Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Cover story

Summer is a great time for an evening run — and a brew afterward

ST. PETERSBURG — Like many runners, Nicole Huau needs a little help sometimes to get going, especially during the summer months, when Florida's heat and the humidity can make exercise unbearable.

But the 38-year-old St. Petersburg resident hits the pavement anyway, hot as it may be, because she can't wait to see her friends.

"It's always more than a run," said Huau, who works for a brokerage firm. "Afterward, we sample some craft brews, talk, socialize ... It's always a lot of fun."

Huau's friends all belong to a group called Running for Brews. The organization, which is free to join, started in Dunedin in 2010.

A second chapter started in Tampa shortly after, and now there are more than 20 clubs in Florida, plus some west to Arizona and north to Chicago.

"We typically get anywhere from 30 to 120 people for our weekly runs, depending on the location," said Huau, who handles marketing for Running for Brews. "And you don't have to be a great runner to join."

The runners club meets in Brandon and Clearwater on Wednesday nights, Dunedin on Tuesday and Thursday nights, St. Petersburg on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday nights, and Tampa on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights.

And for those who wonder whether this is a healthy combination, rest assured that the group puts running first and drinking second.

"It is usually a 5K route," Huau said. "And even if you don't stay afterward (for the beer), it's still a great way to get a good, safe run in on a predetermined route with other people."

While competitive runners may enjoy cruising with the Running for Brews crew, don't expect a hard-core workout that will trim your 10K time. Road racers would benefit more from more intense workouts, such as coach Joe Burgasser's Tuesday night speed sessions at the St. Petersburg College track.

Running for Brews often teams up with local running shops such as St. Petersburg's Fit2Run, whose store manager, Gary Robinson, also participates.

"It can be hard for people to find running partners," said Robinson, a former college runner and football player. "These organized runs will not only keep you motivated, but help you develop friendships that may carry on outside the weekly run."

Robinson's group meets Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. at Ferg's Sports Bar and Grill on Central Avenue in St. Petersburg, but members often get together on their own for weekend runs.

"It is easy to blow off a Saturday morning run," he said. "But it is a lot harder to not show up for a run when you know that you have a buddy waiting for you to run."

Chris Corbo, owner of the American Running Company in Clearwater, has a group of 60 runners that meets every week to work out, then heads next door to the Sea Dog Brewing Co. for microbrews.

"We have had people who, when they started off, couldn't run a mile," he said. "But they walked, ran a little, walked, ran a little ... and now they are doing 5Ks."

And sometimes, the tail does wag the dog. Tampa's legendary Irish pub, Four Green Fields, has a club that advertises itself as a group of "drinkers with a running problem."

The weekly runs, begun several years ago by several members of the military stationed at nearby MacDill Air Force Base, follow scenic Bayshore Boulevard every Tuesday evening.

"Then everybody comes back to the pub," said Randy Burns, who has been pouring pints of Harp and Guinness for 19 years. "Of course, running develops quite a thirst."

Terry Tomalin can be reached at tomalin@tampabay.com.

RESOURCES

Looking for an evening running group with socializing afterward? Here are some to try:

Four Green Fields Running Club

205 W Platt St., Tampa

(813) 254-4444

tampa.fourgreenfields.com

Tuesdays at 6 p.m.

Feet First

3487 Fourth St. N, St. Petersburg

(727) 898-1130

feetfirstrunning.com

Tuesdays at 7 p.m. (leave from Hooters on Fourth Street)

American Running Company

1689 Main St., Dunedin

(727) 799-1227

americanrunningcompany.com

Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m.

Fit2Run

256 Second St. N, St. Petersburg, (727) 822-2786

fit2run.com

Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. at Ferg's Sports Bar and Grill, Central Avenue

Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. at the store

Tampa Bay Runners

tampabayrunners.com

Wednesday Night Run, Carrollwood Walgreens

(Dale Mabry Highway and Fletcher Avenue) at 7:30 p.m.

Thursday Night Run,Temple Terrace Elementary

(124 Flotto Ave.) at 7 p.m.

Running for Brews

Brandon and Clearwater: Wednesday, 7 p.m.

Dunedin: Tuesday and Thursday, 7 p.m.

St. Petersburg: Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, 7 p.m.

Tampa: Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, 7 p.m.

For meeting locations, go to runningforbrews.com.

Summer is a great time for an evening run — and a brew afterward 06/28/13 [Last modified: Thursday, June 27, 2013 6:12pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Death toll, humanitarian crisis grow in Puerto Rico

    World

    SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico — A humanitarian crisis grew Saturday in Puerto Rico as towns were left without fresh water, fuel, power or phone service following Hurricane Maria's devastating passage across the island.

    Crew members assess electrical lines in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria on Friday in Puerto Rico. Mobile communications systems are being flown in but “it’s going to take a while.”
  2. N. Korea says strike against U.S. mainland is 'inevitable'

    World

    North Korea's foreign minister warned Saturday that a strike against the U.S. mainland is "inevitable" because President Donald Trump mocked leader Kim Jong Un with the belittling nickname "little rocketman."

  3. All-eyes photo gallery: Florida State Seminoles loss to the N.C. State Wolfpack

    News

    View a gallery of images from the Florida State Seminoles 27-21 loss to the N.C. State Wolfpack Saturday in Tallahassee. The Seminoles will face Wake Forest on Saturday, Sept. 30 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

    Florida State Seminoles fans sing the fight song during the Florida State Seminoles game against the North Carolina State Wolfpack on September 23, 2017, at Doak Campbell Stadium in Tallahassee, Fla.  At the half, North Carolina State Wolfpack 17, Florida State Seminoles 10.
  4. Helicopter, small aircraft collide at Clearwater Air Park

    News

    CLEARWATER — Two people suffered minor injuries after a helicopter and a small aircraft collided late Saturday afternoon at Clearwater Air Park, 1000 N Hercules Ave.

    Clearwater Fire Department emergency personal douse a plane with fire retardant after the plane crashed into a helicopter at Clearwater Air Park 1000 N Hercules Ave. Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017. According to Clearwater Fire two people sustained minor injuries. [Photo by Clearwater Fire Department]
  5. 4-year-old girl, man injured in Clearwater Beach boating crash

    Briefs

    A 4-year-old girl was airlifted with serious injuries after a personal watercraft she was riding on collided with a boat in the Intracoastal Waterway near Clearwater Beach just before 5 p.m. Saturday afternoon.