Beginners and Beyond

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Report and Photos: Paella 5K (Read 4 times)


Barking Mad To Run

    INTRO 

    I am Scott aka Scottydog aka Scotty Dogg, runner since 1983, cancer survivor – caught very early, so I actually had a fairly easy time of it - , retired Air Force, employee of University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), friend of dogs, fun-runner, and all-around punster and 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.  My only goals for a race these days are finish everything I start, have fun along the way, and finish standing up with no ambulance waiting for me.  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 – unless it’s a mean dog; then the biscuit goes in one direction and I go in another.  Hence my nickname “Scottydog.”

     

    And a big thanks to runningahead.com  for allowing me a “home” for my many many MANY race reports and photos.  Great site, free training log; calendars; running routes; maps; conversation forums for runners; and much more

     

    Here is yet another of my photo reports.  Full report below.    

     

    Link to photos only:      http://s166.photobucket.com/user/scottydog69/slideshow/2017%20Race%20Reports/2017%20Race%20No%2022%20Paella%205K

     

    A couple of the photos may have come out a bit blurry, sorry about that, I am definitely no professional photographer, lol, but at least the photos are free.

     

    BEFORE MY START

     

    Held on March 26, the Paella 5K was my 22nd race of 2017.  Race location was Missions County Park in San Antonio.  This was an inaugural 5K in conjunction with the Paella Challenge which brings together celebrity chefs from all over the country and Latin America to compete in an Iron Chef-style paella competition.  Paella, which I did not know at all, is a rice dish from Spain.  After reading the ingredients for it, I will probably never know it because I have to eat pretty bland due to my idiotic digestive system…stupid cancer.

    Picked my packet up the day before the race.  Pretty nice cotton tee race shirt.

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    Arrived at the park on race day with about 45 minutes until the 8 a.m. start time.  I thought I’d be early enough so parking would not be a problem…but I forgot all about the Paella competition….those folks – all the workers, volunteers, cooks, suppliers, etc., were all out in force getting everything ready for their 11 a.m. opening, and had probably been there already for a few hours, so the parking was already quite crowded.   Never-the-less I managed to find a pretty good spot, got my timing chip, and then took some pre-start photos.

     

    A view of the river from the Mission County Park pavilion area

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    Various participants, volunteers, etc.

     

    This lovely lady was one of the race directors

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    ON THE COURSE

    My Saturday 5K was 63 degrees, bright and sunny, with a stiff wind blowing at times; this event it was pretty overcast with lots of cloud cover, very little wind, practically none at all, and temp of about 65 degrees.  The usual 5K course done from Mission Park is a combination of the road and a part of the San Antonio Riverwalk.  With the exception of the bit at the start and the finish, this course stayed completely on the Riverwalk. I liked this course much better than the Mission Park course other races use.  Although the course for this race is hillier than the other usual course, this one gives some really nice views of the river, very scenic and enjoyable. For a huge event with hundreds of runners, the other course is probably more feasible – more room to spread out – but for this race this course was just perfect, we all had plenty of room as far as I could tell from where I was at any given time.  I am sure some people – especially the fast lead runners – may not have appreciated those hills, but at my pace, lol, I was thoroughly enjoying myself. I ended up with a chip time of 33:04, which was good enough for 2nd in my age group.  Actually, there were only 3 in my age group, lol.

     

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    Dino water stop!

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    About a mile to go..maybe a tad under that...

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    AFTER MY FINISH

     

    Only one small critique for after I finished – no water right by the finish line.  Had to ask one of the volunteers where it was and go look for it. Uggg.  Thankfully, it was really not that far away.  Even so, we runners are really spoiled, aren’t we, lol, and want our water right THERE when we finish; I know I always do – so maybe I’M just lazy, lol.  Well, just all part of the growing pains of an inaugural race and I’m sure this will get better as this race goes on.

     

    After I did find the water, I did a short cool down walk, drank my water, and then went to look for beer.  No beer, just Sangria.  I am not a big wine drinker, so I went searching for beer, lol.  I had seen some beer trucks coming in for the Paella contest so figured, hey, maybe they will give me a cold one, which I like to enjoy after I do a run or race. And usually just one, if I am  driving myself to-and-from the event, gotta stay sensible, drunk driving is just irresponsible and stupid. 

     

    But...SILLY ME!  I forgot all about the idiotic Sunday ‘blue laws’ our county has – no commercial alcohol can be served until after 10 a.m., good grief – that law needs to be changed! - and of course there is nothing the race folks can do about that, the law is the law.   I might just have to bring my own 1 beer for next year's finish. 

     

    So I enjoyed my water and wandered around taking some after photos of all the ‘happy finishers’ – ever notice runners are generally smiling more after they are done than before or during the race – volunteers, etc.

     

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    Look at all this stuff for the Paella Challenge....

     

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    No, he did not find me with a beer!  Very nice guy, we swapped a few veteran stories...

     

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    Mr. "Joe Cool" and his family....very nice people

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    Joe Cool got a medal too.  Way to go, buddy!

     

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    Look at that smile....I see hearts breaking in his high school years...

     

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    We are Runners....for truth, justice and the American way...as you can tell from our Super Runners stance...

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    And Super Runners get medals...

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    Got them just after they came across the finish line.   Congrats ladies!

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    I said to this young one..."Look at the camera.."   wow...if looks could kill, lol...  he was funny, though...cute kid

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    Lemme try that Super Runner stance...naw....just doesn't work for me, lol

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    I made a new friend today....the dog biscuits in my pocket helped, lol.

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    EPILOGUE

    This is a really nicely put on event with a great course, Sangria and breakfast tacos after the race for those who wanted it.  Pretty nice race medals too for the age group winners. I think this one will only get better if it continues and also grow larger as word about it gets around.  I’d definitely recommend this one to my fellow runners and I certainly would do it again.  Just sneak in a cold beer for me. 

     

    MUCHO thanks also to all folks that made this one possible for we participants; the sponsors, the volunteers, the law enforcement/security folks out there for us, the Paella folks who let me wander around the contest set-up area taking a couple of photos – dang, there must have been around 30+ tents, booths, etc., back there…and LOTS of various kinds of foods  - iaapweb.com or doing the course setup, timing, results…et al…all the folks who contributed for we participants.     THANK YOU.

     

    Hope you enjoyed the report and photos!

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