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Beer Mile – Inaugural Run

October 14, 2010 Fitness, Friends, Fun No Comments

We are halfway through October.

The weekend is nigh.

I dare say this calls for some beer drinking! Bring on the Octoberfest! If you don’t have your weekend plans sorted out, let this post be an inspiration to you.

The same weekend we participated in the Oyster Race, we were introduced to another kind of “adventure race:” The Beer Mile. I am actually a little embarrassed that I had not heard of the Beer Mile before then (but feel somewhat better that so many of my in-the-know-about-these-kinds-of-things friends hadn’t either). Here’s how it works:

1. Drink one 12-ounce beer (alcohol content must be higher than 5% — no Michelob Ultras allowed!) as fast as possible.

2. Run one-quarter mile as fast as possible.
Repeat steps 1 and 2 three times, totaling 4 beers and one mile.
ALSO: If you puke, you must run a penalty lap.

This doesn’t sound that hard, right? I mean, how hard is it to drink four beers and run a mile? That was precisely the smack I was talking when I ardently agreed we should do this. I completed a Half Ironman triathlon in July! I had just completed what is dubbed as “the Amazing Race in one day” in San Francisco, covering 35 miles and at least four beers. BRING IT ON!

And then the guys started pulling up the records from BeerMile.com. The record is 5:09. Areyoufuckingkiddingme?! My fastest all-out mile is probably somewhere around 6 minutes (if I allow myself to be somewhat dishonest) and that does not include drinking four beers! But I knew I wasn’t going for the world record. I just needed to compete against my friends and not puke.

All of this banter was done at a party on Saturday night. “Sure! We should do this! It would be fun! How hard can it be?” People are in various stages of having kids. Schedules are hard to coordinate. We don’t live within 2 miles of each other anymore.  I assumed it would be something we’d talk about at every party and never do — and that was fine with me!

Greg and I got up on Sunday morning and prepared for a long (45 miles) and hilly (5000 ft of elevation gain) bike ride when our phones buzzed with a text message from Jon: “The beer mile is on.” I had three hours of bike riding to mentally prepare and hopefully leave enough in my legs to pull this off. A girl’s gotta have a strategy, right?

VENUE: We chose Bob’s house as the race venue. He lives on a block that just so happens to be exactly one-quarter mile around. Perfect!

BEER: Greg and I had a 12-pack of Coors Original down in the basement that we quickly put on ice. I’m certain this was left over from a rafting trip and the born-on date was during the first Bush administration. Waste not, want not!

TIMEKEEPING: Official timekeeping was provided by our pregnant friend (and Jon’s wife) Tara.

PHOTOGRAPHY: Race photos were provided by Bob.

COMPETITORS: Mike, Jon, and Greg were competing in the Men’s Division. Tiffany, Monique, and I were competing in the Women’s division. (note: Monique does not drink alcohol, but we forced invited her to join us drinking sparkling water instead)

Here we go!

The first few gulps went down easily enough…

And it got considerably harder from there. The guys are done with Round 1. Only the girls left “chugging.”

The girls finished our beers and were running when the guys came back in for Round 2. Jon is ahead of the game and already finishing his second lap.

A note about the running. This part was considerably easier for me than the beer drinking. The amusing part was that you spent the entire quarter-mile belching and hearing the other competitors doing the same. It was the only way to get through it to make room for the next beer!

We met in the transition area again. We are all on our second beer, except Jon – he’s on his third.

Yes. We all got lapped by Jon. Is it a coincidence that he was the one behind this idea??

Also – you know how they say animals (admittedly, I think it’s usually cats) can tell when people are sick and/or dying? Notice in the below photo how Argus is focused on me. And the look on my face. Beer #2 is not going well for me.

In fact, I got down to the last two gulps of Beer #2 and thought, “I’ll just take two big swallows and it will be over.”

Well, it almost was over because my gag reflex kicked in and I started to puke. I actually puked that second-to-last gulp up and then had to swallow it. And then drink the last gulp. And then run a quarter-mile. And then do the whole thing over again. Two more times. BUT I DID NOT HAVE TO RUN A PENALTY LAP!

At this point, I gave Tara a dirty look and said, “I wish I was pregnant!” Me, the one who is childless by choice, would rather be pregnant than “forced” to drink four beers and run a mile. Oh the irony! (Also, this feeling wore off within the ~15 minutes this whole thing took.)

Two beers down:

There’s a lot of belching in beer chugging.

Two more rounds of this misery… Jon is the clear winner!

All the guys had finished and Tiffany was the winner in the Women’s Division. She waited for me and Monique to come around the bend. It was anyone’s race!

I finished my last beer before Monique had finished her last sparkling water. It actually made all of us feel better that Monique was having just as much trouble choking down her water as we were the beer. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE CARBONATION, PEOPLE. I knew Tiffany had won, and figured it would be an easy Second Place for me.

But then I heard Monique quickly approaching from behind. She’s a fast runner!

“NNNNnnnnnOOOOOOOooooo!” I yelled, as if in slow motion, trying to make my brain tell my legs to run faster. I wasn’t going to be beaten after the near-puke incident during Round 2!

With Monique right on my heels, I snagged the Second Place finish. Whew! With a belly full of beer and a buzzing head, I was glad it was over!

The Men’s standings:

And the Women’s:

Here are the raw results from Tara’s tabulations:

And the actual splits with averages (thanks Greg!):

Jon Greg Mike Tiff Molly Monique
Run Time Total 05:42.9 05:41.8 07:44.6 07:18.5 06:38.4 06:13.9
Avg per Quarter Mile 01:25.7 01:25.4 01:56.2 01:49.6 01:39.6 01:33.5
Beer Time Total 01:57.3 04:54.3 04:15.6 05:23.3 07:10.8 07:38.3
Avg per Beer 00:29.3 01:13.6 01:03.9 01:20.8 01:47.7 01:54.6
Total 07:40.2 10:36.1 12:00.2 12:41.8 13:49.2 13:52.2

Of note: Mike chugged that first beer in 12.3 seconds, but averaged 1:03 overall. Jon’s first beer went down in 18.8 seconds and his overall average was only 29.9. AMAZING! The winnings come in the ability to chug beer. Greg beat Jon by a narrow margin on the running, but couldn’t compete on the beer guzzling. In fact, he came in nearly 3 minutes after Jon did!

Fortunately or unfortunately, I am pretty sure this is not the last time we run the Beer Mile. There is talk of doing it every time the seasons change (since we did it near the Fall Equinox the first time). I’ve got my work cut out for me between now and then!

Have you heard of the Beer Mile? Have you done it?? Share your experience!

Better yet, wanna join us next time??

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