These twins finished 1-2 of all Canadian females in their first Boston Marathon | CBC News

Must Read

Kim and Michelle Krezonoski started their running careers on the dirt camp roads of Shuniah Township near Thunder Bay, Ont.

This week, the 30-year-old twins crossed the finish line to become Canada’s top two female Boston Marathon finishers.

In their first Boston event, Michelle completed the 42.2-kilometre race in 2 hours 38 minutes and 23 seconds (2:38:23). Kim was just a couple of minutes behind her with a time of 2:40:50. Hellen Obiri of Kenya successfully defended her title, becoming the first woman to win back to back since 2005.

Michelle and Kim are from northwestern Ontario but now live in Toronto.

“That’s a rare opportunity to have your twin sister line up with you at a world major in the pro field,” said Michelle.

There were about 30,000 participants, including over 1,500 Canadians, from over 100 countries in the 128th Boston Marathon, the world’s oldest and among the six World Marathon Majors.

WATCH | Sisay Lemma of Ethiopia celebrates after winning the Boston Marathon men’s division:

Sisay Lemma of Ethiopia claims 128th Boston Marathon title

Ethiopian runner Sisay Lemma ran the Boston Marathon winning time of 2:06.17, recording his first ever victory at the famous race Monday.

The race, held April 15, was Michelle’s second ever marathon and Kim’s third. 

As they were escorted from their accommodations by police to a coach bus, hotel staff lined the hallway to cheer them on before they were driven to the start line.

“I had tears in my eyes because I realized how much this race means to the city, how much that we’ve worked to get into that field and then to board a coach bus with some of the best athletes in the world,” said Kim.

“To think that we came from somewhere without street lights in the middle of northern Ontario is really cool,” Michelle added.

“This is one of those moments you’ll always remember for the rest of your life.”

Going the distance

The sisters have early memories of track meets and fun runs in Thunder Bay. Their first big road race was the city’s annual Ten Mile Road Race in 2018.

“It was such a special memory because we grew up watching that race, and then to have our parents watching, to have our family watching and friends in the Thunder Bay community just made it really a proud moment,” said Kim.

Two people with their arms around each other at the end of a running race.
Michelle and Kim Krezonoski, left to right, are seen at the finish of the Ten Mile Road Race in Thunder Bay, Ont., in 2018. It was their first big road race and it inspired them to pursue more long-distance running. (Gerianne Johnson)

After that, they worked their way up to half-marathons in graduate school and then started doing full marathons. The Krezonoskis say their parents have always supported them and their father is a key figure in Thunder Bay’s running community.

“They flew from Thunder Bay [to Boston] and walked over 12 miles [about 19 km] to go to the top of Heartbreak Hill, cheer us on for five seconds and then walk all the way back,” said Michelle.

Heartbreak Hill — a steep uphill portion of the race at mile 20, or about 32 km — is known as one of the hardest parts of the Boston Marathon. That’s where Kim says she lost some steam and fell behind her sister.

‘Find the joy in running’

During the race, the twins settled with a group of five or six others. They all passed around water cups and the sisters recall one racer who offered their cup to someone who dropped theirs.

“To feel that sportsmanship amongst complete strangers who were all competitors — but we want the best for each other. That’s always a special moment where kindness is out there and you feel it,” said Michelle.

The training was tough, with Michelle recovering from a partial Achilles tear. In January, they began the “marathon build” — her sister described it as “slowly stacking little bricks” and being strategic with their workouts.

Two people wearing athletic attire stand in front of elevator doors, smiling.
Kim and Michelle, left to right, at their hotel in Boston. The sisters say hotel staff lined the hallway and cheered them on as they were escorted by police to a coach bus that carried them to the start line. (Submitted by Kim Krezonoski)

The two wore matching bracelets they made with the word “patience” on them as a reminder to be kind to themselves on the long, daunting road ahead.

“I think the key to marathon running is to not focus all the time on running, but to really embrace the environment you’re in because that environment, the cheering, just being with other runners that you’re normally not running with — that’s the experience you come for,” said Michelle.

Now the twins have their sights set on the five other World Marathon Majors on the road to receiving the Six Star Medal.

Their advice to others, no matter the distance, is to work hard and dream big.

“It’s important to find the joy in running, and that’s the number one reason why you should run,” said Michelle. “Find the joy in the sport and it’ll carry you as long and as far as you want to go.”

Latest News

Cancer Horoscope Today, 24-May-2024: Discover what stars say about your career, finance and love

Cancer Horoscope Prediction Today, 24-May-2024: You may be in one of your more frivolous moods today, foresees Ganesha. Gossip,...

More Articles Like This