James V. had a birthday run at Battersby Field in Bellingham recently. Happy bday James! I don’t know where he came up with this, but in celebration, he proposed “the Beer mile.”
Racers have to drink four beers, one at the start of each lap. At the word “Go,” drinking begins. The biggest guy was the first one off and running, chugging his beer faster than gravity’s pull. Perhaps the trick is to poke a hole at the bottom side of the beer cans—hadn’t thought of that until now.
Now, I don’t drink. I wish I did sometimes, and this was one of those times. But I don’t. So, I opted for Vernor’s Ginger Ale instead, fixing on the close match of Vernor’s for Varner’s, and then there's that whole fake ale thing. Ginger ale may seem like a competitive advantage, but in the end, I did not improve my ultrasignup ranking with my unleaded effort. I was ready to retch with the best of them on Lap 4, just like everyone else.
Women ran and drank faster than men at this event, it seemed, though the first couple finishers were guys. I noticed on the fourth lap one gal wasn’t running straight.
The beers on Lap 1 go down quick—the drinking slowed down for many on the next three laps. Dan went with three beers of one type, and then a bell lap beer of another type. Strategy? Apparently, the King of Beers is good---I think that was James' fuel choice---but Chad went with the foreign beer-in-the-back-of-the-fridge plan. Bottle v. can. Lots of things to think about, if you want to get serious about this.
Candice and another guy kept the time. Thank you volunteers! There was an official’s timekeepers table, running cones, and everything. Maybe 15-20 competitors. There are all sorts of particulars about the beer—needs to be at least 5% alcohol, no wide mouth bottles, etc. There are other rules too, like if you puke, you have a penalty lap.
I sweated really weird afterwards. My pores were just dripping liquid. My eyeballs didn’t seem to line up straight too. Otherwise, recovery seems ok. Battersby Field was a worthy location. Near enough to the police station to flaunt the Law a bit. Weeds growing on the track. Not all tracks need to be oval, anyway.
I didn’t get to watch James finish. He was still nursing his bell lap beer, along with Brandon, when I had to go. He may or may not have been DFL, which as I left I thought is a cool way to handle it, getting to hang with your friends a bit longer. Still, I doubt this was a conscious strategy. Lucky for James and Brandon, there were no sweeps or cutoffs.
Next up, the 100/100. 100 beers, 100 miles, one week. Got this one from Peter. I’ve heard it can be done. Never stop challenging yourself.