Barking Mad To Run
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/2016%20Race%20Reports/2016%20Race%2074%20Puppy%20Rescue%20Mission%205K
A couple of the photos came out a bit blurry, sorry about that, I am definitely no professional photographer, lol, but at least the photos are free.
BEFORE THE START
This was my 74th race of 2016. I signed up with Virtual Strides (virtual strides.com) to do the Puppy Rescue Mission 5K (www.puppyrescuemission.com) a virtual race that I could do on my own time, but had to complete before Dec 31, 2016. The primary mission of The Puppy Rescue Mission, Inc. (TPRM), is to fund-raise and assist in pet rescue, foster and re-homing when needed, in particular pets of soldiers, especially those deployed in war zones. TPRM assists with requests, logistics, administration and fund-raising for the adopted stray dogs of war rescued by and bonded with soldiers. I completed this 5K on the evening of Dec 29 along the San Antonio Riverwalk. My friend, George, kindly paced along with me and kept track of the distance and time with his ‘tracker’ equipment and told me when we had reached the turn-around point, as we were doing an out-and-back. Prior to our start, I got a photo with George, with me wearing the bib Virtual Strides had sent me to download.
ON MY COURSE
For this one, the crazy Texas weather was in play. On Dec 28, San Antonio had been in the 70s. On Thursday morning, the 29th, a “cold front” – at least cold for we South Texans, lol – moved in and our ‘high’ for the day only reached 54 degrees, so we had a 20 degree drop in temp. That wasn’t so bad, but the darn wind was also involved, blowing at around 20 mph, and also gusting at times – so near the water as we ran, it felt a lot colder; I was glad I had worn a base layer under my running shirt. We started near the Riverwalk at a very popular local eatery/bar – Taco Land – where a lot of us do a “Taco Land Thursday” group run each week. Taco Land is a great little place really friendly staff, good food and a wide variety of drinks, including lots of beer on tap. After the photo, George and I got started, with him timing us and keeping track of the distance. I did this 5K much slower than I usually do a 5K at a ‘formal race’, mainly because I kept stopping to take photos of the Riverwalk and the Riverwalk holiday lights along the way, and then George and I would start up again. I was probably driving him crazy with all this stopping, lol, but he was very patient about it. We ended up actually doing 3.2 miles in 41:17, averaging something like 13-something minute miles. And here are the ‘along the San Antonio Riverwalk’ photos I took as we did this out and back.
Near the Pearl Brewery area; still a bit too light to see the holiday lights on the trees behind George. And the River barges were busy with customers for the 'holiday tour" of the river.
The Grotto on the "Museum Reach" side of the Riverwalk, just down from the San Antonio Museum of Art
Fish carvings, all hand carved by local artists
Starting to be able to see the tree lights a bit better
Wonder if Santa ever catches anything?
The river barge locks along the river, with a holiday lights Christmas tree
Nice view of the river as we ran along...a bit dark, but still enjoyable
Trees decked out in lights along the river
VFW Post 10 - the oldest VFW post in Texas - decked out for the holidays
Back near where I took the first photo...you can see the tree lights much better now
AFTER THE FINISH
Back to Taco Land, where my wife was waiting for me and eating her dinner as she waited. Got George and I each a “post-race” beer and also wandered around chatting with friends who were getting ready to start their group run – George and I had started a bit earlier, at 5:30 rather than the usual 6:30 start time for the group run – and this was an early “New Year’s Eve” running party for our group, so lots of folks had some party hats on, and other interesting attire. After they got going, George headed on home to get some birthday cake – happy birthday to his son! – and I went and changed into some dry clothes, and then got some food myself, and Gail and I sat at a table and chatted with some other runners who had started earlier too. And, of course, during all these goings-on, I was intermittently taking various photos.
Lights on the tree at Taco Land
I want a hat like that, lol. The light on top also lit up and blinked off-and-on
Me with my very patient and beautiful wife. Sometimes I am amazed that she has put up with me for 32 years of marriage, lol.
Gail and our friend, "Cow"... I think she should change her nickname to "Wow"....super nice lady.....
My friend Steve here is all lit up...and he hasn't even had a drink yet.
Me and Steve...
Me and my 'man-crush', Bob...awwww....
Bob and a much more attractive companion.
Yep, they give you a plate-load of food at Taco Land
Yep, I had my treats...and this beautiful doggie loved me for it, lol. Here with doggie and doggie's humans
This is the first time I’ve used Virtual Strides, which a friend of mine ‘introduced’ me to. Very easy to use, reasonably priced registration fee, lots of various races you can choose from – I picked a military oriented one, since I am retired military – and Virtual Strides makes a donation to the nonprofit of the race you select. And once I post my results, then they send a nice medal out to me, with which I will probably do my usual thing with medals that I get – pass it on to the cancer kids down at San Antonio Children’s Hospital. I enjoyed doing this virtual race and Virtual Strides made the process very easy. I will probably sign up for more in the future.
Mucho thanks to George for keeping me company and having the patience of a Saint out there on the Riverwalk; I am probably not the easiest person to run with, lol, as I tend to ‘flit about’ – especially when I have a camera in my hand – going here and there. Thanks to my beautiful wife for coming along with me – although she really didn’t have much choice, since her car is in the shop, so when I picked her up from work, she had to go where I went, lol – and for her patience in letting me ‘do my thing’ after I was finished with the run, e.g., “social hour” for a while with all my running buds. Love this woman – and since she lives with me 24-7, those of you who know me must realize she DEFINITELY has a lot of patience, lol. Yep, I most assuredly ‘married up’ when we got together, I think I got the better part of the deal.
One more race to do on Dec 31st in Kyle, Texas; and that will give me a grand total of 75 races done for the year 2016.
"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." Theodore Roosevelt
Is 75 a record? Congratulations in any case on doing so many this year.