Race the Landing #1 (23:09)

A few hours after leaving the May Day Marathon post-race party, I laced up my running shoes again for the first race in the Race the Landing series. Okay, so it was a different pair of shoes for the 5K, and I also showered and changed clothes…

Lots of races charge hefty entry fees ($30 for a 5K) and don’t deliver, offering runners the simplest cotton shirts, minimal refreshments, only gun timing, and a very bland race experience. In many cases, these races aren’t directed by runners, so they don’t have the runners’ interests at heart. I’ve ran those races, and if you run a lot, you probably have too.


Race the Landing is *not* that kind of race.

You get a hefty discount for registering for the 5-race series, along with a tech tank top as a shirt, 5-deep age group awards (5 year age groups), chip timing, a delicious meal, post-race beer if you want it, prizes at each race, and one of the most scenic courses in the Charleston area.

The Race the Landing series is in its third year and is conveniently held at Charles Towne Landing here in West Ashley. Since most races are held Downtown or in Mt. Pleasant, I like to support West Ashley events when I can. I ran the All American 5K and Recycle Reuse Renew 5K, both of which were  good experiences, so signing up for the series was a no-brainer.

Clay also signed up because I raved about how much fun it was and how beautiful the course is. I was pretty much delighted because it meant we had a guaranteed date night for five Thursday nights this summer.


Even after running the May Day half marathon that morning, I didn’t want to miss the first race of the series- and my running date night.

We got to the race super early because I thought it started at 6:30. Turns out, the kids run was at 6:30 with the 5K starting at 7, so we were over an hour early. Oops- but better to be early than running late, and at least we know for next week. A few of the May Day peeps were there and lots of other runners we know, so I ran my mouth before running off to warm up. I only warmed up a little since I ran 13.1 that morning.


The start of Race the Landing is always tricky because you circle the Founder’s Hall parking lot, then the first mile is downhill. As always on this course, my first mile was my fastest mile. The race volunteers at the mile markers yell out splits, and the course is clearly marked with lots of them, along with two water stations and on-course photography from Brian Fancher.

After the first mile, I decided my goal was to stay ahead of another local runner, Dan Clapper, who is known for taking selfies during the Cooper River Bridge Run. With 13.1 miles already on my legs for the day, I threw all time goals and expectations out. I primarily wanted to make sure Dan got my good side if he had the camera on this run…

An older gentleman volunteering yelled out “Lead Lady!” when I ran by him in Mile 2. I didn’t believe him because I knew I wasn’t running as fast as I normally do because of the half marathon, and I thought this race would have a faster field. Still, when someone yells out that you’re in the lead, you hold that pace if you can. I managed to peak behind me on one turn and didn’t see any ladies immediately behind me.


I crossed the finish in 23:09 and was second place female overall. Not sure how the volunteer who thought I was in the lead missed the actual race winner, as she clearly looked female.

After I got water and congratulated the female winner (who was shocked I ran a 5K after a half that morning), I took off on a cooldown run to cheer for Clay and some other friends still on the course. I love cheering for other runners and high fiving them- if I’m going to cool down, I may as well make it beneficial for as many runners as possible.

Clay had an epic finish; his finish “kick” is crazy fast from sprinting after all those years of high school football. I think his epic finish kick shocked a lot of onlookers and runners who were hanging out near the finish line.


We headed inside for some tasty dinner- chicken, pulled pork, macaroni and cheese, red rice, cole slaw, tomatoes, and rolls and the awards ceremony. The food was really delicious and a band called Second Honeymoon played while we ate and waited on awards. All overall and age group winners got little black bear trophies.


I was extremely surprised to place, as I thought the race would have a faster field, and my 23:09 was my slowest 5K of 2014.  Of course, after running a half marathon that morning, I expected a slower-for-me time and prepared to take whatever I got. Clay and I are really excited for the rest of the series- trying to beat our previous times on the course and enjoying the beautiful scenery and entertainment.


Thanks to Chandler Meadows of CBM Photography for the finish line pictures of Clay and I. Be sure to check out her Facebook page.

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

14 Responses to Race the Landing #1 (23:09)

  1. Looks like a nice well put together race. I hate when volunteers and people shout that sort of thing at you. Sometimes it’s not accurate, but in bigger races are you supposed to respond to every single person….Anyways oomph what a day of workouts for you! I hope you are recovering well!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      You know, even though the guy yelled the wrong thing, I’m kinda thankful he did. It gave me a nice mental boost of confidence and after a long day of running, I needed that. At least it was some encouragement, I can’t stand it when you do a race and none of the volunteers cheer for the runners, they just stand there :(.

      Recovery was a beast because I wound up sick the next week, delaying it even more. I don’t know what it is but it takes me awhile to recover. The 5Ks I recover quickly but I think it might be due to training harder than I should and not racing as hard as I should.

  2. What a big day of running for you! So cool you and the hubs are doing the series together, yay for running date nights!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Thanks- yep we have had two running race date nights so far and they were both super fun. 3 more to go, 2 races in June and one in July to finish off the series. It’s a lot of fun.

  3. Pam says:

    You are amazing Amy…..finishing second female after a half that morning is fantastic. The little black bear trophies were a nice change from the ordinary AG prizes of medals. How fun that you have five date nights planned too and they include running!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Thanks- yeah all the prizes at Race the Landing are unique and somehow represent Charles Towne Landing and the park itself. I guess they have a bear in the zoo :).

  4. harveylisam says:

    Great job! I love the bear trophies haha. It’s great that Clay has a good finishing kick – it’s always such an adrenaline rush when you can really push it at the end.

  5. Love this race series. You did awesome on a 5K post half! So awesome.
    Plus I love the bears, It is the only trophy I have ever gotten and so cute!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      It is a cute trophy- congratulations on earning one yourself! It’s better than the coin award :).

      I did the same time Saturday at the mom’s run… so weird!

  6. I wish I could do this race at least once! It always looks like such a blast! Boo for Thursday night work! haha. Great job, especially for after the 1/2! Now it’s rest time for that foot!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Yep, the foot issue sucks but I’ll get through it and come back stronger. Next RTL isn’t until June anyway so hopefully all will be well by then. Ironically I did better at this race than I did the next Thursday, and I ran this same time at the Mom’s Run. Crazy huh? Maybe I should run 13.1 mile warm ups more often!

  7. Congrats on 2nd OA! Love that bear trophy – so cute!

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