Sole Sisters

“Hey sister, go sister…Voulez-vous courir avec moi (ce soir)?…” Adapted from Labelle’s “Lady Marmalade”, Copyright 1974.

A Wellness Decision

Four years ago, Carrie Howell started trail running.

Carrie Howell & Jo Holmes. Photo credit: Erick Oland
Carrie Howell & Jo Holmes. Photo credit: Erick Oland

“It was a wellness decision,” says Howell. “I had low energy. I was carrying extra weight. I was unhappy with my direction in life. Plus, my dad had just suffered a heart attack.”

Howell dreamed what seemed like an impossible dream: run the Manitoba Half Marathon in honour of her dad.
“I fought to find the discipline to run every day, and train. I thought of my dad. His recovery and rehabilitation.”

Sister Act

Howell found her strength. She ran the half marathon after four months of training. Her thoughts turned to her sister Jo Holmes, experiencing her own struggles.

“I was at one of the lowest points of my life,” acknowledges Holmes. “Recently unemployed. Living with a guy who’d been laid off twice in the last year. Unmotivated and uninspired.”

One night, Howell picked up her sister for a surprise outing. “I thought we were going for a pint,” says Holmes. “Instead, Carrie drove me to the Running Room and bought me running shoes.”

“if I can do it, so can you,” Howell told her sister. “Get off your ass and run with me.”

Happier Trails

“There were tears, false starts, and lots of swearing,” says Holmes, “that gave way to laughter, sore muscles, and celebratory swearing.”

In 2014, Howell formed a community of trail runner with three goals:

1) Support each other
2) Do your best
3) Crawling is Acceptable, Falling is Acceptable, Puking is Acceptable, Crying is Acceptable, Blood is Acceptable, Pain is Acceptable, Quitting IS NOT

Team Turtle of Trail Run Manitoba was born, with Holmes as a founding member.

Howell and Holmes have run the Manitoba Half Marathon for three years now, and are proud Trail Run Manitoba members and volunteers.

With each training session, each mile, each trail, each race, they’ve gained in health and happiness.

“We’ve fallen in love with the running community” say the sisters.

A bit more literally for Holmes. “I met the love of my life through running. We got engaged just after my 40th birthday. What a way to celebrate.”

Sole sisters indeed.


9 thoughts on “Sole Sisters

  1. Very Cool story. In my opinion, it speaks to community. We all need and want support, especially when the road ahead is a little bumpy. But heck no…quitting is not an option.

    It kinda reads that you’re the commentator. Very cool ***


  2. Fantastic story. Almost, almost makes me want to take up running with the group. Too many aches and pains made me quit. I’m a quitter!

    Your story is inspiring with a touch of sisterly bonding.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much! Jo and Carrie are amazing ladies. I could never be as hard-core as them, but they did inspire me to get moving. Registered massage therapist has helped with the aches & pains 😉


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