Run for Change 5K (21:32)

On Saturday, I journeyed up to Moncks Corner for the Run for Change 5K.

Moncks Corner is a small town, and although it is only around 45 minutes away from Charleston, it has a different feel than the suburbs. I grew up visiting Charleston and have driven through Moncks Corner, but it’s been a long time and the area has a lot more subdivisions now. I guess the 50 people who move to this area per day have to live somewhere.

I left West Ashley early Saturday morning to drive to Moncks Corner, but it was a smooth, easy, drive with no traffic at that time. With a new car, little road trips to races are fun. I didn’t know what the race would be like or who I’d see, but I was up for the surprise.

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I got to the race, picked up my number and shirt, and warmed up on the streets of Downtown Moncks Corner. Like most small towns, some of the buildings were closed-up shops but others were renovated, including a few cafes and diners. The area reminded me of where I grew up.

After my warmup, I went back to the finish to catch a shuttle to the start. The Run for Change 5K is a point-to-point course, so everyone parked at the finish and took a shuttle to the start. The race started at the ministry’s headquarters, which is pretty secluded but only about 1.5 miles from the start.

I didn’t know very many people at the race, but I caught up with Chris from Without Limits, who was there to run with one of the kids he coaches, Cortez. It was great seeing a few familiar faces, chatting with them at the start, and encouraging each other.

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After a prayer and the National Anthem, the race began. Early on, I found myself running with another female side by side. We were basically fueling off of each other’s energy and she was running pretty strong. I wanted to stay as close to her as possible. I ended up running the first mile in 6:33– way too fast for my current abilities, but I didn’t want her to get much of a lead. I passed her just after the mile marker and didn’t look back.

The race took us around Santee Cooper and a few ponds, so it was a pretty course even if there wasn’t a ton to see. My Mile 2 split was 6:46, and while I was slowing down, I didn’t see the second place female anywhere close. I ran near Chris and Cortez for much of the second half of the race.

Mile 3 was weird. I was running near the stretch to the finish when my “finish line song” came on my iPod (it was Peanut Butter Jelly, the lunge track from BodyPump 94). I was pumped and hoped to finish my race before that song finished, when suddenly, my iPod died completely.

When I was a beginner runner, I started racing with music after hearing other runners’ conversations when I was running my hardest, and I felt really discouraged. With the music, I could block out conversations and things like keys jingling or runners who played music through their phones and without headphones (yes, this happens). The music also helps me concentrate when I’m in no-mans-land in a race- which is often the case in smaller races or longer distances.

My iPod dying through me off mentally, and being confused, I took a wrong turn. I have no clue how I missed that I shouldn’t turn where I did, but I quickly realized it and got back on track (literally) toward the finish. It added some distance to my race (I got 3.16, so not too much), and my Mile 3 split was 7:09.

I powered through the finish in 21:32 and heard the timing company say I was the first overall female. I got water, congratulated Chris and Cortez, the congratulated the second place female when she finished. She is only 14 years old and has a bright future in running.


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For winning first overall female, I received a very nice trophy and a jar of change ($20 in quarters), since it was the “Run for Change”. It was a fun and unique prize, and while I’ll probably take the winnings to CoinStar (Hello, Amazon Gift Card!), I’ll keep the jar to collect my spare change.

Run for Change 5K wasn’t my best race as far as strategy and pacing go, but it was a well organized event and I had lots of fun. Race proceeds benefit the Changed Lives Ministry, which helps people experiencing mental health issues and is a great cause.

I grew up in a small town with few opportunities for recreation, so I like supporting small town races and events. If the smaller races don’t get support, the organizers will stop hosting them. A lot of local kids ran, and I hope this race stays around for them. I would definitely support it and run again.

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Race Name: Run for Change 5K

Location: Moncks Corner, SC

Date and Time: May 14, 2016, 8 AM.

Course: Flat road, although not quite as flat as West Ashley. Closed point-to-point course. Two lanes of the road were blocked for us, and each time runners crossed Hwy 52 (twice), the traffic was very well-directed.  USATF Certified.

Swag: T-shirts

Post-race Food: Bananas, pretzels, water. Very simple.

Weather: 62 degrees, 82% humidity. Warm, but not yet unbearable!

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18 Responses to Run for Change 5K (21:32)

  1. Wow, 50 people move to that area per day?! That’s so interesting!

    So sorry your iPod died! It’s always tough when something like that threatens to throw you off your game. You finished with an amazing time, though!!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Supposedly, 50 people are moving here each day… but I don’t really believe it ;). Most statistics are made up, right?

      People also move away from Charleston. The media doesn’t cover that, but I know quite a few people who’ve moved here then left, or who lived here for years then left. This area changes a lot…

  2. hilaryruns says:

    I just got a new-to-me car a couple of weeks ago, so I can relate to finally feeling comfortable driving slightly longer away than usual–its kind of exciting not worrying about being stranded on the side of the road, haha! Congrats on the win, even with the extra distance and iPod issue! I only wear my iPod on recovery days, but I’m not sure why, it’s just an arbitrary rule I made up, though it does help get through those miles with something a little different to look forward to.

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I always wear mine on easy days/recovery days because those easy miles are just really hard for me to log. I actually don’t wear it during speed workouts on the track, and I don’t wear it in larger races (like the Bridge Run).

      If I am running with friends or other people, I never wear it- it’s for when I don’t want to socialize and chat!

  3. laurenweiner says:

    I love my ipod when I run. I like to have music, even if I’m not completely paying attention to it. I have a playlist I put on shuffle and I like to be surprised. Oftentimes I get the RIGHT song at the perfect time I need it.

    Congrats on the win! I know you weren’t perfectly pleased with the execution, but it was a good solid day!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      I love it when the right song comes on right when you need it. That was what happened Saturday right before it died, too!

      I have a backup ipod and plan to buy another one soon to replace the one that died. I’ve tried several things and it seems to be gone for good.

  4. I feel like it’s pretty unheard of for someone to take a wrong turn but still WIN the race! That’s amazing. I know you think you went out too fast, and maybe you can’t hold that pace, but I think it’s working for you. The only way to really test your limits in the 5K is to start really fast, and you do that. Cool prize!

    • Amy Lauren says:

      Yeah, I went out fast but wasn’t so mad about that in this race because I knew I could probably win or at least place top 3 (we don’t have many runners here and everyone knows who the speedy females are).

      I hope to be able to hold onto a pace in the 6:30s someday! Even my “not as great” 5Ks this summer have been a minute faster than my 5Ks last summer, so at least there’s overall improvement there :).

      • you will probably see the consistent 6:30paces sooner than what you think!!!!!
        way to win the race even though you made a wrong turn-glad you caught on to it!
        if it were me, I would still be lost,lol!
        great job chica, you are getting in some good running/races so far this spring/summer!!

      • Amy Lauren says:

        Nah, I knew pretty soon that I took the wrong turn, but I did panic a little. It cost me a few seconds but I’m glad I still won the race.

        I’m pretty sure the 6:30s will come this Fall. I just have to make it through the heat and humidity once those arrive. I will say the past few days have been quite nice and I’m glad it’s been unseasonably cool…

  5. supereli23 says:

    You got lost…and still won! Even if it was for a little time that you were headed the wrong direction, I can only imagine how mentally tough that would be to regroup.

  6. Angela says:

    I love that you got a jar of quarters as a prize!

  7. Wow congrats! That’s super speedy girl 🙂

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