You Can’t Run From Love 8K Recap and Overall Win

Spoiler: I won first overall female.

Saturday, I ran my first 8K- the You Can’t Run From Love 8K here in West Ashley.


The You Can’t Run From Love 8K was an inaugural race from OnShore Racing, which is a running community that my friends Virginia and Rocky started last year. After seeing the need for affordable, fun races here in Charleston, they ran with it (pun intended), and this was their second race- the first being December’s Winter Solstice 5K in Hampton Park.

OnShore Racing’s events and group runs are actually held *in Charleston* and are cheap enough to bring the whole family out. Instead of offering t-shirts, they spend that money on post-race parties, refreshments, party favors, and drinks, while donating a portion of all proceeds to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society as well as the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.


I was super excited about the You Can’t Run From Love 8K for a number of reasons:

  • I’ve never raced an 8K. Insta-PR, anyone?
  • The race was held 5 minutes from my home in West Ashley Suburbia by the Swamps. I normally commute 20-30 minutes to the peninsula or Mt. Pleasant for races or group runs.
  • You could run as a team, and Clay agreed to be my teammate.
  • It was Clay’s first time running an 8K (4.98 miles?), so insta-PR and insta-PDR (personal distance record) for him.
  • The post-race refreshments included pancakes. I am a pancake fanatic.

We slept in until 7:15 Saturday morning, and I got up and ate my traditional pre-race Pop Tart and coffee. I’m sure the healthy living police don’t like that I eat pop tarts, but it works for the Wando XC boys and it works for me too. I need simple sugars, okay?

Clay and I arrived at West Ashley Park and it was chilly. Winds gusting up to 20 mph, and I kept my gloves on the whole race. Fortunately the sun was out, so today’s conditions were better than any other 2014 race. I did a little warmup jog and my usual drills, then headed to the start and well… started.



The course ran through the park, an adjoining neighborhood, and a side road with some businesses. Parts of the course were trail and a few areas were muddy, and I think it helped me because I got a little recovery and slowed down a bit for these parts, then sped up on the pavement.


I settled into a pace and stuck with it, passing a high school girl who I thought was a boy. It’s hard to tell from behind when you’re racing, and she had short hair and lots of clothes on. She was a sweet kiddo who runs for a local high school, even though I didn’t realize she was a she until after the race. It’s okay- people always think I’m a high school cross country runner too. After passing her, I dualed it out with a couple guys for the rest of the race, including a very strong headwind.

Miles 3.5-4 was an “out” and miles 4-4.5ish was a “back”- perfect for seeing other runners. At mile 4, I was about 90% sure I was in the lead for the ladies, but seeing the other lady on the “back” showed I wasn’t super far ahead of her. I recognized her from the Pajama Run and remembered passing her there, so I knew I could hold her off- I just had to follow through. The tailwind was a nice bonus.

The last half mile, I thought about how cool it would be to win overall, especially in my community. Rarely do we have races in West Ashley- the only two others I know of are the Avondale 5K and the Race the Landing Series. We get very little love here, including from the running community, and I wanted to win and represent West Ashley.


I crossed the finish line in 36:26 (7:20 mi. pace).

Instead of finisher’s medals, the organizers handed out roses and told me I won. My prize included a bouquet of roses, a container of candy, and a $50 gift card to Fleet Feet Mt. Pleasant, who sponsored the race.


I took off to cool down and run in with Clay, who I met just past mile 3 where he was cramping bad. Clay and I ran in for about 2 miles together, stopping to take a few walk breaks when he needed to. I enjoyed the cooldown and encouraging, then let him run to the finish. My handsome husband has quite the finishing kick. He finished in 1:06:50, beating his 2 goals for the race (under 1:10 and not finishing last).


After finishing, I hung out with my friend Liz, who lives in my neighborhood and also teaches BodyPump at my gym. Despite feeling tired last week, she met her running goals too and finished in just under an hour. She also won her age group- congratulations Liz!


Everyone enjoyed the Smores, pancakes, hot chocolate, and beverages at the post-race party too. 3 coolers of booze and 1 cooler of water? Priorities.


Overall, this was a great local race- the inaugural event had 88 runners, and I heard lots of positive comments on the after party, course, the neighborhood, and the park.


Lots of people haven’t heard of or visited West Ashley Park, so hopefully they’ll come out now. Most runners didn’t seem to mind the lack of a shirt, especially considering the cheap entry fees ($15 a person or $25 per team).

Kudos to OnShore Racing for bringing a great running event to West Ashley!


Special thanks to Chandler Meadows of CBM Photography, official course photographer. All CBM Photography photos in this post are used with her permission. Check out her Facebook page here.

