Isle of Palms Beach 5K recap and fast times with friends

Times spent with friends always last longer than times on the finish clock… 

This weekend, my friend Belinda visited with her son to go to a wedding here in Charleston. Affectionately known to me as “Track Mama”, Belinda and I coached distance together at the Florence Track Club and got really close last season, so I was excited for her visit. After all, it’s great to see people you miss- and Florence still feels like home, even after seven weeks here in Charleston.

Running the Isle of Palms Beach 5K was her idea, and since my half training schedule only called for three miles, and I run on IOP almost every Saturday, it worked out great. I can’t really turn down an invitation to a race!

Belinda and I ran in honor of her son Taylor, who was killed in a car accident on his way to visit Charleston three years ago (you can read about him here). Every year, his family holds a race in Florence in his honor, and Belinda and her husband Greg are running a race in all 50 states in honor of him. We took this pre-race picture and got Taylor in there too.

I never actually met Taylor, but I know he was a great guy because his family radiates his sweet spirit every day. The first year I ran that race, I was super sick with anemia and didn’t know it, nor did I know his family at the time, but I believe there was a deeper purpose for me being there. Who would think his mom and I would be friends and run a race together two years later?

The race was much more organized than the Trophy Lakes Cross Country 5K I ran a few weeks ago. It was pretty big, with over 200 people in the 5K and almost 100 people running the 10K, but everything was very well organized. Lots of water stops were available as well as post-race refreshments and of course- the beach!

The race started promptly at 8 AM. I missed my TrySports group run to do the race. Fortunately, I saw one of the run group leaders, Jim, during the first mile of the race. He was finishing up his morning run and said hi when he saw me doing the race. I missed running with the group and our fun conversations this weekend, so I was glad to see him! I also wore my headband to represent the run club here, Believe Achieve, and I wore my Running to Heaven shirt to represent Taylor and Florence running.

The ‘out’ part of the course was great, but the ‘back’ was pretty tough- no way would I run faster in the second half of the course. A few people passed me, and I saw the 3 mile marker sign and thought it was the finish, so I started my “kick” a little early. I saw the time clock and pumped it out hoping for a sub-26 minute 5K, but I hit 26:00 exactly. That wind was brutal on the way back! Belinda was there cheering and getting me water as soon as I finished (she is definitely worthy of the Track Mama title). She finished in 24:26 and placed 1st in her age group- she is super speedy!

I placed 3rd out of 22 in mine (had to correct the stats on my race number), and even though awards were only for the top two in the age group- I know I did my best, and the city has some fast females! 5K awards were mailed out, but we hung around for the awards ceremony and had lots of catching up conversations.

We had a great time running together and hanging out at IOP- hopefully we can run together again sometime.

After the awards, she headed back to her hotel to get ready for the wedding she was going to that afternoon, and I went home to head to lunch with Clay. We went to Roly Poly, which is a wrap/sandwich restaurant here, and I had my favorite post-run snack, frozen yogurt!

It was tart frozen yogurt with chocolate and caramel syrups, granola, and dark chocolate chips- so delicious.


This was a really enjoyable race and it’s always great to see friends when they visit (if anyone visits Charleston and wants to run, just hit me up, I’m always up for it!). Like always, I had to write my time and quotes on my race number too.

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This entry was posted in 5Ks, Anemia, Coaching, Florence Track Club, Friends, IOP/Sullivan's, Race for Taylor, Race Recaps, Running Clubs, Track and Field and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to Isle of Palms Beach 5K recap and fast times with friends

  1. Nice job girl, I have loved running in Charleston when I have been there. Tart froyo is one of my favorites.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      This was actually my first time eating Tart froyo. I liked it, but I think next time I’ll try it with fruit. I think the chocolate and caramel would’ve gone better with vanilla and fruit toppings would go better with tart.

  2. I think tart froyo would go well with fruit but not with like chocolately things. I have had it once-but then again, I literally go to froyo for the toppings LOL.

    Glad your 5k went well and I do agree and why I love running with friends as well!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Haha, me too! I love trying all the varieties and toppings at the pay per ounce places! But I have to say chocolate syrup is one of my faves on just about any flavor.

