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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Will Run for Beer

Chicago Marathon is a great race for a number of reasons. The city is simply awesome. The course is flat and fast. Close to 1 Million spectators come out and cheer. And what was a big surprise for me last year, after you finish and receive your medal, you can enjoy a glass of chilled beer. Its bitter taste is such a welcome change after over-saturated sweetness of energy bars, sports drinks and power gels. But why beer you might ask? Well, majority of runners have long suspected that running and beer went hand in hand. Drinking beer after a run was simply a very enjoyable way of "carbo-loading".  And now there is a solid proof that wheat beer offers additional health benefits. 

Runner’s World recently published a study from Munich University that demonstrated that moderate drinking of beer helps prevent colds. Beer includes polyphenols from brewing grains. Polyphenols are known to improve immune system and prevent inflammation:

"it was shown that non-alcoholic wheat beer containing polyphenols has a positive, health promoting effect on the human body: inflammation parameters in the blood were significantly reduced, and there was a lower frequency of infection with milder symptoms."

Recommendation for runners: drink a moderate amount or regular or non-alcoholic beer per day! 

And for those occasions when we need to drive or stay alert, non-alcoholic beer is a better option. It may be a little challenging to find one, but a friend of mine found a German non-alcoholic wheat beer, Erdinger.  It is carried by Legacy Liquor Store in the Olympic Village. 

BTW. Many runners from Alma are planning a trip to Berlin next fall. Not surprisingly, a glass of beer is offered to finishers of Berlin Marathon as well. Watch how Haile Gebrselassie, who won the race in 2009, enjoyed a super-sized glass of Erdinger. 

Drink responsibly! Run Strong!

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