Wow, what a great weekend at Grandma’s Marathon in Duluth! This turned out to be a truly memorable time for all of us. Brett, Adam and I ran the 5K Friday evening. We were nervous and a big crowd and warm weather, held us back a bit, so we didn’t have any record breaking times, but we still ran good strong races. My two favorite memories were lining up at the starting line with my sons and coming around the last turn and having the Pork Power team cheer me on. Monica, Maddie and Teresa will tell you more about their ½ Marathon run and Dale will tell you about his marathon, but let me be the first to say I’m proud of them all.

Another highlight of the weekend was working in the pork booth and promoting pork. These runners and athletes were a new audience to us and the response was great. People really love the taste of pork and were asking how it was prepared and what type of seasoning was used. Just remember, don’t overcook pork! Use a meat thermometer and take it off the grill before it reaches 160 degrees and let it rest a bit under some tin foil. It will continue to cook and you’ll have moist delicious pork.

So much of our blog has been about running and pork, but it has also been about making new friends. As Brandon and Monica, Joe and Teresa and Dale and I along with all our kids hung out together this weekend, new friendships were forged. It took the kids a little while to get over their shyness, but Saturday afternoon we must have spent about 45 minutes on the shores of Lake Superior just hanging out. The kids were skipping rocks and wadding in the water. When we weren’t running or working in the pork booth, the kids wanted to swim together in the pool. I thought about how as farm families, we must share similar values because we all fit in so well together.

This blog started because of the MN Pork Board being a sponsor of Grandma’s Marathon and our opportunity to share our experiences as parents and pork producers and our interests in exercise and nutrition. While the races are over and we close one chapter, we’ve discussed continuing our Pork Power blog so that you can see how we balance work, exercise, kid’s activities and producing food for others. Life is challenging, but it’s also fun.

I don’t want to get to the end of my life and find that I lived just the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well.

– Diane Ackerman