Going the Extra Mile: Carmel runners prepare in various ways for Indy Mini Marathon this May


Maddie Kosc

Pushing forward: Yael Kiser and Mia Bruder, track athletes and sophomores, jog to warm up for their training. By running together, the two athletes motivated each other to keep running.

Sarah Kim

Even for student athletes who participate in cross-country and track, running a distance as long as 13.1 miles can seem quite daunting. This is the case for Mia Bruder, cross-country runner and sophomore. Bruder started running for CHS in her freshman year and developed a love for the sport. With encouragement from her friends, Bruder decided to sign up for the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon, which takes place May 4 in Indianapolis.

“A couple of my friends from cross-country have been running the Mini for a couple years now and it was something I have been interested in for a while. One of my friends is an ambassador for the Mini this year so she was really trying to get me to sign up,” Bruder said.

However, despite her running background, Bruder said she realized she still had to train for the half-marathon.

“I had never run such a long distance before. During track and cross-country we have long runs, but the distances for those are never longer than eight miles,” Bruder said. “Since I had never done a race this long, I had no idea how to train.”

Bruder said she turned to her friends for help.

“Two of my friends have been running the Mini for a couple of years now and so I decided to ask them to help me train. I found out that they had different training plans and that made me realize that everyone has their own way of preparing,” Bruder said.

Maddie Kosc
Bell ringer: Savannah Hill, track athlete and sophomore, rings a bell after participating in one of the OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini-Marathon trial runs. Hill used the trial as a way to help train for the mini-marathon.

One of those friends is sophomore Savannah Hill, an ambassador for the mini-marathon this year.

“As an ambassador for the Mini, I mainly focus on encouraging other people to sign up for the Mini and the other races that are connected to the Mini. There is the Miler Series starting at the beginning of February. There is a race each month leading up to the Mini and the distances increase each race,” Hill said. “They are a really great way to prepare for the Mini and help to make sure you are on track with your training plan, so I definitely encourage people to sign up for the Mini as well.”

On the other hand, sophomore Yael Kiser said she has a different way to prepare.

“I run track up until around the date of the Mini, so it is really hard because you have to get in long-distance runs in addition to the track workouts that we are supposed to do,” Kiser said. “Luckily, closer to the end of the season our coach lets those of us that are running the Mini to substitute certain track workouts with longer runs. This is really helpful because it almost creates a training plan where I just have to show up to practice and that motivates me to run.”

Finally, some participants such as Katie Kelly, assistant cross-country coach and social studies teacher, prepare for the mini-marathon completely independently. Kelly first ran the mini-marathon in 2009.

“I signed up because I wanted to walk with another teacher.  So, then we trained to do it and when we got to the race, I ended up running quite a bit of it and I figured out that I loved it,” Kelly said. “So I signed up again to run it this May.”

Kelly has run a number of longer distances since then, participating in triathlons and full marathons, and has developed her own training plan.

“I have a training plan where I start off small and I run three to four miles four days a week. Throughout the year, I will build on a little bit each week and have long runs that will start off as five or six miles but will later go up to 10 or 11 miles before the race itself,” Kelly said.

As an experienced runner for longer distances, Kelly said, “For anyone interested in running a mini-marathon, I would say look for a coach or a club or experienced friends who have done it before, so that they can give you a lot of advice and help you get started.”

In the end, Bruder said she was just excited about the experience itself.

“I think it would just be really cool to be able to say that I’ve run a mini-marathon before. It is a huge accomplishment and no matter the outcome I know I will be proud of myself,” Bruder said.