Or the coffin.
"I've been racing in wheelchairs since I was 8," Chalmers said. "That was the first time I thought I'd totally wipe out. There was no chance I was gonna make it. I was thinking, 'This is gonna be painful."
But somehow he kept his cool and slowed down enough to avoid pinballing off the walls and ending the journey right there.
By the way, that wasn't the highest speed Chalmers attained on this trip — not even close.
On the push east into Oakland, Md., on Day 59, during a long downhill straightaway with no traffic and no wind, Chalmers hit 65 mph. Which is practically like breaking the sound barrier in a wheelchair.
When she got word of it, his mom, Linda Chalmers, texted a simple request: "Make sure you don't go over 40, OK, please? I'm rolling my eyes at you, just so you have a visual."
The bull on the road to Illiopolis, Ill., was another adventure.
"We got a call [from the RV] that there was a bull ahead of us," Chalmers recalled. "It was going crazy, jumping up and down and running across the road."
Me, I would've been thinking "detour" at this point. Heavy detour.
But Chalmers pressed on. Fortunately, as he passed the beast, it stopped snorting and jumping and did nothing more than stare malevolently at him, with the cold eyes of a mafia don.
Chalmers, who was on the wheelchair basketball and track teams at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and raced in the London Paralympics last year, said he concentrated more on training his mind than training his body for his cross-country journey.
"People said 75 percent of this [was] going to be mental," he said. So Chalmers said he spent hours thinking: "OK, this is going to happen, and what can you do to overcome it?"
But the physical pounding got to him, too. The heat wiped him out on several days. His hands became raw and bleeding despite the plastic molded racing gloves he wore. His forearms and wrists took a beating, as well as his shoulders, which tend to pop in and out of place as a result of old training injuries.
"I've learned that the key to setting goals and pushing yourself is finding what your reason is," Chalmers said when the 41-mile push from Washington to Baltimore was over. "You see these New Year's resolutions and they last two weeks. But I'm so happy doing this. You need to find your reason for doing something and just keep pushing."
Listen to Kevin Cowherd Tuesdays at 7:20 a.m. on 15.7 The Fan's "The Norris and Davis Show."