I wouldn’t be on a 685-day streak of running and drinking craft beer if I didn’t enjoy it. But recently I discovered what’s more rewarding than running and drinking every day.
Running and drinking multiple times a day.
This experiment started by accident, and I don’t think it’s as extreme as it sounds. It began when I was in Boston for a conference and used running as a means of transportation as well as for exercise and stress management. And of course, you also drink more at conferences.
I did my regular running on my own, then went out for a few more miles after my work day to meet up with a running group, have a few beers together, take a running detour to visit a historic landmark, then run back to my hotel and shower and meet up with other conference attendees for beers.
Before I knew it, all my individual running added up to a 15- or 17-mile day and eventually a 72-mile week, the most mileage I’ve ever recorded in a single week. Maybe it’s not all at once, but a recent New York Times article pointed out how multiple bouts of excise broken up throughout the day — even as little as 10 minutes — have great benefits.
When I got back home I continued this multiple workout routine. I was used to biking to and from work with a lunchtime run sandwiched in between. Now I added a nighttime run with my wife, aka The Beer Mama, who has ramped up her running and is now on Day 19 of her own streak.
My normal routine now entails biking, running, biking, having a few beers after work with dinner, then going for another run and finishing off with another beer or two before bed. It’s a jam-packed day.
As I mentioned, I don’t think this is as crazy as it sounds. Yes, I’m upping my exercise mileage. Yes, I’m increasing my beer intake. But it’s not in a way that many people would think.
A lot of people consider exercise and drinking as something separate from the rest of their life. They have to carve out an hour to spend at the gym, or organize a party where they’re going to drink until they’re hung over the next day.
The beer runner approach is different. I enjoy beer and working out (usually) in moderation so I can experience them every day and sometimes even multiple times a day. Not always, of course, but more often than not.
As a result, I’ve found the reward for this more frequent activity is I get the rush of endorphins more often and the memorable first sip of a beer more than if I went in occasional, intense bursts of drinking beer or working out.
In this way beer and running become an even more ingrained and sustainable part of my lifestyle. Just how I like it.
Posted on Saturday, August 18th, 2012