Celebrating Each Other at the Calgary Marathon
If you were celebrating your 20th wedding anniversary, what would you do? Well, if you’re Megan and Rich MacDonald, you’d pull out the handcuffs and start running. Over-the-top romantic, right? Actually, it is.
On Sunday, May 28th, 2023 Megan and Rich ran an intimate race with thousands of others at the Calgary Marathon but, their experience was especially unique. The couple was handcuffed. As they ran the 42.2 km event in 3:18:38 they celebrated their relationship, brought awareness to mitochondrial health and disease, raised over $10,000 for MitoCanada, and smashed another Guinness World Record beating the previous Guinness World Record for the fastest marathon by a mixed couple handcuffed together by 25 minutes (fun fact Megan and Rich already have five GWRs between them, now six)!
“If Rich and I are going to run handcuffed together for 42.2 kms, we want to ensure we gain as much benefit for MitoCanada as we possibly can,” says Megan. The MacDonald’s have supported MitoCanada since its inception, over 10 years ago. Their dedication to the charity began when the life of their friend’s son, Evan, was changed forever because of the disease.
After a short illness, Evan’s mitochondria could no longer produce the energy he needed for his muscles and organs to function properly.
“Despite devastating circumstances and having to face significant challenges every day,” Rich states compassionately, “Sarah and Blaine Penny inspire us with their strength, commitment to the community, support for others, and their keenness to do extraordinary events to raise money for the charity they co-founded!”
In addition to supporting MitoCanada, the MacDonald’s are also helping to make the Calgary Marathon greener. They are the Sustainability Partner of the 2023 Calgary Marathon through their company, Fluid Projects Consulting. Fluid is passionate about healthy lifestyles and the importance of movement to foster physical, mental, and emotional well- being. The company also promotes strategies to help reduce waste and harm to the environment. This includes activities at the big event.
“We support each other but also challenge and push each other be better people,” says Megan.
The MitoCommunity recognizes this couple as amazing people – on so many levels. They have supported MitoCanada tirelessly throughout the years as volunteers and advocates. They are passionate about meeting their personal goals and helping MitoCanada realize its vision of creating a world where all lives are energized by healthy mitochondria.
- Megan and Rich were each a part of the MitoCanada Men’s and Women’s teams who broke the GWR for the furthest distance run on a treadmill in 24hrs.
- Megan was a member of the MitoCanada team of ten women linked together who broke the GWR for the fastest female linked marathon while running the Calgary Marathon.
- Rich was a member of the MitoCanada team that ran the Calgary Marathon in under three hours while pushing Evan Penny in his wheelchair.
- Rich was a part of the MitoCanada team that secured the GWR for the most people to finish a marathon while linked together. He says being a member of the 112-person team tied together with surgical tubing was the most fun he has ever had while running and that getting everyone across the finish line, without having a single person dropping out, was an amazing example of team work and human perseverance.