Runners and Beer Drinkers don’t necessarily fall from the same tree. That said, both have some shared characteristics leading to a common bond and understanding. A runner is often a masochist, an eccentric a strong individual and often someone that enjoys beer. A beer drinker is someone that also enjoys beer and is apparently also a masochist. Tending to both runners and beer drinkers the Bridge Brewing Company held a unique event at the brewery where a love for both beer and running would be put to the ultimate test. A 10km run is no walk in the park but if you do it carrying two 1.89l growlers filled with water it takes on a new sense of challenge.
Limited to a 50 participant registration, 50% of the runners elected to take on the growler challenge and complete the entire run with an added 10+ pounds in their hands. This sounds like an awkward, painful and weird thing to do and you are quite correct. The body is not accustomed to the added weight or awkward shape of the bottle which transfers great fatigue to the neck, shoulders, arms and wrists. Despite the pain, discomfort and seemingly pointless idea, 24 of the 25 growler-carrying participants finished the run and were rewarded for their efforts.
Whether Bridge Brewing expected this turnout is up for debate but in addition to donating all proceeds to the Harvest Project each and every runner that carried the growlers was rewarded with 2 free growler fills of the North Shore Pale Ale each week for an entire month. That is 15.2 litres of beer per person or 363 litres of beer that was given away, not including a few pints consumed at the event. This is a lot of free beer for a lot of people that worked very hard for their reward.
While it may seem like a bit of a loss for this brewery the reward will come in due time as this event is unique and will have runners and beer drinkers alike talking for months. If you missed out on the run, watch out in 2014 for another year and what I am sure will be an even more exciting event. In the meantime, head over to the Bridge Brewing Company and pick up a couple of growlers for your training. You have a year to build those shoulder muscles and run the most ridiculous beer-running race of your life.