She can do it all, and empower you to do it all at the same time. No matter where you are in your running journey, Salley will be there to encourage you along the way. Megan from Stroller Warriors® 29 Palms told us Salley "can, and will, run with absolutely A.N.Y.O.N.E. You need someone to pace you to run a sub-4- hour marathon? She's your girl. You need someone to pace you to run a 39-minute 5K? She'll do that, too. You need someone at the last minute to pace you to PR your full? She'll register for said marathon a week before the race and match you step for step while pushing you to your PR. When you ask Salley to run with you, the distance and pace are not even a consideration for her. She'll jump up and go because she just loves to run. She will talk your ear off for the entire run, and she will keep you laughing and smiling the whole time. She's awesome and supportive. She loves to see her friends succeed and accomplish their goals."
Salley retired from the Marine Corps after serving 20 years, and is now a spouse to an active duty Marine. She is also a mother to three girls, aged 11, 13, and 15. Naturally, as any Marine and military spouse would, Sally adapts to any situation. Moving to San Diego proved difficult for a job in teaching, so she is going back to school to pursue a career in ultrasound imaging. “As I am reflecting on my career, what I have done or accomplished or not done, what comes to mind is that LIFE is a career. Every decision you make, the paths you follow, and those you meet along the way all impact your everyday of life.”
Salley has always been a runner. “I was always running somewhere, it was a way for me to be free with my thoughts and ideas. I have always loved running and it has always been a part of my life. It has been the one thing I can always count on being there for me no matter where life take me.” She also played softball, surfed, and anything else outdoors. Team sports such as cross country and track were natural choices. Salley’s first marathon was at age 18, the Honolulu Marathon. “I think that is when I got hooked on the longer distances.”
Looking for more challenge, Salley jumped up her mileage and terrain with trail running in the 1990s. Salley has run several ultra-marathons that include 50ks, 50-milers, and has even made the amazing leap to 100 miles. “I always had it in the back of my head to run 100 miles non-stop. Being in the Marine Corps at times made it hard to put in the time needed on my feet to accomplish this goal. Then I had kids and life just seemed to get in the way. When I moved to Twentynine Palms and was once again unemployed, I made the decision to run the SD100 before I turned 50. Last year I accomplished that goal. It was an amazing feeling knowing that no matter your age you can go after your goals. Since then I have completed two other 100-milers and even got 2nd place female finisher and a PR by 6 hrs. I am currently training for another 100 in July. This race will be a lot tougher than the others I have done. My next goal is to run the Bigfoot 200-miler next year.”
Twentynine Palms is where Salley met Stroller Warriors by chance during an early morning long run. “I ran along the quiet desert road at 0600 in the morning with an amazing group of women at all levels of running ability. I was impressed with the ease and support they were giving to each other. They were so welcoming to me, a stranger who just happened to be going in their direction. Nervous to join the club because she had older children, Salley jumped right in anyway. She has embraced the culture and mission of Stroller Warriors with a passion for the idea that you get out of it what you put into it. “I believe it is a two-lane highway, and as much as they impact me, I impact them along the way. It is not just a running club, it is much more as is evident in the charities and support that is given to the communities in which they reside in. SW has given me the opportunity to engage with women that I would not have met on my own.”
Some favorite Stroller Warrior memories: After a few months with SW, Salley planned to run the OC Marathon. Several SWs were running, so they all carpooled and split a hotel. “We made it a girls’ weekend out. It was a lot of laughs and close personnel bonding, as we were all sharing beds. In fact I told one of the ladies she was the first person I have had in my bed other than my husband in 20 years.”
While a member of SW Miramar, Salley joined a group to run the Holiday Half Marathon expecting a fun run followed by mimosas and breakfast. It turned out there was a freezing cold 0600 start time and “it took me until mile nine to warm up. Our post-race photo said it all as a big wave washed over us. To this day every time someone mentions this race the only thing I can say is that to think twice when someone says how much fun it will be.”
“For all the spouses out there do not be afraid to jump into the unknown. It will turn out to be the best thing for you. SWs are all about getting involved and connected to your community and learning about the resources that are available to you. They will be there for you when you’re sick, tired, overwhelmed, hurting and when your spouse deploys. They will cheer you on, cry with you, pick you up when you stumble, laugh with you, and sit in silence with you. Do not be intimidated by what they can do or how fast they are, but be encouraged by the journey they will take you on. Remember a mile is always a mile no matter how long it takes a person to get there.”
Favorite place to be is usually on a mountain top.
Completed an ECO challenge, which was a 7 day race from Durango, CO to Albuquerque, NM.
Has run marathons is 7 different countries
Completed the R2R2R which is a run in the Grand Canyon (this is running from ridge to ridge to ridge of the Grand Canyon...check it out at www.r2r2r.org)
Donated road racing medals to the charity Medals 4 Medals…over 3 totes full of them!
Fastest marathon at 2:48 and slowest was at 5:20.
Fastest 5k was 18:22 and slowest was at 26:45.
“I have realized thru out the years it is no longer about how fast you are or in my case was, but the journey it takes to be able to run another day.”