Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The Renaissance Mile

Attempting to broaden my horizons in my never ending quest for continuous improvement I stumbled across something referred to as the Beer Mile by those who dare to seek out new and original challenges. Not exactly an Olympic event yet; however, a title just as coveted by those of us plugged into the underground running community as being a gold medalist.

For those of you unfamiliar with the event, the beer mile is where a participant must drink the entire contents of a 12 oz beer then complete a single lap running around a standard running track, 400 meters or ¼ mile, then repeat until 4 laps and 4 beers are complete. The event is timed, fastest time wins. One last detail, there is a one lap penalty for puking during your attempt.

In 2014 the 5 minute beer was broken by James Nielsen, which is as big of an achievement in the rogue running community as the first person to breach the 4 minute standard mile. Much the same fashion, once the barrier was initially breached others from around the globe seemed to follow suite with the knowledge that it was physically possible.

So where does that leave me? Rest assured I have little chance of ever breaking a 5 minute beer mile or being the world record holder in such an event. To date my fastest mile time is 4:58 and that is without consuming 4 cold beverages along the way. Granted there are age adjusted – or master’s categories - and even a grand master category, both which I think with the proper motivation I could potentially threaten. But those would likely be temporary as someone would come along at some point and take the title, just as I had done. No sir, I want my world record to stand the test of time. Or at least as long as possible.

As I scoured the internet for beer mile records I came across the official website for this unofficial event. I stumbled onto a lot of great stories, videos, and attempts to break this record. But then most unexpectedly I found a video of someone claiming yet another title: the Rubiks Cube mile. Lo and behold it dawned on me. Perhaps there is a world record that I could attain?

The person who claimed the Rubik’s Cube mile at that time was certainly not a runner. He was simply a guy that knew how to solve the cube who also happened to realize there was such a record and no one had ever properly laid claim to it. Yes, beermile.com does require proof to review each attempt prior to posting claims to any titles and apparently no one had submitted such proof. So he plodded along a field in the dead of winter, on a snow covered track, completing 4 laps after solving the cube 4 times, and the rest is history.

Sure I used to solve the Rubik’s Cube around the inception of the game. I was hardly a math genius who created my own method, but I did have access to a book that taught you a method that worked in less than 5 minutes. Clearly that isn’t going to bode well these days. Search for Rubiks Cube videos and you will see people solving the entire cube in less than 1 minute.

I continued to look for a world record more suited for a person of my abilities and lightning struck. That once- in-a-lifetime find. A record that appeared to have been created for me. If not me specifically, then someone like me:

The Renaissance Mile.              

Perfect for a man with my diverse skill set. As you know a renaissance man was believed to be a clever person good at many different things. I immediately began to look at the requirements, evaluating how difficult it would be to complete each task.

In all there are 6 events necessary for claiming the Renaissance Mile world record. I plan to systematically work on the events, beginning with the event I deem most likely to require the most training first, adding in the events that require less training. I will document and detail each event along with my progress for this particular event over the coming weeks.

Please join me on my vision quest. My swan song. My attempt to aspire to greatness. I can promise you it shall be entertaining. If someone like me is capable of becoming a world record holder, dare to imagine what someone like you is capable of doing?


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