Beginners and Beyond


Report and Photos: Corner Store Country Run/Walk 5K (Read 16 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.


    This was my 58th race of 2015, held on Nov 14th.  The Corner Store used to be the convenience store subsidiary at the local Valero gas stations, but is now its own company, CST Brands - still associated with Valero and still the stores at their stations and other stations too now - after Valero spun it off, and it is doing very well.   They started the Country Run 5K last year - which I also did - and in just the two years it's been held, it has become a very popular local event, done in several cities across North America.  San Antonio race location was the grounds of Freeman Coliseum where the annual San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo is also held in February; and the Coliseum is right next door to the AT&T Center, home of the NBA San Antonio Spurs.  Weather was pretty overcast, with rain threatening - rain never did develop - and a temp of about 60 degrees and pretty low dewpoint and humidity so it was pretty nice.   I heard the MC say there were 10,000 registered for this one.  I thought she might in ALL the cities where the race was held, but after I finished I was chatting with one of the organizers and he told me that they actually did get 10,000 registrations for San Antonio alone, wow!  I don't know if they all showed up - I don't think so - but there sure were a LOT of people there, both runners and walkers.  I made a mistake and got too far behind the start crowd and it took me 3-something minutes to get to the actual start line.  I ended up with a gun time of 36:33 and by my chrono - which I started after I got to the start mat, my 'chip' time was 33:42.   Looking at the results, I was 6th in the runner's 60-69 age group.




    I live fairly close to the AT&T Center/Freeman Coliseum (about 9 miles) and with an 8:30 a.m. start, this let me sleep in a bit, as I'd picked up my race packet the day before.  Got down to the parking area, got parked, and as soon as I got out of the car, I encountered two of my fellow team members from Team RWB (Red White & Blue), a veteran's organization.  So my pre-start  photo taking began with them


    Happy Birthday today to Steve (on the right)...he turned old enough today to drink beer..

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    and then I continued wandering around getting more photos of participants, supporters, volunteers, etc., and some of the stuff near the start area


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    This truck shows all the cities the event is held in

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    This family is wearing the blue shirts that 5K participants got in the goodie bag. Besides the shirt, there was also a cap - worn by the two young lads - and a bandana - worn by the ladies - choice of blue or red


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    "Mom, is that guy finished taking the photo yet?" 

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    OK, now I am...

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    Ms. Texas Sweetheart

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    Two sweethearts...

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    Getting ready to start....yeah, I'm a bit far back...

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    National Anthem sung beautifully by this lovely lady, who was also one of our MCs

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    These two lovely and colorful ladies were in the start crowd near me

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    And these two young fellows were behind me..but not for long...they passed me and left me in the dust, lol.

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    The course was, like most events at Freeman/AT&T through the massive parking lots around the stadiums.  Usually pretty boring courses, but Corner Store really makes the effort to keep things interesting by putting stuff along the course you can take photos of and with; there were also a few musicians out there singing us along as we passed them, and this year the course was changed so we actually went into one of the coliseum tunnels, got to do a lap around the coliseum floor, and then out another tunnel and to the finish.  I liked this course much better than last year's course, so I hope they keep this year's course for the future events.


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    Nice view of Tower of the Americas in downtown San Antonio

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    With about a half mile or so to go, we went up a little incline. When I got to the top, I climbed up on the cement barrier and got a photo of people coming up behind me.....a LOT of people....

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    Got a photo while we did our lap around the floor of the Coliseum

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    And then it was out of the tunnel and to the finish and....done!






    Now, THIS is why people REALLY love doing this event.  Corner Store goes ALL OUT with the goodies!  After you finish, volunteers hand you a very nice bag, you walk into the expo hall..and then proceed to just STUFF your bag with treats. O-M-G, there is a HUGE amount of post-race stuff for this goodies....all kinds of carnival-like games, free hand-outs like frisbies, etc...and I finally found the beer - oh yeah - over in one of the corners.   My bag was so full, I was thinking about hiring a kid I saw with a little red wagon to carry it out to my vehicle for me.  One thing about runners - we LOVE free stuff!  And this event had a ton of free stuff.  If I had seen Kim Lubel (CEO of CST Brands) there, I think I would've given her a big thank-you hug!  


    Inside one of the Expo halls....

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    Grab some stuff!!!


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    Hot dogs...

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    Ahhhh, BEER!

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    Have some fun along with your goodies

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    ...and enjoy some music to boot....


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    And, of course, there were many many many "Happy Finishers", supporters, volunteers, etc.

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    My friend here pushed her young daughter the whole way in her stroller; I think the little lady was the youngest finisher.

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    Me and my Great Legs friend, Sally, who placed in her age group.  Speedy Sally!

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    This is how we old men make ourselves look good...get your photo taken with lovely ladies...

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    Horses scare the crap outta me...but this one was okay.  

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    We're ready for our closeup now, Mr. DeMille...  

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    Thank you for being out there for us, officers!

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    Close-up of the 'blue ribbon' all finishers got.  After I finished I saw a friend and asked him how he did.  He held up the ribbon and said "I medaled!"  lol.


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    Well, this is my 2nd Country Store 5K in a row, so I guess I'm on a streak now, lol, and am going to have to do all of them that come up for as long as I can. It will be tough - you know, with that imaginative course and all that beer, food and fun - but I think I can handle it.    Mucho thanks to all the CST Brands and Corner Store employees involved with the race, and all their volunteers, and law enforcement, Freeman Coliseum and AT&T staff, companies that donated stuff, all the sponsors, etc., everyone involved in making this one happen for we participants.   If you ever get a chance, definitely get this one on your race calendar sometime, I am sure you will not regret it.

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


      Wow! There aren't any tall women like this around here! And pretty, too!

      Little Blue

        Holy cow, is that a big race!  And only the 2nd year?  Dang.


        Was there another distance besides the 5K?  I see a couple of different types of bibs.




          I want one of those inflatable cows.

            I guess word got out about all the goodies, so half the town showed up for the race.  Looks like fun.



              I'll take that big ass boot filled with suds.