Photo by Andrew Tanglao on Unsplash
For three years, I ran and drank beer every single day.
I started the streak on my 29th birthday and my goal was to run at least one mile and drink at least one beer per day for a year. I wanted to do something big for the final year of my 20s.
It turns out I enjoyed it so much I did it for two years beyond my goal. During that time, I ran roughly 5,300 miles and drank more than 2,000 beers. Most beers came after the run, but some were during.
The whole idea was to work hard and reward myself. I wasn’t expecting to become a better runner as a result, but that’s exactly what happened.
I ran 30 miles for my 30th birthday, set PRs in the 5K and half marathon, and raced a sub 5-minute mile. I was running faster at age 30 than I did as a high school cross country athlete.
Most days I ran at lunchtime to fit it in during a busy day of work, school and family life. I found this made me more productive. It cleared my head in the middle of the day and re-focused me for what I had to accomplish in the afternoon and evening.
It established a consistent routine that structured my day. I was also motivated to get my work done so I could have my beer reward at the end of the day.
During this time I was featured in Runner’s World and Wired. There are lots of people who maintained running streaks longer than me, but it appears I was the only one with a beer and running streak.
This gave me an appreciation for the power of habit. Consistency is the best training plan.
Even on days I wasn’t feeling it, I knew I had to get out for at least one mile. Knowing I could have a beer for the effort when I got home made it even easier. Usually those single miles would turn into much longer runs as running became second nature.
Today, when I want to get back in a rhythm, I go streaking. You don’t have to do three full years to get in a good habit, though. A week works too. So let’s start there.
Week 3 CHALLENGE.
Fit: Plan to go for a run or exercise every day for the next 7 days. Do something every day, no exceptions! For your reward, drink the same beer every day for 7 days. Each day, try to detect another subtle taste of the beer. See you you can learn from consistency.
Post what you did on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtags #BeerFit and #Streak.