If you have ever strolled through one of Colorado’s many world-class craft breweries, you’ve probably seen them: Some guy or gal — likely sporting some sweet threads from Patagonia or REI — with chiseled calf muscles, rock-hard abs and that air of general fitness about them that so many in the Centennial State effortlessly radiate.
There they sit, downing beer after beer. After beer.
And we’re not talking some Michelob Ultra-type swill, here. Heavens no, this is Colorado after all. Calorie count is among the last thing the state’s award-winning brewers are worrying about when they’re crafting decadent beers.
So, this leads us to a very perplexing question: How in the mile-high hell do these people balance their Colorado beer with their Colorado bodies?
Well, for many it’s a steady regiment of grueling bike rides, scaling sheer cliffs or spending hours in the winter sweating their way through the steep and deep. The beers, it seems, come only after their almost-daily triathlon-like calorie burns.
But maybe there’s another way?
Seems several local brewpubs have figured out at least part of the solution — and they’ve found it within their four walls.
The thinking goes something like this: You’re probably going to hit the local brew pub occasionally. And you need to get some exercise anyway. So, why not combine the two?
Whether it’s yoga in a tap room, an hour spent battling kettle bells a few feet from brew tanks or meeting at the brewery to go for a run, local brewers are offering up one-stop-shopping for your fitness and beer-drinking needs.
At Two22Brew near East Quincy Avenue and Reservoir Road, the regulars know the brewery isn’t just a place to snag a glass of Reformation Scottish Ale or Chocolate (Cherry on Top) Porter. It’s also a good spot to burn a few calories.
For close to two years, the brewery in Centennial has hosted a weekly run club, where a dozen or two runners meet at the brewery for a few-mile run organized and mapped by the club’s leaders at Two22. You score discounts when you get back to the brewery after the run and further prizes if you complete a certain number of runs.
The brewery is also one of several to host “Brewery Boot Camp,” an exercise program that visits several local breweries for an hour-long workout complete with kettle bells and some cross-fit-type moves.
At Two22 and breweries around the area it seems, beer and exercise are the new take on beer and pretzels.
“It’s just the Colorado lifestyle in general,” says owner Paige Schuster. “People are really active and they also like craft beer. It just goes hand in hand.”
Personal trainer Lindsay Chadev, one of the founders and owners of Brewery Boot Camp, said her philosophy has always been that if someone isn’t mentally fit, their physical fitness level doesn’t matter much.
And if you live in Colorado and can’t enjoy the state’s awesome beer? Well, Chadev says, that just won’t do.
“If you can’t enjoy a beer or two here and there, then sometimes working out just isn’t quite worth it,” she says.
The company was founded in 2015 and Chadev said they get everyone from cross-fit die-hards to folks just looking to get in a little better shape, but who aren’t real comfortable in the gym. Many of those folks, it seems, are plenty comfortable in a brewery, which makes the workout especially approachable.