Friday, December 30, 2016

2016 Waxhaw Beer Mile Race Report

I've always wanted to do a beer mile. It's gotten so popular lately, that it seems like a lot of people are doing them.  I hadn't heard of any actual organized beer mile races, in my area.  I know there are some around the Raleigh area. I'm sure there is one or two in Charlotte, but I guess I'm too lazy to look into it. Being the offseason and all.

Anyways, my buddy Paul told me that they have a low key one every year.  This year it was announced to everyone in our MSA swim group.  I actually was almost excited about it when I first heard about it. One of the woman in our swim group hosts it over in Waxhaw.  This year was the 5th Annual.
Me, Paul, Laurent, Karen, and Jen
It happened to be the weekend after the Charlotte Marathon Relay. So as I was not in any sort of real shape, I didn't expect much.  At least I had gotten in a hard 6.2 mile run the weekend before.  Still, as the race got closer, I could barely contain my excitement and went to twitter:

The "race" was scheduled for 1pm.  I arrived at 12:45 pm, and parked a block up on a side street.  I talked to some people I hadn't seen in a while. Like Steve. I swam with him like all of 2015, but this year he was MIA.  People started slowly streaming in.  Paul had gotten a Keg of 'Golden Boy' from Triple C Brewing. So this was not ordinary beer mile swill fest.  We had good beer.
The course was just and out and back from the cul-de-sac.  So 1 lap was supposed to be 1/4 of a mile. Beer, then a lap.  Do that four times.  Sounds pretty straight forward.  Karen explained the rules to everyone.  They were giving a prize for the top overall.  They also had a kids juice division. We had to wait for the mail carrier to come through the cul-de-sac, then we got ready to go.  They had red solo cups setup on a table filled with beer.  Everyone had a cup with their name on it.  A couple people were going to be filling cups as the race was going on.  Carolann was the official starter and timer.  I put the cup in my right hand and put it up to my mouth.  I put my left hand up with my Garmin, so I could hit the 'start' button and begin drinking at the same time.  A countdown, then the GO!
Garmin Tracking
So I started Chugging.  I wasn't doing too bad, but some people really knocked down that first beer.  I was definitely in the middle of the pack as I downed that first brew. And off I went.  So at the end of cul-de-sac we're at the lower end of a slight downhill.  So we start off running uphill. With a beer sloshing around your stomach.  It was much harder to get the legs churning than I thought it would be.  Still, I managed to gain on people and started passing as I came back down.
Elevation, Pace, Cadence
Beer number 2 was harder than the first to get down.  The uphill was about the same.  It was similar as I gained on people going up the hill, made the turn at the orange pylon and then passed them on the downhill.  For some reason, beer number 3 went down smooth as silk.  I passed Jeremy at that point which put me into second behind Laurent.  I pushed as much as I could on that lap to bring me home for the final beer.
Don't mind that crazy straight line, I accidentilly hit Start later in the day.
Admittedly beer 4 was a struggle, but I didn't want to lose second place.  I downed it, gained my bearings and took off on the final lap.  I was too far behind to catch Laurent, so I pretty much cruised home in 2nd.  Laurent definitely won it on the beer chugging.  He is originally from Canada, so there's that.  My Garmin had 6:37 for 0.94 miles.  Maybe we can get a more accurate course next year.  That calculates out to a 7:02 pace for a mile.
Good Crowd for the 5th Annual Beer Mile
So I was a bit loopy after the race. Well, do the math: 4 beers in 6-1/2 minutes will probably do that. Karen had food setup on their back patio, so everyone hung out for a while and ate.  It was great to hang out with everyone with a little competition thrown in.  Next year I will know what to expect.  Hopefully I can bring home the Win. For America. #makeamericanbeermilegreatagain