Fun runs emphasize importance of beef

Saturday, June 4, 2011 | 8:03 p.m. CDT; updated 7:37 p.m. CDT, Thursday, June 9, 2011

COLUMBIA — Run a mile, get fajitas.

That is, after you jump over hay bales, keep your balance while running through mud pits and answer educational beef trivia along the way.

About the games

Every year, the Show-Me State Games and Missouri State Senior Games bring athletes of all ages to Columbia for three weekends of Olympic-style competition throughout the summer.

The purpose of the games is to promote health, fitness, family and fun for all Missourians, said Show-Me State Games media and marketing coordinator Emily Lorenz.

From June 10 to 12, the Missouri State Senior Games will be held for athletes 50 years of age and older. The purpose of the Senior Games is to promote a social, competitive, athletic and recreational activity for adults, according to the Show-Me State Games website. Sports include basketball, soccer, tennis, shuffleboard, a road race and more.

Younger athletes can also compete in events that, but the majority of events will be held during the last two weekends in July.

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A new addition to the Show-Me State Games this year are the four Missouri Beef Industry Council Fun Runs held throughout Missouri this summer. The last of four runs will be held June 11 at the MU Beef Research and Teaching Farm. The first of three weekends of the Show-Me State Games and the Missouri State Senior Games will be held June 10 to 12 in Columbia. The games will continue during the last two weekends in July.

The course challenges participants as they run through the farm and rewards them afterward with steak fajitas, said Kaity Kerwin, director of communications at the Missouri Beef Industry Council.

Why beef?

The council partnered with the Show-Me State Games to promote the importance of lean beef as part of a healthy diet.

"We see this as a perfect fit," Kerwin said. "Lean beef is important in a healthy lifestyle to refuel the body to keep going through the day for your everyday finish line."

Emily Lorenz, Show-Me State Games media and marketing coordinator, agrees that partnering with the council is a natural fit for the games to promote healthy eating and fitness.

For those interested in exercising by jumping over haystacks and getting muddy, the family fun run will begin at 10 a.m. June 11 and a 5K will follow at 11 .

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