Galen Rupp, Olympic Runner: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

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Everything you need to know about Olympic track and field athlete Galen Rupp. (Getty)

Galen Run is a 30-year-old Olympic track & field athlete. He was born in Oregon on May 8, 1986.

He will be competing in his second Olympics in Rio in the coming weeks. He first competed in the Olympic Games in Beijing in 2008. He will be competing in two events, the men’s marathon and the men’s 10,000m.

Rupp holds multiple records, like being one of only six Americans to have run under 13:00 for 5,000 meters, and has been called “the best American distance runner at the moment” by Outside Online.

Find out more about the athlete below.


1. He’s A Silver Medal Olympian

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Rupp is pictured here (center) with fellow runners Meb Keflezighi from San Diego, California and Jared Ward from Utah at the finish line after the US Men’s Marathon Olympic Team Trials. Rupp finished first. (Getty)

Rupp’s first Olympic games were in Beijing in 2008, where, unfortunately he did not take home a medal. He finished 13th in the 10,000m race with a time of 27:36.99.

In London, however, he sprinted up nine spots. According to USA Track & Field, at the 2012 Olympics, Rupp delivered the “best moment for American distance running since Jim Ryun’s 1,500m silver medal in 1968.” Rupp won silver in the 10,000m, which was the first American medal in the event since Billy Mills’ gold in 1964. That performance came on the heels of a pair of Rupp Olympic Trials records in the 5,000m and 10,000m.


2. He’s Married to Keara Rupp and Has Twins

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Galen Rupp celebrates after winning the Men’s 10000 Meter Final during the 2016 U.S. Olympic Track & Field Team Trials at Hayward Field on July 1, 2016 in Eugene, Oregon, and he brought his daughter onto the track. (Getty)

In an interview with Runner’s World in 2012, Rupp said he felt lucky to be married.

Last September Keara Sammons and I got married and settled here in Portland. Keara ran down at the U of O-she understands the sport. We’ve been together since sophomore year in college. We have a great time traveling together to meets and out to Utah when I’m training at altitude.

In July, 2014, Oregon Live reported that Rupp’s wife gave birth to twins Tuesday in Portland.

Keara Rupp delivered a healthy baby boy and baby girl, both weighing more than six pounds, according to Nike Oregon Project coach Alberto Salazar.


3. He’s a Perfectionist and a Soccer Player

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Galen Rupp might be an established runner but he started out as a soccer player. (Getty)

Track isn’t the also sport Rupp excells at. “I played a lot of soccer games at Delta Park,” Rupp told Runner’s World in 2012. “And yeah, I was that kind of well-rounded perfectionist who got straight A’s in school and wanted to be good at everything.”

Soccer was really important to me…I made varsity at Central as a freshman. I dreamed about playing in college and maybe even beyond college.

That all changed when he crossed paths with his future coach legendary former marathoner Alberto Salazar at the age of 14.

He will just have to settle for being an Olympic runner.


4. He Ran His First Marathon at the Olympic Trials

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Rupp will be competing in the men’s marathon, which he only ran for the first time at the trials. (Getty)

While Rupp is an accomplished distance runner, he is not an accomplished marathoner, even though he is on the U.S. marathon team for the Rio Olympics this year.

Rupp competed in his first-ever marathon at the Olympic Trials in February, 2016. He delivered a “controlled, dominant performance that saw him cruise to victory in 2:11:12,” according to Outside Online. He was more than a minute ahead of runner-up Meb Keflezighi, a leader in this event.

He ran 1:00:30 in his debut half marathon, in New York City in 2010.


5. He Ran for The University of Oregon

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Rupp has a successful running streak during his time at the University of Oregon. (Getty)

Rupp graduated from the University of Oregon in 2009. During his time there he ran for the Oregon Ducks. He was particularly successful during his senior season, according to USATF, when he won five NCAA titles and the inaugural Bowerman Award, which signifies the men’s and women’s national track and field athlete of the year.

Also while at Oregon, he joined up with teammates Matthew Centrowitz, Andrew Wheating and Shadrack Kiptoo-Biwott to set the outdoor collegiate 4×1-mile relay record of 16:03.24, says USATF. Finally, as a Duck in 2009, he became the first person in NCAA history to win the 3,000m, 5,000m and the distance medley relay at the same indoor championships.

That same year outdoors he won the NCAA 5,000m and 10,000m championships, according to USATF.

In just 2007 alone he was a seven-time NCAA All-American (twice outdoors, four times indoors and once in cross country).