by Lindsay Garrett
I guess you could say it was a coincidence. About the time I decided to start running last summer, I was also asked to write a story about the Texas Beef Running Team, sponsored by the Texas Beef Council. Talk about an impressive program full of passionate team members. I didn’t plan to continue running, once the summer ended, but I, like many in the state, have been become passionate about the Beef Team. I not only continued to run, but decided to sign up for races.
After running my first race with the team in February, I know why it has proved so successful. The team, formed in 2008, boasts over 550 members. While the people are great and the opportunities on the team are wonderful, the beef promotion is what is phenomenal. I ran in the Austin Livestrong Marathon with over 20,000 others. The 26.2 mile course is lined with community members, business owners, volunteer organizations, family and friends all cheering for us participants, whether they know us or not. Since my new fans did not know my name, they would just constantly yell to my running partner (another Texas Beef Running Team member) and I, “Go Beef”, “Hey Beef”, “Where’s the Beef?” and so on as our shirts boldly say “Beef”.
The promotion of beef along the course was great and came at a pretty low cost. All we had to do was show up and run in our shirts provided by the Texas Beef Council. We were able to reach so many people that day and also make the other runners crave a juicy steak after they crossed the finish line.
One man from New Hampshire was absolutely obsessed with the idea of being sponsored by beef. He told me about a 50k (31 miles) race he was in and after the first half he bowed out and grabbed a burger at a stand where he had quit. After eating his beef, he said he felt great and went back to finish the last 15.5 miles. He said he always wanted to wear a shirt saying, “powered by the double bacon cheeseburger.”
The Texas Beef Running Team has members sporting their beef shirts at races just about every weekend. The team is a community of runners, triathletes, and health enthusiasts, who recognize the nutritional benefits of lean beef and the vital role this high-quality protein plays in their training. Many on the team train at high intensity levels, qualify for the Boston marathon, win awards like “one of ten for the fittest in Austin”, and the team even has a pro-athlete on the team.
While being on the team has many exciting opportunities the members are ultimately there to promote the nutritious beef product to those in the running community. One team member said the best part of his race was being told by the Chic-Fil-A team member that all she wanted was some beef at the finish line. So rest assure Texas cattlemen, your check-off dollars are being well spent with the Texas Beef Running Team.
If you would like to join the team or volunteer to be part of the beef cheering crowd, visit txbeefteam.org