Pets ruin your life. Let me be more specific, pets ruin your travel life. Yesterday Britt and I once again packed our bags for another adventure, only this time we had to tear ourselves away from our two furry family members that we have come to love more than we thought we ever would, Brix and Bagheera. The problem with loving them so much, is that when we do leave, all we think about is their furry little faces and when we get to come back and see them again!
After an embarrassing amount of goodbyes to our pets, we were on the move and headed for Canada. This is my first time in our Northern Neighbors territory, but thanks to IKEA Britt gets up here quite often for audits. We flew into Buffalo, NY, and after a stern warning for me to remove my sunglasses and some interrogating from the border control officer, we drove across the border into Canada.
This trip was neither work related, nor purely recreational. We came with a mission, to run the Niagara Half Marathon. My grandpa and aunt ran the whole marathon (26.2 miles) while my sister, her fiancé and I ran the half (13.1 miles). Britt, along with my uncle, his wife and her sister, walked the half.
Running is a hobby that most of my family keeps, however it has zero appeal for my sister and I, though we knew we couldn’t dismiss it until we gave it a real try. So, there we were this morning standing at the starting line, not really knowing what we were getting into.
We started off strong, feeling well, and passing those mile markers with ease and grace. We were ecstatic to pass mile marker 3 and 4 within the first 30 minutes, and thought that this whole running 13 miles would be a breeze. That is until we got to mile marker 5, only to find out that the marks were tracking kilometers, not miles. Just like that our 5 miles went down to three, and from there all excitement and high spirits vanished.
Despite being in a beautiful area on a beautiful day, we were miserable. Running just isn’t our thing. Nevertheless, we pressed on, determined to finish! A little after the halfway mark and one water fight at the hydration station later, my sister’s knee began to give out and things went downhill from there, fast! Our legs began to feel like they were filling up with lead, our feet, back, knees and just about every other part of our bodies began to ache. It’s funny, because during training, I had the hardest time regulating my breathing, but everything else was fine. Out of the Texas heat and humidity, my breathing was fine, it was my body that was giving me trouble. Our once strong running form, evolved into more of a hop/limp/shuffle, and we swear the kilometers got longer as we got closer to the finish line.
We might not be runners, but we are determined, and you’d better believe we ran our tired, sore and aching butts across that finish line hand in hand! We did it! I was never happier to sit down, and after some food and stretching, began to feel like myself again. We finished in just about 3 hours, and about one hour later up limped Britt and her gang. She had acquired some nasty blisters early on in the race, but thanks to that determination of hers, she powered through! We all hung around and waited for my grandpa and aunt to finish the full marathon, before hobbling away.