Manitoba Marathon Does it Again!


Just wow!

The Manitoba Marathon is clearly the premier running event this side of Minneapolis.  Although I did not have the opportunity to run this year, I have run six and they just keep getting better.  I stood curb side in Wolseley at mile 11.5 and called out names as I could read them from the bibs.

And the names I couldn’t read were replaced with an endless chatter…

“Way to go Rocket Man”

“You’re rocking the course”

“You’ve got this”

“Smile if you peed a bit”

… and on and on.

But never once did I say the curse of all runners, the dreaded…

“You’re almost there”

Brrr, bad, never say that unless you can hear, smell, and see the finish line!

There are mostly smiles at this point, after all we’re 2 miles shy of the halfway point and the weather is gloriously cool.  There are a few grimaces from the first timers and one young woman appeared to be in distress. I cautioned her to hydrate and she managed a feeble smile.  I hope she makes it!

Mercifully, the fan support is growing, at least here in Wolseley. There was a time the fans would remain quiet, cheer like mad when their loved one crossed, and then pack up and leave.  There now appears to be block cheering parties taking shape.  There are kids entertaining the runners with cartwheels and funny signs while moms and dads cheer loudly and proudly for all runners. Keep it up Winnipeg!

I am proud of my community.  I am proud of The Manitoba Marathon.  Winnipeg is a world class city and The Manitoba Marathon, under the leadership of executive director, Rachel Munday, has risen to the occasion.

Just wow!


PS:  Don’t forget the little race that could on September 29, we may be small, but we have cake!


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Is the 5 km event the new black?

high 5

photo credit Blake Anderson

There was a time the 5 km event was seen as a fun little run, a literal jog in the park to work off last night’s pie and ice-cream or to warm up for more ‘serious’ endeavours.  Not so anymore; the popularity  of the 5 km distance is growing exponentially.

“Everyone thinks the marathon is the Holy Grail, when a lot of people should really be doing the 5K,” says Jason Karp, an exercise physiologist and running coach.

Blogger Christine Aschwanden  argues “Some people aren’t suited to long distances — their natural talents tend toward power and speed rather than endurance.And if you’re exercising for health and fitness, several studies suggest that moderate mileage, which is typical in a training plan for 5Ks, might provide a better way to get there”.

This race director adds with humility “… if you’re aging or if you’re injured, or if you’re injured and old (like me), if you’re overwhelmed with life and work and family, if you’re wanting to do something positive but are swimming in a choppy sea of self-deprecation and self-doubt, and if you pine for the glory days, if you pine for success and gratitude, if you pine for happiness and well-being, the 5 km distance might be just for you”.

Why not give it a try?

Ted’s Run for Literacy first added the 5 km event to their race roster in 2015. Forty-seven registered and their times ranged from 17:55 to 54:07. In 2018 ninety-eight registered and the times ranged from 20:43 and 56:14.  That’s a 100% increase in registrants in three years. Indeed, the new black.

We have always considered our 10 km event to be our premiere event when, in fact, the numbers suggest a shift to the 5 km event.

In 2016, 2017, and 2018 our race crew scrambled to fill the demand for the 5 km event.  You need to understand we pre-chip our bibs at a cost of about $3.00 each, so it’s important we estimate judiciously. We have under-estimated the demand for two consecutive years and sadly, we’ve had to decline some registrants due to a sell-out. This hurts us financially and leaves the runner feeling bummed.

In preparation for another sell out, Ted’s Run for Literacy will chip 150 5 km bibs and 150 10 km bibs. Don’t leave us hanging, we pay $3 for unused bibs so please spread the word and click, click, click here to register.

The little race that could…


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An Open Letter to Gina Tranquada

Dear Gina,

Just a quick note to congratulate you on your third place finish at the 2019 Winnipeg Police Half Marathon. You are an inspiration to our community and you make us so proud! One hour, thirty-one minutes, and one second is an outstanding time, but (there’s always a ‘but’) I want to draw your attention to another running milestone you achieved way back in 2012.

As I recall it was a rainy day, or was it snowy? There could have been a windchill or at the very least, sleet. I know for sure it wasn’t sunny or warm because our race is not known for balmy conditions, but (see, there’s another one) I digress.

