young happy women running in the cold morning with sunshine after sunrise
Tessa Stoltenburg

“I have felt first-hand the benefits that beef can provide to a runner, and that is what has led me to be a passionate beef advocate."

Elite Marathoner Understands the Benefits from Beef  

Tessa Stoltenburg’s running story began on a Black Angus cattle ranch in rural Watertown, SD where beef was a staple in everyday life. Utilizing beef as a powerful performance protein followed Stoltenburg as her parents continued to stress the importance of beef in the diet even after leaving the family ranch. “My parents are always sure to check in and make sure my freezer is fully supplied,” states Stoltenburg. “My dad is even more sure to call after my long runs or high intensity training weeks to check in to hear the word “beef” somewhere in my weekly meal plan.” 

As a runner, Stoltenburg understands the importance of beef in her training and recovery. “I have felt first-hand the benefits that beef can provide to a runner, and that is what has led me to be a passionate beef advocate. I am firm in the fact that I eat and train, not diet and exercise. It is important that I properly fuel my body and provide the nutrients that it is deserving of.” 

Stoltenburg incorporates beef as a lean protein into her evening meal multiple times per week due to the nutritional benefits found in zinc, iron, and B-vitamins. “When I am training 80-90 miles per week it is essential that I consume foods that will enhance my recovery and fuel me for the next workout,” states Stoltenburg.   

As an elite marathoner, Stoltenburg has learned a lot though educating herself on new recipes and techniques in the kitchen to stay focused on nutrition. Since she did not always have a strong understanding of this she aims to help others reap the benefits. “I am an advocate in hopes to share my story and in turn inspire other to utilize beef as a protein in their diet.”   

Stoltenburg is eager to share her background and passion about ranching and her current journey as a marathon runner including the importance of nutrition through Team Beef. “Many of us are persistent in doing the training, but it really comes down to the supplemental things such as our sleep and proper nutrition that play an even larger role. A runner can put all of the miles in, but if they do not intake the proper nutrients, it can lead to fatigue and a lack in muscle recovery. Beef is a well-composed, lean protein option and the benefits for runners are numerous. If I taught myself in less than one year how to properly cook and eat from home 95% of the time, you can too!”   

Stoltenburg looks forward to connecting with the South Dakota Beef Industry Council and other runners that are utilizing beef as part of their training program. “I always find it amazing that running can bring so many people together, and I find it even more amazing that beef can too!” Stoltenburg plans to run the Brookings, S.D Half Marathon and Fargo Half Marathon, both in May as well as the Sioux Falls Half Marathon on September 8, 2019.