Training for Summertime 5Ks (June 22-28)

Whew. Running 40+ miles a week in the South Carolina summer is a different sport than running 40+ miles a week during our (pleasant) winter.

Along with running this week, I volunteered at the Daniel Island Happy Hour 5K series.  It was cooler than May’s 5K and a beautiful night for a 5K on the island.

Images from the second race in the 2015 Daniel Island Happy Hour 5k Series on Daniel Island near Charleston, South Carolina.

I volunteered with a girl named Kaitlyn and we registered runners, handed out water, acted as course marshals, and cheered. Even though we didn’t physically run the 5K, I slept really well that night and I’m sure the other volunteers did too. Thank the race volunteers- they work super hard!

2015 Daniel Island Happy Hour 5k Series Race #2-83

On Thursday, I felt “off” all day. It seemed like I woke up exhausted and never got going. In talking to a friend, I found out that he and others felt the same. Part of mine was physical exhaustion from work and running; however, I’ve had a weird emotional exhaustion from all that’s gone on this week.

Lots of emotionally-charged debates occurred this week, while Charleston’s still grieving from the nine murders at Emanuel AME Church. The events, debates, and grief take a toll on us.

It’s easy to escape on social media- just turn the computer or phone off- but harder when you live in Charleston. I run by Emanuel AME, along with historical statues downtown that are guarded 24-7 by police in case someone tries to vandalize them. On our Saturday morning run, one girl counted 26 police cars heading toward a funeral at the church. Our public library also has a memorial honoring Cynthia Hurd, one of the victims who managed that branch (it is now being renamed after her).


I rested a lot on Thursday, took a relaxing, long, soaking bath, hung out in my pajamas, and had ice cream that afternoon. Self-care is the best. I also went to the church on Saturday morning to see the memorials and remember those who lost their lives.


This week, I ran 45.5 miles. I also did a core workout and a sunrise yoga class.

Monday: 6.2 miles + Core

Tuesday: 7.1 miles

Wednesday: Sunrise Yoga + 5.1 miles at the track (400s)

Thursday: No workout.

Friday: 7 miles

Saturday: 12.1 miles (10.4 mile long run + bridge repeats)

Sunday: 8 miles

I didn’t set out to run this much this week, and I’m thinking more cross training or strength training may be in the future. I miss BodyPump and want to cross train! My workouts this week weren’t eventful, but I ran outside each time except Friday.

On Wednesday, we ran a 12 x 400 workout, which is always a tough one. I think running the 3 x 1 mile repeats last week was easier! Summer track workouts are the best because you don’t have to carry water while running and you get to take a lot of breaks and call it “recovery”.  We had a big crowd, and it was fun but exhausting.

Sunday’s run had freeze pops at the end, which makes any run awesome. It was 82 degrees, 74% humidity, and felt like 88 degrees. That’s practically a cold front. We ran 8 miles and it was one of my best training runs in awhile. Hopefully this helps me get my racing confidence back before July 9’s Race the Landing finale.


Hope everyone has a great and safe holiday week!

Professional photographs of the Daniel Island Happy Hour 5K were taken by Brian Fancher Photography. Brian is a local runner and triathlete, as well as a fellow TrySports Mount Pleasant ambassador. Please consider Brian Fancher Photography for your sports, wedding, portrait, or commercial photography needs.

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20 Responses to Training for Summertime 5Ks (June 22-28)

  1. So sorry to hear about the awful event that took place in your area. Good job on honoring your body and taking care of yourself! That’s the most important thing. You had a great week – 45.5 miles is badass! GREAT job 🙂 400s are so fun – I haven’t done them in forever!!!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      They are pretty fun! Each week we do a different workout, it is always 5K specific speedwork (everything from 200m to 1600m). It’s pretty much the only race-specific type of workout I do all week…

