Braving the Cold in Carmel

Brian Johnson (MM8807, DA707, HF7287)

Marathon Distance or Longer # 32
State 17
Carmel Marathon, Carmel Indiana

This was a fun race where I did get a chance to see quite a few Marathon Maniacs and Half Fanatics

The story of the day was, “Sleet. Wind. Sun. Sleet. Wind. Sun.” all day.
5 minutes before the race started, we had a nice bit of sleet come in and reduce visibility. Thankfully it didn’t last too long.

Carmel is a city of roundabouts. There were a lot of them.
There are not a lot of hills, and I think the highest point at points was the top of a bridge.

one of the coolest things I saw during the race was 2 people leading a blind runner.

For me, this race was a bit of a challenge. I knew to make it with a 6:30 (ish) cutoff, I would need to bank time early and often. So, the first half of the race was a challenge to see if I could complete it in about 3 hours and bank some time going into the second half of the race.
I did.
Bank Early. Bank Often.
In the second half of the race, that time advantage came into play.
I stayed ahead of the 6:30 pacer until somewhere into mile 17. Between 17 and 21 we stayed near each other. she eventually got in front of me and left me behind.
that was when I ran into a different issue. The sweeper.
In most races, there is a police car/ambulance at the extreme back of the race. They are “the sweeper”. if you get behind them, you are done. You are “swept” from the course.
I started playing the game of, “how far can I stay in front of the sweeper” for the next 3 miles.
I stayed right on my time goal the entire time.
I knew I had to hit the bike trail at mile 24 to know I was going to be ok.
The police car kept getting closer and closer, I wasn’t sure I was going to make it. I also stated feeling the little “twinges” on the back of my legs knowing I wasn’t too far from leg cramps starting.
I finally made the turn and breathed a sigh of relief. I wasn’t going to get swept from the course, I eventually made it back.
The back side of the curse can be very lonely if you are a 6-hour marathoner. There were multiple times that I was a good 45 minutes or more when I would see another racer.
it was nice to get into the last mile and know that I was almost done.

I was pleased with my final time.
3 weeks ago, dead tired, I ran a marathon in 7:50
I ran Carmel in 6:35:35. It was my fastest time in 3 years and better by more than 1:15.
the race would have been a lot more fun if I didn’t have to wear my winter gear all day.
Next race is in 2 weeks in Kansas.

Photo and Post Credit Brian Johnson

Published by Maniacs Fanatics Madness

This is the blog site for the Marathon Maniacs, Half Fanatics and Ultra Madness running clubs

Leave a Reply