  3. Rebecca says:

    Hello, Amy! :D

    I remember you talking about racing and Taylor a long time ago in your posts. And I also remember when you were sick with anemia. Not good. I’m so relieved that you’re feeling better in that area now. I’ve had friends who are anemic, but praise God there are ways to overcome it. :)

    Another 5K race! Nice!! Wow, that IS an honor that you had the opportunitity to run with Taylor’s mother. Beautiful friendship.

    So, I see earbuds in your photo… I’ve always wondered what kinds of music you listen to when you run? What gets you pumpin’? :)

    I know what you mean about catch-up conversations. I called my friend Chelsea in CO on Friday, and we always talk on the phone for a long time. I’ll be mentioning her in my blog again soon, because she’s getting married in September. So, as I work things out for the event, you’ll hear more about her again. I havent seen her since 2010. :(

    Good luck as you prepare for your next race! :D

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Yep, I’ve participated in the race each year and hope to continue every year as long as I can. I think it’d be neat to do it every year and after like, 10 years, I can say I did it every single year it went on. Not many people would be able to say that =). I’m VERY glad I’m no longer anemic. Trust me, if I was that sick I would not be running at all right now, I’m glad I overcame it and learned to love running again!

      Yup, Taylor’s mom Belinda and I are pretty tight ever since we coached track together. It’s amazing the friendships you form when you’re involved in things like that. I made tons of friends at the track and I’m super thankful for them all. In fact, both of my friends who I’ve seen since moving were track people (Belinda and my friend Shayna who visited a few weeks ago).

      I listen to all kinds of music when I run. I have everything from country to rap to Christian rock. Basically any song with a good beat is what I listen to, and sometimes random 90s stuff too. I even have old-school Backstreet Boys and Spice Girls on there sometimes, just because it reminds me of being a teen :).

  4. The beach looks like a great place to run! I’ve always wanted to run or even just take a long walk along a beach but I’m nowhere near one.

    I love the tart froyo when it’s a fruit flavor, then it goes perfectly with all the fresh fruit the froyo places always have. But I usually go for the more unusual froyo flavors like marshmallow or apple pie because I’m not as crazy about the toppings.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I’ve never seen those froyos but when I do, I will definitely try them. Apple pie frozen yogurt sounds delicious to me. If you ever come down South, definitely take a trip to the coast and enjoy the beach, you’ll love it!

  5. Kara says:

    Wow I can’t even imagine what your friend has gone though. How terrible. I’m sure it was so wonderful to see her again! Great job on the race!!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      You’re right, I can’t imagine the pain she feels every day, but their family is so involved with running (which was her son’s favorite activity) and the track club, so it’s like his spirit lives on through that.

      It’s always wonderful to see friends who visit. It really makes my day, I hope some more people can come down now that we’re settled in.

  6. allieksmith says:

    How cool that it worked out for you to run the Isle of Palms Beach 5k!! What a meaningful race and you did great!

  7. what a great race! I definitely need to start joining races that are for a cause! and i always right on my race bibs too. Just so I can look back and see what the race was all about!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      You should :). I think having a reason to run really does help, if I mentally dedicate my race to someone or have a really deeper purpose behind it. Maybe it’s because you focus on the positives instead of any negative feelings you have during the run or something, but it really helps me!

  8. Still, 26:00 is great! I’ve always wanted to hit the exact minute mark in a race :)
    Glad to see you are doing so well! It’s been too long since I’ve read!
    xoxo Haley

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Thanks Haley! I read your post earlier and need to respond so I’ll do that tonight or tomorrow. I guess hitting the exact minute mark was kinda neat (even though I would love to have hit it a minute or so earlier, hehe). Hopefully after training in the heat so much this summer I’ll have better fall times *crosses fingers*.

  9. chasingthekenyans says:

    ah dang! so close, but a 26:00 is still great :) and how fun to run with an old flo-town friend! i can’t believe it’s been 7 weeks already. love those awards!!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Yeah, I can’t believe it’s been 7 weeks either! I still feel so new here, but at the same time I feel like I’ve lived here while because I’ve already done so much. With the heat and running in the sand, I’m not complaining with my 26:00.

  10. I read the link to Taylor’s Story, I got a little teary eyed. That’s very nice of you to join her mom to run for their son.
    I haven’t signed up for a race by the beach! That’s awesome! The races you are joining are so cool!
    Congratulations! 26:00!!! Wooohooo! :)

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