Elite runners to use Carmel Marathon to prepare for Olympic Trials


Anna Weber is eager for another crack at the U.S. Olympic Trials.

“It’s the only place where you can see where you stand against the best marathoners in the country,” she said.

Weber, 30, who ran track and cross country for Marquette University, quit running for a couple years but started again while working on a master’s degree at Indiana University.

“Turns out I was a decent marathoner,” Weber said. “I decided to try for the 2016 Olympics Trials (in Los Angeles) and qualified. I finished in 56th. I’ve been a professional runner ever since.”

Weber, who lives in Speedway and coaches runners online, qualified for the 2020 Olympic Trials  by finishing in second place in the Philadelphia Marathon in November 2018. Weber said a runner has to run the race in less than 2 hours and 45 minutes to qualify.

As part of her training, Weber will compete March 30 in the half-marathon in the ninth annual Carmel Marathon.  In addition, there are 10K and 5K runs.

“I’ll be focusing on the 10K on the track this summer,” Weber said. “The half-marathon works well in my training schedule to get a good fitness check.”

Weber said her goal is to improve on her 2016 trials showing. The 2020 trials are Feb. 29, 2020, in Atlanta.

“I definitely didn’t have the best day (at the 2016 trials),” Weber said. “My overall goal would be to be in the top 15 at the trials. I want to know how good I can be. I want to keep pushing my limits and what I can achieve.”

She doesn’t plan to run more marathons until the trials.

“My biggest thing will be building speed,” she said.

The top three women make the U.S. Olympic team.

Elite runner Sara Bishop, from Dayton, Ohio, plans to compete in the half-marathon in Carmel as well.

“I’m using it as a tune-up race before the Boston Marathon (April 15),” Bishop said.

In 2015, Bishop ran the Boston Marathon but became hypothermic and did not finish, completing 23 1/2 miles.

“So, I have some unfinished business,” Bishop said.

Bishop competed in the 800 meters for the Auburn University women’s track and field team.

“I ran cross country, but I wasn’t very good,” Bishop said. “I took eight years off from running and got back into it after I had kids.”

Bishop, 36, is a full-time running coach. She has already qualified for the Olympic Trials in the marathon.

“Carmel is one of the races I recommend to my runners to come and run,” Bishop said. “It’s one of the fastest spring races.”

On the male side, Indianapolis resident Jesse Davis will compete in the full marathon in Carmel. Davis is attempting to qualify for the Olympic Trials for the third time.

For more, visit carmelmarathon.com.

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