  2. Pam says:

    I can’t imagine what the mood would be in Charleston right now so yes, that would take an emotional toll on your body. Nice job volunteering at the local 5k. It really is important for runners to see both sides of a race, by running them and volunteering. I usually end up as a course marshall at our local races and it is fun to cheer everyone to the finish.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I don’t think we had as many volunteers for this one, so they put everyone to work pretty hard. All of the funerals have been held, Obama and Joe Biden have left (he visits about once a year anyway to vacation at Kiawah), and Calhoun Street reopens to traffic today… so things are calming down. It’s still pretty somber downtown near the church…

  3. KrisLawrence says:

    I ran 12 by 400’s this week also. I have to agree with you, it’s tough!! Before the workout I thought “It’s only 400’s, how hard could it be?” Wrong. The heat was killer and like you, I would prefer the mile repeats.

    I immediately thought of you when I heard the news in Charleston. I can’t imagine the somber mood there right now. Did you see President Obama sing Amazing Grace at the ceremony?I cried like a baby watching that and thinking of the families.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I think intervals with more breaks, like 12 x 400, are harder because there are so many more chances to just call it and quit.

      I did see Obama singing at the ceremony! I thought it was quite moving, the whole funeral was (it was on all afternoon here). Joe Biden was in town as well and he very discretely went to the church for a service yesterday. He not-so-discretely left town today (backing up traffic near me, he vacations at Kiawah which is near my home).

  4. Laur says:

    I can only imagine how hard it is for a community to bounce back from such a devastating thing. For me, I stay away from reading the newspaper or watching too much news because it’s mostly things which scare me. I live in a free country and I do not want fear to be a common feeling when I walk out my front door. It’s unfortunate events like this take place because we all live in amazing places.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I’ve also turned off the news! The news is always negative and I hate to say this, but when they reported on something besides the AME Church, like backed up traffic, I was secretly kind of happy because I would rather hear about traffic because it brings a sense of… normalcy.

  5. Gracie says:

    I can definitely see how your community must be hurting. It’s not quite the same, but here in NOLA after Katrina the pain was almost palpable. So much unhappiness and loss. I hope somehow some good comes out of this tragedy. It’s just so hard to understand how someone can be so evil and so hard to reconcile the loss. It’s so useless and stupid.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I cannot imagine being in NOLA after Katrina…

      The tragedy has really brought Charleston together. I feel like people are more considerate of others now, but still… the families will never get over this. Even the church, I doubt I will ever walk or run past it and *not* think about the murders there.

  6. I can only imagine the feelings in the community of Charleston right now. Such a senseless tragedy.

  7. My thoughts are with you all in Charleston, so tragic and senseless. I can only imagine the emotional toll plus running 40 miles in a week! That is a lot on the body!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I did run a lot this week, but I sorta just happened that way. Work can be crazy stressful as well. Fortunately everything is calming down here now that the victims’ funerals are over. There were rumors of Westboro Baptist Church showing up to protest and fortunately nothing like that happened!

  8. I did 12 x 400s this past weekend and it was HARD! Didn’t help that it was the first speed workout I’d done in ages…

  9. Jennifer says:

    That looks like a fun 5K course. I haven’t run 12 x 400s, but I would probably feel the same way as you (3 x 1 miles is easier).

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I have never run one of these 5Ks- only volunteered. I guess I need to run one this year so that I can experience the course. It is trail or wooden bridge, not really any pavement, with a lot of turns. The times are always fast though.

  10. Elizabeth C. says:

    The volunteering looks fun and rewarding. Sounds like a tiring week overall- so good job getting it done in that crazy heat. And I agree with you on the freeze pop thing. When I got back from my run this morning, my husband had a spoonful of ice cream waiting for me! Also- 12 x 400 is hard core. That’s mentally tough to do so many of them!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I love volunteering at this series (although it is tough since I’ve never run one, because people ask questions about the course when they register).

      We’ve had freeze pops the last few weeks at group run and it is the best. One guy brings them in a cooler, but a few grocery stores sell them already frozen (great idea!).

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