“I shall try, to tri, my first triathlon..Ironman Cozumel 2015” Words to myself


Before Taking Positive Psychology I immediately knew what I’d apply the course’s teachings to: my journey towards becoming an Ironman. Becoming an Ironman (IM) consists of swimming 2.4 miles, cycling 112 miles, and then running 26.2 miles all under 16 hours 59 minutes and 59 seconds. I began my journey in March of 2013 when I signed up for IM New Zealand 2014; come November 2013, the week of Thanksgiving, I had to withdraw from the race after being diagnosed with a gastrointestinal autoimmune disease that severely disabled me for a few months. After a year and half being on prednisone and gaining 50lbs from the medication, I was slowly tapered off and started to feel like myself again. My plan was to do Ironman during 2015 because after college graduation in December, I planned on getting a second job which wouldn’t allow for much IM training. Fast forward to January 2015 and I’m registered yet again for IM, this time for IM Cozumel set for November 29, 2015.


Excited as I was to be reaching back to my kind of normal both physically and mentally, there were just two obvious road blocks that would prove to challenge my time management and approach towards training – my full time job, and attending the accelerated online college program at Chaminade. It is now November 17, just a week and a half away from the race and I can honestly say, “I am not as ready as I should be, or want to be…I may not finish.” What may come to a surprise though is my next statement, “regardless of what happens on race day, I promise myself to try 110%, leave everything out on the race course, have fun, and be grateful that I have the opportunity to race at a resort destination in Mexico.”

Go….leaving negative self-talk behind

Why are those statements shocking? Because prior to taking Positive Psychology I had a lot of negative self-talk such as “you didn’t do a long bike you’re behind on your biking, you haven’t been running much you’ll never finish a marathon after a bike, you’re going to fail, etc.” What contributed to this rather exponential change in perspective is what I learned in Positive Psychology about resilience, reality, and optimism. I normally consider myself a rather optimistic person, but with such a demanding and intimidating race on the horizon, this was the first time I caught myself in doubt and negativity. What I will take away from this course is simply this, my troubles are temporary, the only solution at this point is to accept the fact that I simply couldn’t train as much as I wanted to while maintaining my other responsibilities. Acknowledgement of reality, acceptance of the situation, and appreciation for the experience is what I’ve learned. The silver lining? I’m light years ahead of where I was two years ago when I was sick, which is already a success in my eyes. Mexico here I come!!!

About the author: Ihilani Kali is a student at Chaminade University online program. Her future goals are to work in an administrative capacity either in the government or tourism sector. In her free time she enjoys training for triathlons, DIY projects, and spending time with friends and family.


‘We are the Positive Psychology People’

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