Once a week, 30-year-old Gabriella Salgado commutes almost two hours by bus to Forsa Training Gym in Oak Lawn to work out.
Gabby, who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy after birth, and has very little mobility in her arms and legs wants to participate in the Chicago marathon of 2016.
So for the last four months she has been training with personal trainer and co-owner of Forsa, Maria Torres.
And the progress has been remarkable. While training for her marathon goal, Gabby’s strength and mobility have greatly improved. Four months ago she could barely lift a 4 pound dumbbell, she is now handling the 15 pound ones like a pro.
Gabby, and her mother, are thrilled with her new abilities,
“Just recently, I started to sit up on my own,” Gabby said. “I’ve actually started to stand up over the sink and do the dishes and that never happened.”
But no one who knows Gabriela seems surprised at her determination. After all, this is the same woman who seven years ago decided she wanted to try to walk and told her physical therapist to help her.
Gabby doesn’t take no for an answer. She has her bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree in education and mental health. Finding a job hasn’t been easy but that hasn’t stopped her from being productive. Once a week she volunteers at Little Company of Mary Hospital in its scheduling department.
As far as the marathon, Gabriela is still working hard to achieve that dream.
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