The Cabot Team looking extra sharp in this picture that commemorates the event that brought them together in Cape Elizabeth, Maine.Disclosure: Cabot sponsored my participation in the TD Beach to Beacon 10K, along with travel and accomodations. I was not financially compensated for my time. Opinions are my own.
Just to eat well does not guarantee one’s health. Exercise and physical activity are compliments to a good diet and considered necessary regular habits. Taking it a step further, research demonstrates it’s far better to contribute to the common welfare of the community, than to think only of yourself. Food , fitness and living in harmony are all factors in the longevity equation. This lifestyle philosphy is embraced by the 1200 Cabot dairy farm families throughout New York & New England and it’s the reason the Cabot Fit team was born. This group of individuals is chosen by Cabot to join the dairy farmers in an effort to increase awareness about the importance of wellness through exercise, nutrition and giving back. You can imagine, I was head over heels when Cabot invited me to be part of their elite wellness team and participate in the TD Beach to Beacon 10 K Road Race .
If you’re a competitive runner, perhaps you’ve heard of the Beach to Beacon, founded by Olympic Marathon Gold Medalist Joan Benoit Samuelson. It’s Maine’s largest race with over 6000 participants, including many elite runners like Maine native, Ben True. The event takes place in Cabot’s neighborhood (the Norteast U.S.); it starts at Cresent Beach, in Maine and ends at Portland Head Light, the nation’ s first commissioned lighthouse. The runners aren’t the only winners in this race. Charity is at the core. This year’s beneficiary is the Good Shepherd Food Bank, Maine’s largest hunger relief organization.
My Cabot Fit trip began last Thursday, when I meet up in the Portland airport with several members along with Cabot Dietitian, Regan Jones (Cabot RD) pictured here.
Btw, Regan is the reason for these amazing photos today. Aside from being a social media rock star, Regan was also our set of wheels during the trip. I ‘m grateful for her ability to keep things light and fun and for helping us to hydrate and fuel correctly proir to the race with delicious foods like this
and of course you can’t go to Maine without having this
We stayed at a quaint bed and breakfast just steps from the beach, the Higgins Beach Inn. The front porch of the inn became the perfect place to come together (much like our kitchens at home) to share some downtime,
Then after a delicious breakfast of yogurt parfaits, we visited Pinelands Farm, where we were reminded of the dairy farmers’ commitment to their cows,
and their product. Strict quality control ensures freshness, purity and that great taste we all enjoy…
Saturday was race day and meant rising early, yet another day; we left the inn about 6:15 a.m. I am not a competitive runner. So when trying to recap a race, I don’t have much to compare it to. My last race was a virtual race! Hmm… how will I know what you need to know? I pondered this on Saturday, while standing in a crowd of runners from Maine and across the world.
I usually listen to music when I run (I wore headphones and an iPod trying to keep everything similar to the way I had trained for this event). That is, until the young woman standing next to me suggested, “listen to the race”. I unplugged.
That’s when the real music filled my ears; it was the crowd. They played music. They cheered. Suddendly I began to connect to this race in a special way. As we crossed the start line the cheering and music grew louder. I heard people shouting my name, or perhaps the other Diane who was running along side of me? Three times during the race DIANE was cheered on! I felt special, even if it wasn’t for me. (We did have first names on the front of our bibs.) Despite the enormous fan support, I felt I wasn’t running to my potential. My legs felt heavy at the start and continued to feel heavy throughout. The course did have some hills (which is very different from the flat terrain where I train). I wondered if I would make the goal I had set : run a sub 8 minute mile pace. I continued to move forward, kids splashed water on me as I passed by. I ran underneath a shower head with the spicket on, hoping to feel the power of a shower! The crowd was relentless with their support and encouragement. Once I entered Williams State Park, I knew the finish line was near. I sprinted in, and managed to meet my goal, with a time of 49:29 and 7 minute 58 second pace per mile.
The Cabot team all finished seriously sharp. We had a first time runner, an injured runner, and some setting PRs. It was a proud day. I think these smiles will tell you that they would all do it again. I know I would, in a heart beat.