Twin sisters reunite to run in Tartan Twosome marathon

Published in: Weekly News
Written by: Joanne Oostveen
Photo by: Gail Kanasevich

From the time they took their first steps together in Louisville, Kentucky to their undergraduate years at the University of Victoria , Danielle and Lisa Gardner have always been on the run.

“We have always run together,” said Danielle, who along with her twin sister Lisa is participating in the Tartan Twosome at Maritime Race Weekend next month. “Starting out in track and field and cross country in elementary and high school and throughout our years at the University of Victoria during our occasional get fit kicks, running was part of our lives.”

But it wasn’t a serious part of their lives until another Gardner sister, Natalie, made a New Year’s resolution to run in the Royal Victoria Half Marathon in 2009.

“Of course we couldn’t let her do it alone, so myself, Danielle, and our other sister, Marie-Claire started to train with her,” said Lisa.

After the Royal Victoria Half Marathon the twins started to run together, regularly.

“We started out with slow , short runs and worked on increasing both our pace and our distances,” said Danielle.

And, Lisa says, running with a group is an incredible motivator, especially when your running group is comprised of your sisters.

“You are more likely to turn up for your running dates that way,” she said.

The 31-year-old twins eventually found themselves on opposite ends of the country. Lisa moved to Dieppe in January while Danielle remained in B.C., until Aug. 3 when she moved to Halifax.

Not being able to train together for those few months didn’t really prevent them from supporting one another, though.

“It is tough to get home from work and force yourself to go for your run, but we supported one another apart through email,” said Danielle.

And then the best chance of a running reunion on the East Coast presented itself to Lisa and Danielle. This opportunity is called the Maritime Race Weekend.

“We were excited to find out about this running weekend, as it has provided us both with the opportunity to continue our running with a specific goal in mind,” said Danielle. “As well as offering us the chance of a twin’s running reunion on the East Coast.”

In an amazing coincidence Danielle and Lisa were the very last two entrants for the Tartan Twosome. They are running in the 5K on the Friday, Sept. 14 and in the half marathon on Saturday, Sept. 15.

This twins reunion will mark Danielle and Lisa’s 11th half marathon.