Forget The Beer Mile, The ‘Pizza Mile’ Is Sure To Become The Newest Running Craze

You’re probably familiar with the feat of athleticism known as the beer mile, in which runners participate in a mile long speed race, typically taking place on a standard running track, chugging one 12 ounce beer before each quarter mile loop. (Depending on the rules of a particular race, runners may or may not be disqualified for puking before the finish.)

But why stop at beer when there are so many other things to hastily consume between running laps? That’s what one Philadelphia running group, the West Philly Runners, set out to accomplish Wednesday evening with the “pizza mile.” Full disclosure, this story is near and dear to my heart as I have called this group family for about four years now, and while we are prone to coming up with ridiculous races (literally racing a city bus and attempting to “beat the commute” come to mind), this particular race was for a good cause.

Pasqually’s Pizza, a local pizzeria serving craft beer that the group often finishes their runs at, was burglarized over the weekend with thieves making off with thousands in cash, lottery tickets, and cigarettes. The race was a way of supporting a local business that has been so good to the runners over the years. As group leader Alon Abramson told PhillyMag earlier this week, “We want the gang at Pasqually’s to know that we value what they do in our community. We want them to feel welcome here and appreciated.”

But onto the race itself! About 25 brave souls attempted to stupidly inhale pizza in between sprints. If this were an officially regulated pizza mile, which will almost definitely be a thing someday, it would probably consist of the standard four laps and four slices. But being that the lap around the block was approximately one-third mile (for a total of about 9/10ths of a mile), you work with what you’ve got. Consider it a trial run!

In the end, the better part of 15 pizzas were consumed, with male and female winners coming in at an insanely fast 6:32 and 9:47 finish times, respectively, taking home medals of pizza cutters hung around their necks. And even more amazingly, nobody even puked, despite the designated trash cans set out for such a purpose. All in all, it was a successful event, and beyond the actual participants, about 75 people in total showed up to eat pizza, drink beer and support a beloved local business.