The bride wore white, but the groom wore his marathon finisher’s medal. And the entire wedding party showed up in runners.

Married 25 years this August, a city couple renewed their marriage vows at a ceremony after running yesterday’s marathon at the Ottawa Race Weekend.

Isabel Cruz and Flavio Caracas said their “I dos” — again — in front of family, friends and fellow runners beneath a tent at city hall yesterday, but not before running 42.2 kilometres with their “wedding party” and about 4,000 others.


The couple, who started running four years ago, finished their fourth marathon — and second Ottawa Race Weekend marathon — with a time of four hours, 21 minutes. They crossed the finish line holding hands.

Although there were tough stretches, running with her husband made it easier, said Cruz, who likened marriage to a marathon.

“You have uphills and downhills,” she said.

“We’ve very proud of them,” said bridesmaid Donna Davis. “They’re such a great couple.”

“Marriage, like a marathon, is an extreme test of endurance,” said Caroline Elson, a lay chaplain with the Unitarian church and the couple’s yoga instructor. “We get out of a marriage, or a marathon, what you put into it. But unlike a marathon, a marriage takes two.”

The couple raised $3,000 for the Ottawa Hospital Foundation, said foundation spokeswoman Ingrid Gingras.

“This is really cute,” Gingras said of the ceremony, “a great example of love after 25 years.”

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