Today we are spotlighting Josh and Tanis’ recent running engagement at the Run Waterloo’s Re-fridgee Eighter 8mile race. Both graduates of the University of Windsor with degrees in a Bachelor of Human Kinetics Honours Movement Science (Kinesiology degrees), and Bachelor of Education.
Josh and Tanis started dating in 2013 when competing for the Windsor Lancers cross country and track & field teams. Josh is originally from Paris, ON and competed for Brantford Track and Field club through highschool. His blog is joshbolts.wordpress.com . Since graduating in 2014, Josh has been working as a Kinesiologist at Advanced Therapies Clinic in Brantford specializing in Active Release Techniques and hands on therapy.
Tanis is from Oshawa, ON and competed for the Durham Dragons Track and Field team throughout highschool which developed my passion and love for running. Since then, Tanis has been working in the Fitness Industry using my Kinesiology degree as a Personal Trainer. Her blog is tanissmith.com.
Tanis’ Reflection of the Re-fridgee Eighter 8 mile race:
Josh had it planned for a few weeks now, originally he thought the race was February 7th so as far as I knew we were going to be running that day when we realized that wasn’t the right date he had to push it back a few weeks, leaving his family and friends who knew about the proposal very anxious.
We signed up for the race like we would any other. Josh and I are both sponsored by Skechers Performance Division Canada and planned on using this race to test our fitness for our upcoming season.
Our Grand River Endurance teammates came down for the big day. I thought Mike Thornton was just coming to watch and that Heather Colunsanno was racing because she wanted to. Turns out they knew! Josh’s brother is a photographer and I thought he was coming to take running photos of us but he joined us with his girlfriend Meagan Bains to capture the moment.
The race went off like any other, and Josh and I both were in the 8 miler. As I ran towards the finish line, I had been in the first place female position running solo for the last 10km of the race after I turned off the 8km course to do the second loop for the 8miler. I came across the finish line in first and walked towards my teammates and friends as I would any other day. Before I knew it, Mike was turning me around to see Josh down on one knee. He asked will you marry me and I was so surprised I started laughing. I said yes! and we had the infamous exchange of hugs and kisses that has went viral on our social media sites, as of right now Josh’s post has over 200 likes! I asked him after I accepted how his race went, and he won! I don’t think he was very concerned with that result though! He told me during the race he just kept thinking get back so he could have enough time to get everything ready at the finish. We did our cool down as we would any other day and took endless pictures with friends and family. My dad was there to watch the race and didn’t know what was happening until minutes before, he was very excited to be a part of it. When we went up to accept our race awards the announcer told everyone that Josh was the Proposer of the day and I was the Prosposee. Our teammates have dubbed it the “GRAND RIVER ENGAGEMENT” play on words of GrandRiverEndurance
In terms of the race, I ran the 8miles in 49:02 which placed me first overall female which ranks me 49th fastest time run on the course ever (male and female) and 2nd fastest female ever behind Krista Duchene. This was the first time I did this race.
Josh set the course record for the 8 mile course in a time of 41:07. He had only run the 8km course before in 2011.
More About the Couple:
When we graduated in 2014 we both knew we wanted to make a splash on the road racing circuit. I had already been racing on the roads with my first half-marathon at Road2Hope Half in fall of 2012 in a time of 1:25:47. Josh had done many road races in the summers during high school and university only 5 and 10k’s though.
Josh is our coach, he started Grand River Endurance running club because he found there were very few clubs who focused on post-collegiate running and road racing with pursuit of excellence as the focus. He does all my workouts and everything for me, I am our strength and conditioning coach making sure the two of us are staying injury free and strong.
It is our dream to both represent team Canada one day. We would like to qualify for a world or pan am team. This is what drives our training day in and day out. We push each other every day and encourage each other to go for greatness. The idea is building up to the marathon in the next few years. Josh and I both raced Scotiabank Toronto Half Marathon 2015 he pb’d in a time of 1:09:12 finishing 5 place overall. I placed 6th female overall in a pb of 1:20:41 (prev pbs RunAjax half 2015 1:21:45/Niagara International 2014 1:22).
We wish nothing but a lifetime of happiness to the couple! Congratulations Josh and Tanis!