Thursday, January 1, 2009

Beer Mile Madness

Me and DTM

MJ, HPP & Neily warming up pre-race

DTM in action

Team photo

HPP post 6-pack

Everyone should run a Beer Mile at least once in their life. Thank the stars my time was not last Sunday in Encinitas. I did pony up and run one leg on a relay team, but I weaseled my way out of the entire 4 beers & 4 laps.

Here’s the deal: a group of mature, rational adults gets together in an undisclosed location on a high school track to run a one-mile race. The kicker is that prior to each lap of the mile, the runner must fully consume one 12-oz can of beer. And it’s bad beer at that.

Among our group of revelers, the pressure was intense to race. DTM is one of the most talented beer-drinking pros around, and he wagered MJ an all-you-can-eat sushi dinner that he would beat her across the line. Given that his beer guzzling skill rivals her running speed, he may well have had a chance, if only she had toed the line. But MJ, not much of a drinker, opted for a cheerleading role on the sidelines and a hefty dinner tab. DTM and HPP both did us proud by finishing the entire race. HPP even managed a top-five finish, as well as winning some sort of twisted bonus points for consuming an additional beer both before and after running his mile. But the ultimate glory went to DTM, who took home the award for “Best Looker” with his glorious wig and track suit. Our pal Neily and I opted for relay teams, and thus only had to run one lap – and chug one beer – apiece. My teammates were Bob and Heidi Babbitt and Kristin Mayer, and Bob was surely a runner-up in the costume contest. Kristin and I are running marathons next month (more on this twist in my training later), so we had both completed our hardest and longest runs that morning. With the deep fatigue in my legs, I was honestly more nervous about making it around the track than finishing my beer. I did in fact chug down a Pabst Blue Ribbon with lightning-like speed, and then cruised a fairly easy lap. The strategy of drink fast, run slow served me well, as I never once experienced the gut-churning that I had been warned to expect. Of course, Neily did blow past me about halfway around the track, so the victory is hers in the relay competition. Someday she and I will have to square off as individual racers, as I’m confident that with enough training I could give her a run (or chug) for the money!

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