Minda Dentler

Motivate, Inspire, Achieve

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Children’s Picture Book

March 2024

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Available wherever books are sold!

Minda always felt different from other kids. Her leg braces and crutches made it hard for her to run and play. Sometimes she fell. Sometimes she got mad. And sometimes she wanted to give up. But Minda never did. She worked hard to show everyone she could do anything she put her mind to!

This is the true story of how Minda became the first female wheelchair athlete to complete the world’s toughest triathlon: The Ironman World Championship.

Join Minda as she takes on life’s hurdles – from climbing stairs to crossing finish lines. Learn how she overcame obstacles, faced down fears, and achieved goals that seemed impossible. It’s a blueprint for raising resilient, confident, and unstoppable individuals. Discover Minda’s courageous spirit and maybe YOU will be inspired to rethink what’s possible!


An empowering story of perseverance and overcoming the odds.

An inspiring story that opens up our hearts to ourselves and the people around us, and that shows the value of perseverance, determination, and self-confidence.
I LOVED this book! As a professor in education, I can use this in so many ways to teach educators. A book that has so many themes– resilience, grit, disabilities, overcoming adversity, differences, adoption and growth mindset–and I could go on and on. The illustrations were beautiful too. I cannot wait to purchase this book and use it in my classes.
Minda’s strength and fortitude are noteworthy and inspiring. She has faced many obstacles and barriers, but she has persevered. She followed her dreams, chased her goals, and succeeded.
The readers see and feel that love in the pages of this book. Not only is the story interesting and joyous, the illustrations are just as fun and give a vibrancy that makes someone want to keep turning the pages and read this more than once.
A beautiful book that inspires those who have different abilities to reach for the stars, grow within themselves, and never back down. I absolutely adore a children’s book that teaches that we are all different and regardless of that, we deserve to respect each other, be kind to one another, and never let life stop us.
I love picture books that are based on the real lives of people who overcame obstacles and accomplished amazing things! I think it’s important to let young readers know that success looks different for different people…although Minda had accomplished so much, she knew she was capable of more and pushed herself to reach for her goals. Minda didn’t succeed the first time she attempted a triathlon. She had to go back and train more until she was ready to try again. I think it’s all the more inspiring that she didn’t give up and continued striving for what she knew she was capable of!
This book was delightful. But entertaining and educational. I love that it showed failure and triumph. I appreciated the illustrations of a woman with muscles. And including sleep and good eating as necessary for success.

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Motivate, Inspire, Achieve

About Minda

Minda is the first female wheelchair athlete to complete the Ironman World Championship

Minda’s life is one of inspiration, courage, and determination; she will have you on your feet ready to face your personal Ironman and set even higher goals. As an infant in India, Minda contracted polio, resulting in the paralysis of her legs, and was left in the care of an orphanage. Adopted by an American family, she moved to Spokane, Washington and underwent a series of surgeries on her hips, legs and back, which enabled her to walk with leg braces and crutches. Undeterred by her disability, she became an independent, educated woman with an intention and drive to face and overcome the many obstacles she has encountered throughout her life.

Minda’s athletic journey began as a young adult when she discovered the sport of handcycling.  Soon after, she threw herself into the sport of triathlon.  In 2013, Minda became the first female wheelchair athlete to complete the Ironman World Championship, in Kona, Hawaii. This accomplishment led Minda to be nominated for an ESPN ESPY Award.

This athletic feat was not easy, as a wheelchair triathlete; Minda completes all three disciplines of a triathlon with only her arms.  Her first attempt was a complete failure.  Her second attempt was a success due in part to her perseverance and her determination, but also her unique personal philosophy and ability to see beyond setbacks and disability.

Minda now inspires people around the world to see beyond their fears and get up, set goals, and conquer their personal Ironman.  Every goal, athletic or personal goal requires hard work and training.  Let her share with you her personal story. Minda is an athlete, speaker, polio survivor and advocate, author, a mom, and a force to be reckoned with.

Minda lives in Scottsdale, AZ with her husband and daughter.


Half-Ironman triathlons completed on six continents


Ironman triathlons completed


largest single audience


children vaccinated against polio in India


children’s book written

Her story has been

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Motivate, Inspire, Achieve

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Minda is the first female wheelchair athlete to complete the Ironman World Championship

Minda speaks about:

  • Overcoming adversity

  • Self-belief: believe it, see it, positivity

  • Persistence: never give up

  • Planning for success

  • Facing fear and failure

  • Finding the why

Whether you are an individual business owner, a member of a small or medium sized organization or the head of a fortune 500 company you will benefit from the lessons of Minda Dentler’s career as a triathlete and polio survivor.  As the first female wheelchair athlete to complete the Ironman World Championship after being paralyzed from the hips down by polio, she has overcome the impossible.

Through her presentation, Minda shares her incredible story which impacts and inspires audiences around the world.  Minda leads audiences to realize their potential by facing their fears, setting goals, planning, thinking positively and remaining determined despite setbacks.  Minda is engaging, passionate and funny and touches people in a profound and memorable way.

You’re in good company

Clients have said

Minda has a highly motivating story and is a great storyteller! I loved it!

Minda is extremely moving! She touched my heart and my soul. Unbelievable!

What an inspiration! To see Minda identify, adapt, overcome and accomplish her dreams is beautiful and amazing!

Mind blowing! Minda is the ultimate inspiration and not to be matched!

Contact Minda

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Swim, Bike and Run

As a child, Minda watched from the sidelines as her siblings participated in many sports. Her athletic journey began as a young adult living in NYC, when Minda was given an opportunity to try handcycling. After a few years she made the switch to triathlon, and within 10 years, Minda has won two USA National Triathlon titles (2009, 2011) and completed 35 triathlon and road races. This included her first Ironman Distance Triathlon in Louisville in 2012, just 6 weeks prior to her first attempt at the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii.

A wheelchair paratriathlete, Minda completes all three disciplines of a triathlon with only her arms. After a failed attempt at the Ironman World Championship in 2012, Minda returned to the race even stronger in 2013 and she persevered under difficult conditions, pressure and heat.

On October 12, 2013, Minda added her name to the Ironman World Championship history books. With her 14:39:14 finish in Kona, Minda became the first official woman handcyclist to complete this event, by swimming 2.4 miles, handcycling 112 miles and pushing a racing wheelchair 26.2 miles.

This accomplishment led Minda to have the honor of being nominated for an ESPN ESPY Award for Best Female Athlete with a Disability in 2014.  Minda is the only female wheelchair athlete in the world to have completed four Ironman distance triathlons AND six Half-Ironman distance triathlons on six continents.

Today, Minda continues to work for a large global insurer while training part-time with her husband and daughter.

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Polio Eradication, Global Childhood Immunization

Minda was born in India and contracted polio as an infant, leaving her legs paralyzed.  When she was three, Minda was adopted by an American family.  She earned her MBA from Baruch College in New York after earning a BA from the University of Washington.  Minda currently works at a large global insurer.

In 2013, she became the first female wheelchair athlete to complete the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii. This accomplishment set her on course as an advocate in the global fight against polio.

Minda is incredibly passionate about using her platform as an athlete, speaker and polio survivor.  She has written articles for Time and Huffington Post on the importance of global immunization efforts and polio eradication. She has served as a global advocate for Rotary International and the UN Foundation Shot at Life campaign and was a 2017 Aspen Institute New Voices Fellow.

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