

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