ALI Group's Survivor Series featuring Turia Pitt
As part of the ALI Group Survivor Series, we were fortunate enough to welcome Turia Pitt to our online stage to talk about her incredible story of survival and her ongoing pursuit of happiness to 219 brokers on Friday, 13th November. You can watch a short excerpt from our webinar with Turia below.
It goes without saying, Turia Pitt has become an Australian household name but if you weren’t all too familiar with Turia’s story, we are sure after hearing her speak on the webinar, Turia is a name you won’t soon forget. If unfortunately you were unable to attend on Friday, we have you covered in this article.
Turia made her way into the hearts of Australians and millions of people around the world when at the young age of 24-years-old, she encountered an out of control grassfire during a 100km ultramarathon in the Australian outback. In a traumatic turn of events, Turia was trapped by the flames, suffering full thickness burns to 65% of her body.
Turia was found, and airlifted out of the remote desert in Kimberley WA, barely alive. Despite overwhelming odds, she survived but not without significant complications. Turia lost seven fingers, underwent over 200 operations, spent months upon months in hospital and was in recovery for over 2 years.
Turia in hospital during her recovery, photo sourced and credited to Channel 9 Australia.
Now, imagine, being a 24-year-old model, athlete and mining engineer with a double degree from university, living an active and adventurous lifestyle with your partner, to one day wake up and be faced with knowing you will never work again in the career you had built for yourself and you now need to embark on completely rebuilding your life and exceeding every expectation which had been placed upon you.
Turia’s courage and strength in the face of such adversity truly embodies the Australian fighting spirit and what the ALI Survivor Series encompasses. Turia is living proof of how with the right mindset and outlook, we can achieve anything.
During the webinar with Turia, she spoke candidly about her journey of survival, her upbringing, how she has learnt to adapt and move forward by shifting her thinking from disempowering to empowering and how practicing daily gratitude has helped her to consciously focus on the positives in life, when it can be all too easy to focus on the negatives.
In a charming and hilarious recount of the moment she was introduced to her physiotherapist, Turia said,
“One morning, a short, bald, fat man with a thick gold chain around his neck walked in, I thought he was a gangster. Then he said to me, good morning Turia, my name is Frank and I’m your physiotherapist and I’m here to teach you how to stand again. And so I said, good morning Frank, no thanks mate, not interested. Frank did not take no for an answer, and before I knew it he had proceeded over to the side of my bed, jerked me up right, swung my legs over the side and then he grabbed me by my shoulders and looked at me in my eyes and said ok, now, we’re going to stand. He pulled me up onto my own two shaky feet, and I remember I was sobbing and howling all over his fat neck and his gold chain”.
Humour aside, Turia recalls that exact moment as being the hardest of her whole journey and it wasn’t because of the pain, it was because she then realised the enormity of the task that lay ahead of her. Turia, went from having to learn to stand and walk again to take on challenge after challenge and consistently improve herself. Stating, we all need to own our challenges in life. To keep moving forward and be consistent. Turia comments that progression and improvement is not linear, some days might have set backs but it’s the consistency and the drive to keep moving forward which sees you through.
In 2016, Turia went on to compete in the Hawaiian Ironman, inclusive of a 3.8km swim, a 180km bike ride and a 42km run.
Turia Pitt during the Hawaiian Ironman race, photo by Sean M Haffey, sourced from Getty Images.
Turia, who was once known as the young woman who survived “un-survivable burns”, has gone on to be known as one of the toughest athletes in the world. More than that, she is a best selling author, a motivational speaker, has raised millions for non-for-profit organisation Interplast, and is now a mother, to her two young boys, Hakavai and Rahiti and lives her life alongside her Fiancé Michael Hoskin, motivating others to change their frame of mind and overcome the challenges in life, as she has done and continues to do.
You can learn more about Turia and her ongoing journey on her website:
The brokers who attended
It was fantastic to see brokers from all around Australia tuning into the 2nd instalment of the ALI Survivor Series, with many calling Turia a beautiful and brave woman who shows so much courage.
If you weren’t able to attend Turia’s Survivor Series feature, be sure to keep an eye out for our next guest speaker, Darren Lehmann, former Australian cricket coach who underwent bypass surgery on his heart after being rushed to hospital with chest pains on his 50th birthday.
If you have any questions or require any further information, please reach out to your ALI BDM.