This was the year you walked away $150 richer from Ted’s Run for Literacy for the fastest course record set by a female. Just so you know, this record still stands today despite some serious challenges from some badass female runners who would love to steal this record. The male fastest course time has been beat at least three times and is currently owned by Paul Carr (34:16:90).

Gina, do you remember your time? Are you curious? Do you think you can beat your own record? Are there any badass ladies with a chip on their shoulder (or bib, get it?  chip… bib… never mind, bad runner’s pun) out there who think they are a contender for a new record?

Seriously Gina, we would love to have you back on our course. You are a star VIP in our eyes and we would give you your own personal seat next to the propane heater, exclusive parking, and we will serve you cake on your very own souvenir paper plate.

Hope to hear from you soon Gina.

It’s a good day to be alive,

The TRL Race Crew

PS… to check Gina’s time go to and click “results”… I could tell you but I’m trying to drive some traffic our way :).

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We’re not flush, but we aren’t cheap either.  Last year Ted’s Run for Literacy donated $7077 to two very deserving organizations that align directly with our Mission Statement.  We donated $4000 to our long term charity partner, Can U and another $3077 to Inner City Missions, Learn and Play.

When you register for The Little Race That Could, know that 100% of the registration fee directly supports improving literacy within inner city neighbourhoods; not one penny (what’s a penny again?) is used for race administration.

The cost of hosting our event is covered entirely by our wonderful sponsors. Your registration fees and donations are immediately put to work making our city a better place for children, a better place to live.

You should feel good about that.. we sure do!

As always, it’s a good day to be alive.


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Mark your calendars!

Our race committee is gearing up for our 9th annual Ted’s Run for Literacy on September 29, 2019. We are pleased to announce that we now have a school outreach coordinator, Ryan Warkentin. Ryan’s sole job is to expand on the number of school teams registering for TRL (no pressure Ryan). Back by popular demand are the unique, hand made medals designed and made by local artist, Natalie Ferguson. And yes, don’t worry, there will be heaps of Tara Bjornson’s famous cake!

Stay tuned for more announcements.

We are indeed the little race that could.


Race Director

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Our 5 km event has sold out, twice!  We chipped 70 bibs for the 5 km event and sold out on Thursday morning.  We located another 38 bibs and sold these out in a couple of hours.  We have capped the 5 km event at 108 participants.

Several 10 km bibs remain but we expect these too will be sold out.

Kit pick up is on Saturday, September 22 between 10:00AM and 2:00 PM at the Kenaston Running room.

It’s a good day to be alive,


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2018 Medal Reveal

Handmade and one of a kind, these incredible medals were made by Natalie Ferguson, outreach coordinator at Art City. Exclusive to Ted’s Run for Literacy 2018.

Register to get yours:

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Top 10 reasons to be a Ted’s Run for Literacy Runner/Volunteer

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10)That warm feeling it brings in your heart in supporting CanU!
9)Awesome swag!
8)Be a part of a team with a “specific set of skills.”
7) Be a part of the only race that connects two beautiful city parks!
6) Have a legitimate reason to “tell someone where to go.”
5) Anticipate what outfit David Fielder is going to wear this year…..
4) The only road race Chuck Norris would start at 10:00am and finish at 9:55am.
3) It won’t rain this year……promise (fingers crossed).
2) Honour Jo by kicking cancer’s butt.
1) All of the above.

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Important PSA Coming…

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Ted’s Run for Literacy is proud to bring you an important PSA this week. Stay tuned!

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TRL Coffee Table – Tom Malone, Course Director and Resident Hugger

TRL: What are you reading?
TM: The Power of Now by Eckhart Toll – for the second time.

TRL: What’s it about?
TM: To sum it up, it walks one through a journey of enlightenment to live in the present. The past is gone and the future is largely out of our control, and living in the present is where we can truly appreciate all the love and beauty of life that is all around us at this very moment.

TRL: What have you taken away from the book?
TM: It taught me to recognize my ego and by recognizing its insanity, to have a much more enjoyable and fulfilling life. My enjoyment of hugging is a direct byproduct of Eckhart Tolle’s teachings.

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