Member Spotlight: Laura Galligan

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This edition of our Member Spotlight features Charity Miles member Laura Galligan! Laura, who works in the insurance field, completed the 2019 Boston Marathon while overcoming a nagging knee injury. Check it out!

“I’m originally from New Jersey but live in Colorado now. I’ve been married for almost 13 years, but we’ve been together for 17 years. We live in CO with our boxer Goose. We love to travel, ski, run, paddle board & drink craft beer!”

Laura’s running journey began back in 2005. “I have been running for about 13 years to stay healthy & challenge myself. It wasn’t until about 8 years ago I realized that I wanted more, so I started becoming a little bit more competitive with running, then the dreams of the Boston [Marathon] set in. I ran my first marathon in Fargo, ND in May 2018 qualifying for Boston 2019.”

Soon after qualifying for the Boston Marathon, though, Laura sustained a significant knee injury. “Plagued with an injury for the rest of 2018, Boston was going to be a stretch! I got as healthy as I could, put together a 12-week marathon training block & prayed for the best.”

“I ran Boston with only the goal of making it to the finish anyway I could. I went into the race injured & a steroid shot in my knee was my Hail Mary. I run with all my heart & soul! I crossed the finish line of the 123rd Boston Marathon at 3:57 limping, but I did it! Not the race I was expecting but I did it & can call myself a Boston marathoner.”

Laura was introduced to Charity Miles about a year ago after chatting with fellow Charity Miler, Margaret Spring. “I heard of Charity Miles from Margaret Spring (@runner4cake). I met her at a @womenofrunning event that was in support of a little boy named Connor! So I joined the ConnorMcStrong team! I’m beyond happy I met her & Randi Lich (@runitlikerandi). I can not wait to meet Connor!”

When asked which charity she supports, Laura responded “I support the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society on the app. It’s especially for Connor, but it holds a different kind of special place in my heart for our fur baby who died before he was 6 years old from T-Cell Lymphoma. While I know a dog is different than a child, my husband & I are dog parents & Roo was our baby. So supporting the LLS is near & dear for many reasons.”

For the last several years Laura has documented her running journey on her Instagram account, sharing her experiences with her nearly two thousand followers. “It’s a funny story. My husband actually created my page & I thought it was a picture-share app between the two of us! I didn’t realize others could see my posts. I was very new to the social media scene. But it quickly turned into my running journal. Documenting my running journey, success, and injuries & leading me ultimately to an amazing community of runners. I’ve met some of the most amazing people, both in person & virtually.”

“I love running because it helps me stay healthy (minus all my injuries) & active. It’s my therapy, my alone time to think or clear my head. And it’s something you can do alone or with a group. It’s definitely a sport you can mold to your needs. And I love the running community, runners just get other runners. We’re all a bit crazy!”

Wondering what a normal workout looks like for Laura? “I’m currently injured and rehabbing. Unfortunately, right now most of my workouts consist of PT exercises. Just getting strength & motion back. Before injury, I would run 5 days a week averaging about 20-30 miles. Tuesdays & Thursdays were strength & mobility days, working on mainly the lower half. Lots of deadlifts, squats, lunges, step-ups, bridges & sled pushes.”

“Currently, I’m dealing with ITBS on my left side which I feel friction on the outside of my knee. I dealt with the same thing on my right side last year. I am working on strengthening my hips, glutes & core in hopes I don’t get plagued with this in the future. I’m also working on a lot of my forms. The more efficient your form the less time you spend on the ground making you faster & less prone to injury. I’ve been working on my form for over a year it’s a very slow process to retrain yourself & [eliminate] bad habits.”

When asked why she uses Charity Miles as opposed to other apps available to her, Laura responded “I use Charity Miles because it supports 2 things simultaneously- giving back & being active. Plus it’s so easy. Why wouldn’t you? Someone is donating money to my chosen charity because I’m logging the miles.”

“My main goal right now is to get 100% healthy before running any races, but I’ve got some lofty goals in mind. one of which is redemption in Boston! I would love to run the New York Marathon & re-qualify for Boston, but I will be focusing on shorter distance races over the next year.”

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