This entry was posted in 8Ks/5 Milers, Avondale/West Ashley, OnShore Racing, Race Recaps, West Ashley and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

34 Responses to You Can’t Run From Love 8K Recap and Overall Win

  1. Congrats on the Overall Female that’s awesome speedy! Congrats to Clay on his PR/PDR also! By the way, Pop Tarts are my pre-race food of choice before races! Brown Sugar Cinnamon is my flavor of choice!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Glad I’m not the only one who likes Pop Tarts. My favorite is frosted blueberry, but I also like the Raspberry ones from Earth Fare (they’re the Nature’s Path brand, I think it is).

  2. Amy says:

    Way to go, Amy! First place is impressive! So are 7:20 miles 🙂 Now all your 8Ks are going to have to live up to high expectations. That race sounds great and I love that there are no T-shirts and the money goes to good places (food + charity).

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Thanks- hehe this was my first 8K, and it’s not a very common distance. The next one I do will probably be this race next year :). The first time racing any distance is kinda weird. I was a bit worried about how to pace, my friend told me at the start to pace more like I would a 5K and he was right!

  3. Sounds like a great race. I like races that would rather spend on post race things. Though I do enjoy a good tshirts and medal. I typically don’t win overall so I wouldn’t be lucky enough to score a sweet gift card to fleet feet. That is awesome. You can never go wrong with flowers either 🙂

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Yeah, I like a nice shirt and a nice prize- but lots of local races don’t have really nice shirts. If the shirt is a white cotton shirt I would really rather not have it and just do a no shirt option, you know?

      The flowers are pretty nice and fun for V-Day. I never ask or expect Clay to buy me flowers because I’m just not a flower type of girl but it’s neat that we have em.

  4. mtbader says:

    Congrats on your big win! That is awesome!!!!
    I ran in the race too and thought it was amazingly done by OnShore. I’d heard good things about the group and was psyched to check out this event–and boy did they live up to expectations! The after race festivities were phenomenal and there really was a great community vibe.
    Great recap of the race and event overall, too–you nailed it!
    I’ll be posting a recap someday but I’m waaaaaay behind on my blogging…haha.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Thanks! I can’t wait to read your recap too, sometimes I wait a few days for mine and sometimes I write them right away, it just depends. Obviously I was kinda excited to write this one. This was only their 2nd timed race so it went off great and the after party rocked. Especially those smores ;).

  5. Britany Mertens says:

    I loved the race! My first 8k as well and the price was definitely right ! I have enough t-shirts and I like running races just to be with people and be a part of the community. Very impressed with the race overall ! Congrats on the win !

  6. Liz says:

    I have to go to work but just wanted to say AWESOME job before I forgot to come back and tell you tonight! How cool to win overall! Woohoo!!!!

  7. Wow! Congratulations Amy! I always love reading your race recaps! You’re amazing!
    I love the prize you got too! Roses and candies (which I thought was very sweet!) and $50 gift card to a running store! I would love to have that too!!! 🙂

  8. spectacuLAUR says:

    Congrats on placing first female and the insta-PR! Mimosas and pancakes… SIGN ME UP!

  9. Awesome job on the great win! Burrr… it looks cold, but you did great. Cool prizes too.

  10. Super cool that you were the overall female winner.

  11. harveylisam says:

    Congrats! 2014 is shaping up to be a great year for you. 🙂

  12. Congrats on the race, $50 to FF, sweet!!!

  13. kristenk says:

    Congrats on winning! That is a sweet prize!

  14. Hey Amy! First of all, I saw the last post… that is so neat and precious that Nadine had her baby! Eeek. It’s a girl! 😀

    Congratulations on winning first place! Were you actually the first one to cross the finish line? Is that how that works?

    Pancakes are yummy. I like chocolate chip ones. Have a great day!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I was the first lady to cross the finish line… like 16 guys beat me, but that’s usually how it goes (occasionally a female will be the first to cross the line).

      BTW, it’s not like what you see on TV… much less glamorous… no breaking a tape or anything. Technically my foot was the first female foot to strike the little sensor line at the finish, haha.

  15. Congrats on first place and on winning great prizes, too! I think I need to buy some pop-tarts for my next race!

  16. Pingback: From an 8K to the Marathon | iRaced

  17. congrats on first! ANd I love that you have a pop tart before your race, I always had oats mix with a banana and PB. I don’t eat oats anymore (darn belly) haha.

  18. LilMysNinja says:

    Cool race and congrats on winning overall female!! 8k is an odd race distance. I think we only have one or two of those here in Columbia. And hey, if your pre-race fueling routine isn’t broke, then don’t fix it, right?!? Pretty jealous of that $50 gift card too. 🙂 Congrats to Clay for completing a new distance!!

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