Beginners and Beyond


Second 5K of 3 this weekend: Jingle Bell 5K for Arthritis (Read 23 times)


Barking Mad To Run


    I am Scott aka Scottydog, runner since 1983, cancer survivor, retired Air Force, employee of University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), friend of dogs, fun-runner, and all-around goofball.  In 2003 I had spinal arthritis flare up and ever since then I’ve done the run/walk method since it hurts my back too much now to run continuously with no walk breaks.  I’m on what I call my “2F Plan” which stands for Fun and Finish.  At events that I now do for fun I carry my camera, chase “Great Legs” to help motivate my slow old man self to keep moving forward, and take pictures before, during, and after the race. Sometimes I even get a nice post-race sweaty hug from one of the Great Legs ladies.   I then do a pictorial race report of my events.  I also carry dog biscuits with me to treat any dogs I may meet at a run, hence my nickname “Scottydog.” Here is yet another of my Race Reports With Photos, and my thanks to all the people I interacted with for their graciousness and good humor in letting me take photos of them.




    My 71st race of 2013 and the second of three 5Ks I did this weekend (first was Sights and Sounds of Christmas 5K, report at this link: ).  Held on Saturday, Dec 7, 2013 at 5 PM in San Antonio.  Supports the Arthritis Foundation.  The presenting sponsor was Valero Energy Corporation - - , a  worldwide Fortune 500 company headquartered in San Antonio that does a lot for its local communities. The weather was slightly better than my morning 5K in San Marcos, the temp had gone all the way up to 36 degrees.  I still wore 4 layers. Big grin Besides the 5K there was also a 1-mile "Snowman Shuffle" walk.  The walkers started at 4:30 pm and the runners started at 5 PM.  I think there were more doing the 1-mile walk than the 5K, as AthleteGuild - the course setup and timing folks - told me there  were 86 finishers for the 5K, 42 male and 44 female.  So, once again, like my 5K in the morning, the ladies proved to be 'hardier", as more ladies came out into the cold than guys did.Joking    After my morning 5K I thought I would really be taking it easy for this one and finish anywhere from 36 to 40 minutes.  However, my last mile I somehow got a burst of energy and ended up finishing in 33:22, with my time from Mile 2 to the finish being done in 10:10. Go figure.    I ended up 2nd in my age group.  Mainly because there were only 3 in m age group, lol.  So I got a nice medal, another one for me to give to the cancer kids at the San Antonio Children's  Hospital, which is what I do with any medals that I get...which is rare, lol, for me to get one, with my slow pace.




    Before The Race


    Start and finish area was at Valero HQ, which has a huge complex in San Antonio, right near UTSA, the university for which I work.  Valero kindly allowed everyone to park in their onsite parking garage, which was very convenient.  It may have been cold, but Valero did it up right for us, with the use of their activity pavilion that had nice and warm indoor restrooms instead of porta-pottys, and space heaters conveniently located so folks could stand near them and keep warm before the start.

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    Santa's corner in the pavilion

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    And Santa was there...

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    H-E-B, another Fortune 500 company based in San Antonio, was also involved with the event, and represented by their mascot "Buddy."


    Yours Truly, with Buddy



    Participants, volunteers, etc, pre-start





















    Massage chair for those who wanted a pre-race massage

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    Jazzercise Warm Up

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    On The Course


    Through the Valero grounds and then out onto the nearby Greenway trails, where we did an out-and-back and finished up back at
    Valero. The course was mainly flat but there was a downhill on the way to the trails, which became an uphill on the way back to Valero.


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    The greenway paved trail had "Jingle Bell" markers to show us the way.

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    Rudolph was our turn-around point

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    After that I got a burst of energy and high-tailed it nonstop back to the finish.


    After The Race - Happy Finishers, etc

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    A small event, but a fun one.  This event usually does have a much larger turn-out, but he weather probably kept lots of folks home (wimps!  Wink...j/k, of course).   They missed out on lots of friendly folks, a nice course, and a unique medal that has a jingle bell on it, so it jingles when it moves.  Also a nice long-sleeved tee in the goody bag.   Race Director Pat did a great job with this one, and kudos to Valero for letting us use their venue.   Big thanks to all the volunteers who came out into the cold for we participants.    As I have some pretty bad arthritis myself (5 levels in my spine; my knee, and mildly in my hands), this one is very personal for me and will continue to be on my race calender.

    "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." Theodore Roosevelt


      I love the tutus and Christmas hats - lots of fun.  Sounds like a good race.


        Good on you, Scotty, for braving the weather for  your cause. And I admire you so much for donating your medals to kids who can benefit so much. Keep on doing what you're doing!



        "It's not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves."

        ~ Sir Edmund Hillary


          Way to go, Scotty!  I know that this is a cause that hits home for you, and it looks like it was a great event.  Loved all the festive outfits people wore!  Thanks for sharing!

          But The Smile That I Sent Out Returned With You.


            After The Race - Happy Finishers, etc


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            None happier than you my man!


              Good for you for supporting this race for a good cause-- one that many runners also have to deal with.  It still looks cold, but yet everyone still looks cheerful. Maybe costumes keep people warmer?  Anyway congratulations for race 71 of the year!


              "We do not become the people who this world needs simply by turning our backs on anyone we don’t like, trust, or deem healthy enough to be in our presence. "  ---- Shasta Nelson


              Smaller By The Day

                Excellent job AGAIN Scotty!  Sounds like you kicked butt in the second half there.


                Weight 100 pounds lost

                5K 31:02 Sept. 2012 / 23:36 Sept. 2013 (Same Course)

                10K 48:59 April 2013

                HM 2:03:56 Nov. 2012 / 1:46:50 March 2013

                MARATHON 3:57:33 Nov. 2013


                  It's a shame the weather kept so many people away from supporting a good cause.


                  Great job on the double, Scotty!