April 3rd, 2012

I live in Champaign, Illinois, home of the University of Illinois Fighting Illini. For those of you that aren’t familiar with the area, Champaign is located between cornfields and soybeans about three hours south of Chicago, three hours northeast of St. Louis and two hours west of Indianapolis; in other words, I live in the middle of nowhere –or for fans of Jason Aldean… in one of those “fly over states.”

Visit PBS Medal Quest to read the rest of this blog and to find out more about Paralympic sport!

Three-Time Paralympian Looks to Add to Medal Case

March 13th, 2012

Hey everyone! I know it’s been way too long but for those of you that are still out there following me, thank you! I promise to start blogging again soon. For now, be sure to check out this recently published article by Will Jones at NJ Today.

Three-Time Paralympian Looks to Add to Medal Case

Team USA ready for competition to begin at 2011 IPC Athletics World Championships

January 19th, 2011

Team USA ready for competition to begin at the 2011 IPC Athletics World Championships

Please continue to check out www.usparalympics.org for more articles and updates on the Championships!

Galli Hails Family Influence Ahead of World Championships

January 5th, 2011

Check out the following article by the IPC: Galli Hails Family Influence Ahead of World Championships

Happy Holidays

December 20th, 2010

The two weeks since the last time I wrote seem to have flown by! I suppose that’s how it always is before a big competition though. Four years between Paralympic Games or World Championships often seems like an eternity at the start. Before I know it, four years is cut down to two years, two years is cut down to one year and then one year is quickly turned into days before the start of competition.

As I mentioned in my last post, I assist in coordinating a holiday party for children with a disability in my community. I am proud to say this year’s party was a huge success! Over 180 children attended and all left the party with arms full of toys and smiles on their faces. While I enjoyed planning for the holiday party; I greatly appreciate the relief that I felt when it was all over. It is always a struggle to juggle “real life” and training. With the party complete, I am able to focus 100 percent of my efforts on training again and it feels great.

I wish I could say the weather has been sunny and 80°F but not all dreams come true. J We are having a harsh winter here in Champaign with snow and cold temperatures. But I think it is during times like this that the champion within me emerges. Training becomes more than a physical challenge. As I am training indoors, the majority of my workouts are based off of maximum speed effort on a particular day. That means every day I am challenged to hit a high speed in my warm-up. But as any athlete knows, as the week goes on, fatigue sets in and hitting a max speed becomes tougher. This is when I have to dig within myself and find the strength to succeed.

As mentioned in my previous post, I have a great team of athletes I train with every day. It is from these athletes that I draw the strength to push myself forward. One of my teammates and good friends, Amanda McGrory, is a great inspiration for me. She is one of those individuals that is able to push through pain and push her body to the next level. I have always admired this about her. Having strong competitors and individuals for teammates creates a great training environment for us all. But I particularly enjoy it because I don’t have to imagine what my competitors are doing. Instead, I can look to my left and see them training next to me. As a naturally competitive person, this only inspires me to work harder every day I am in the gym.

The Christmas holiday is fast approaching. As with competition, the holiday season often seems far away and then before I realize it, it is upon me! This year, I will be spending the holidays with my family in New Jersey. I am looking forward to a week of rest, good food and good laughs with loved ones. Wishing you all Happy Holidays and a Happy New Year! See you in 2011!

Gearing up for World Champs!

December 8th, 2010

I can’t believe it is December already! Only one month before the USA team departs for Sydney, Australia for a pre-World Championships training camp. As I sit here writing this blog, the snow is piling up outside. I can’t help but think back to the months before Beijing in 2008 and the sunny, warm weather I experienced while training for the Paralympic Games. With the season flip-flopped this year, my training schedule has also undergone some changes. Generally at this time of year, my biggest concern is shopping for holiday gifts for my family and friends. This year, however, I find myself trying to juggle training and the holidays as I prepare for World Championships.

I have had a quiet fall season of racing. As I’m not much of a marathon racer, my opportunities to compete were few and far between after August. I have, however, had the chance to travel to sunny Chula Vista, California throughout the fall months to train with Team USA. Chula Vista is home to one of the United States Olympic Committee’s Olympic and Paralympic Training Centers. Team USA has gathered in Chula Vista three times this fall. We have had a great time seeing old teammates and getting to know new ones. The best part about being at the training center is that there is nothing to do but train. The facility offers a great training environment with a track, fields, a weightroom, a medical center, a cafeteria, supportive personnel and of course a game room. Chula Vista has offered everyone a chance to train in warm weather without any distractions of daily life. There are days I wish I lived there all year long!

I have called Champaign, Illinois home for the last eight years. In 2002, I moved out here from New Jersey to attend University and I haven’t left! I am lucky because every day I train with some of the best wheelchair racers in the world. The downfall to living in Illinois is that winter weather can be harsh here. Since October, I have been training indoors, which is unusual for a sport that typically takes place in the summer months here in the U.S. I train in a facility on campus at the University. There is a place we’ve named the “roller room” within our facility where there are seven rollers set up for cold weather training. (A roller is a racing wheelchair’s equivalent to a treadmill.) Unfortunately, the rollers aren’t as high-tech as some of the new treadmills; so, there is not TV watching going on or video game races taking place. Just a stereo and four concrete walls to keep me company. Luckily, I often train with two or three of my teammates, which is always entertaining.

Although I would love for sport to be my only job, I also do keep a part-time job at the University and I am busy with volunteer activities. Currently, I am helping to coordinate a holiday party for children with a disability in the Champaign area. I have been involved with the party since I moved to Champaign but I have only helped to plan the party the last four years. It is a lot of work but it all pays off when I see 200 plus children having a good time, laughing and making new friends. So I am off for now to go sort through children’s wishlists and the many toys that have been donated!

IPC Athletics Worlds 2011 Trailer

November 19th, 2010

Watching this video got me excited for the upcoming IPC World Championships, which will be held in Christchurch, New Zealand in January. Hope you are pumped too!

IPC Athletics Worlds 2011 Trailer

Pillow Power Could be the Key to Galli’s World Championship’s Success!

November 16th, 2010

Check out this article from the IPC: Pillow Power Could be the Key to Galli’s World Championship’s Success!

London 2012: Athletes to Watch

September 10th, 2010

Check out the following article at US Paralympics discussing “Athletes to Watch” at the upcoming 2012 Paralympic Games in London.

London 2012: Athletes to Watch

Show of Strength: Henry H. Kessler 10k in the News!

July 7th, 2010

Click the link below to read an article on the Henry H. Kessler 10k. I have been competing in this race for as long as I can remember and look forward to returning every year. This year was no exception when I won my 9th title as winner of the Female Open Division.

Show of Strength by Lauren Scrivo – Sports N Spokes Magazine

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