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Laura Shand is the owner-operator of Cowichan Valley Running in Mill Bay, BC.

Raised in Victoria, Laura has always loved the island, but hasn’t always loved running. At the ripe old age of 17, Laura thought her running ship had sailed. It was too late for her. She would never run. Nope. Not ever. Instead, she volunteered for her high school’s cross-country and track and field teams as a manager. She enjoyed the administrative responsibilities and appreciated the sport from behind the scenes, marvelling at the talented kids sure to become elites.

Laura Shand

In 1999, while avoiding her economics textbooks at Uvic, Laura registered for a learn-to-run clinic. Imagine that! You can learn to run! The thought had never occurred to her. Coached by members of Uvic’s track team, Laura learned to run one minute at a time. Before she knew it she was running 20 minutes straight, and within a couple of months she completed her first 5K race. She was hooked.

A self-proclaimed “clinic junkie,” Laura participated in countless back-to-back running clinics and found herself completing the Royal Victoria Marathon in 2007. Although she only finished one marathon, she has since completed several half marathons, countless 10K races, and volunteered as a run leader for both half marathon and 10K clinics. More recently, Laura has taken up trail running (something she never thought she would enjoy) and is seeing running in a whole new light because as she learned at 19, you CAN teach an old dog new tricks!

A firm believer that anyone can run, Laura is thrilled to share her knowledge and experience with the running community in the Cowichan Valley, and looks forward to expanding her network of running buddies.