Beginners and Beyond


Report and Photos: April Fools 5K (Read 14 times)

Barking Mad To Run



    I am Scott aka Scottydog aka Scotty Dogg, 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 15th race of 2015.  Held - naturally - on April 1, 2015 at Ladybird Johnson Park, a very nice local area park with paved and off-road trails.  Start time of 6:30 PM.  Of course, because it was April Fools, we were not sure what the exact distance would be. Last year it was 2.9 miles, the year before that, 3.5.  So who knows?   Our MC, Mark, kept giving us updates as to how long before we started our "5k-ish" distance.  Weather was pretty warm, about 83 degrees with some dark clouds overhead, so it was pretty humid too.   Mother Nature was kind to us, however, in that it did not thunderstorm on us, we only got a spattering of rain and that was pretty much after everyone was already finished. The distance ended up being about 3 miles even.  I finished in 32:27 and got 1st in my age group.  Matter of fact, I think everyone got a medal - some of us the medal with this race name, and some of us a medal with the name of a different race - April Fools!  Really nice tech tee shirts given out to participants also.




    First, apologies and WARNING.  I am not a great photographer at any time and for this event  my camera, for some reason, had trouble focusing, so some of these are a bit blurry, but you can still make out who the folks are.  I've used this same camera for about the last 7 or 8 years, so it may be time for a new one;  however, you know runners - we tend to hold on to everything, even our old retired shoes in the closet that we don't use anymore, lol.    Maybe someday, I'll be able to let this camera go but it will be tough... .it's  my 'sentimental favorite.'   As said, I am not a great photographer...but at least the photos are free, so if you do want to save any of them to your own files in spite of the quality, well you are brave...   ... and  please feel free to do so.


    Before the Race


    Got there with about 40 minutes to start time and wandered around getting some pre-start photos.


    My friend, Neil, on the far right, is wearing one of the race shirts from past years.  photo 001_zpso4axbrzh.jpg


    My friends, Mary (left), Loyce, and Gene.  Mary is a phenomenal 'Senior Citizen" runner and is currently on a quest to do a race in every Texas county - of which there are more than 200!

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    My friends, Erik (left), owner of a local company and also "Dragon Tees" which makes some great shirts, including some very nice tech tee shirts; Mark - our MC, who always does a great job at the events he does;  - and Scott, co-owner of local area race company Athlete Guild, which has a great reputation and stays very busy all year long.

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    Our chef, who was busy preparing all our sausage wraps for the post-race festivities.  They were darn good too!

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    One of my co-members of veteran group Team RWB (Red White & Blue) San Antonio and her 'sister'.   That flag she is holding, she carried for the whole 5K route.


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    My fellow veteran and friend, John Purnell, on the right, holding a flag.  He also owns a local race company and puts on several good races during the year, as well as does coaching, training, etc.   John is a really good guy and a Vietnam vet, and may even be a Korean War Vet, WWII vet and WWI Vet...I think the guy has lived about forever....

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    This couple has shirts on from a past April Fools 5K.  I ended up running in the vicinity of this guy for the majority of the course.

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    OK, these crazy guys, lol, ran the whole distance in their speedos.   And they were pretty darn quick too.   I tried to imagine doing that myself and when I saw my image in my own mind of me in a speedo, even I almost went running off screaming in horror  - which is what everyone else around me would do if I ever showed up in that attire.

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    Getting ready to start...


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    Before we started I got this guy; he ran the whole race wearing that head-thingy, pretty impressive, especially in the humidity we had out there.  And he was quick too, he finished way before I did.

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    On the Course


    Ladybird Johnson is a really nice park for a run. It now has trails that are part of the "greenway system' that has been worked on for years, and so this park's trails connect with other parks too, so you can go a long long ways if you want to, all with not having to worry about any motorized vehicles, very nice.  The park also has some off-road natural trails that branch off from the paved trails at various places.  Also, lots of shade trees along the way, which is nice.  We actually did a very short distance along one of the off-road trails as part of the course.  A guy behind me was pushing a double stroller and the trail was pretty narrow, I didn't know if he was going to make it or not.  No worries, that guy did okay - and after we got back on the paved part, he passed me  and off he went PDQ and I never saw him again until the finish.  Speedy baby jogger runner!

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    After the Finish


    It spattered rain on us a bit after the finish, but we had a nice pavilion to get under


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    Yeah, post-race sausage wraps and beer!


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    This is one of my 'running crushes', the lovely Sherri, who was one of the organizers for this event and did her usual great job.  She is actually my veteran friend John's "little sister'    (ok, his daughter)...and she obviously got her mother's looks, thank goodness..


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    Me and the very nice guy that I ran most of the course with

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    More "Happy Finishers", volunteers, supporters, etc.

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    By the time we were all leaving the moon had already come out......and the rain had stopped and some nice pink clouds were up there to end things on a very pleasant note...


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    This event has been put on 3 - or is it 4? - years now and I have done every one of them.  It's normally a smaller event - about 100 participants or so - as it's usually done on a week night and, locally, there are lots of group runs around our area on any given night - but  even small, it's still a lot of fun.  Lots of good comradery, nice course, nice post-race goodies.  Definitely a keeper on the race calendar.  Mucho thanks to all the sponsors, volunteers, AthleteGuild that did the course setup and timing, law enforcement and everyone else who helps make this event happen each year.  Special shout-out to one of my 'running crushes" Sherri Purnell and my fellow old-time veteran, her "big brother' John Purnell who do so much for the San Antonio running community.

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

    Little Blue

      Looks like another fun one, Scotty.  Although I hate to imagine running a 5k-ish race in 83 degrees!  Yeesh, that's hot and humid.  Nice job on being first in the 'old man' A/G.  Did you get a medal from this year, or some other random race?  That's a cute custom.



      MTA:  my friend who walks with me, would scoff at your 'old man' comments.  He's about 10 years older than you, and a whole lot slower.


        A nice race in a lovely park.  It looks so nice and green.  Having the beer at the end was surely welcome - much better than at 9 a.m.