There are no words to describe how extraordinary this woman is.
After five years and 200 operations, burns survivor Turia Pitt just completed the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii.
She completed the 3.8km swim, 180km bike ride, and then the 42.2 km marathon, in just over 14 and a half hours.
In an inspirational post on social media, the 29-year old said she “gave it everything.”
Turia Pitt’s story is one many Australians are familiar with. Five years ago, she was competing in an ultra-marathon in Western Australia when she and three other runners became trapped by a huge grass fire.
We often hear about her incredible spirit, athletic prowess and charity work, but in Mia Freedman‘s No Filter podcast, the 29-year old reveals another side: her cheeky humor (she’s actually hilarious), the most challenging, strange and perplexing moments of her recovery, and how she won’t let anything stop her.
During the candid interview the former mining engineer talks about how “awkward” it was to have dead people’s skin grafted onto her own, and how strangers will yank on her hair to see if it’s a wig or not.
“They had to get cadaver skin into Australia from America, because we didn’t have any here, which I find really bizarre. We have a skin bank, but there was no skin in the bank when I had my accident,” she tells Mia.
“They got the skin to Kingsford-Smith Airport [in Sydney], and customs wouldn’t let it through. How awkward is that? So my surgeon just got on the phone and said, ‘Mate, if we don’t get this skin today, this woman is going to die’.”
The burnt skin on Turia’s legs, arms, face, neck and backside — the parts of her body that were exposed to the fire — was removed, and the cadaver skin was applied. “I had [skin from] black people, Asian people, all of those different colours… [I was like] a multi-coloured person quilt,” she laughs.