2023 Race 15, Let’s Roll 5K

Photos are here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/Qzj45xbwVVwc2RLJ8

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Before The Start: My 15th  5K of 2023 was the Let’s Roll 5K held on March 26th at Morgan’s Wonderland in San Antonio.  This was my 2nd 5K of the weekend after doing the Beer Garden 5K in Helotes the day before. Let’s Roll 5K supports Project Mend, which “helps people of all ages living with a disability or other mobility issues.” Project Mend provides refurbished medical equipment to disabled people in need to help them lead better lives. As a person who was born a March of Dimes baby, events that support disabled people are one of my top personal causes when I choose my races to do, along with cancer-related events, as I am also a survivor.  Event start time of 9 a.m., so got to sleep in a bit as I live quite close to Morgan’s Wonderland.  I arrived with about an hour before start time and got a few pre-start photos.

On The Course: Starting and finished in the Morgan’s Wonderland Park, we did a loop around the park’s man-made lake, exiting the park near the park’s Lighthouse. We then proceeded down a road that took us toward Heroes Stadium, a football style stadium of North East Independent School District.  We passed by some vacant lots on our right that used to be youth soccer fields near Morgan’s Wonderland, which are currently undergoing renovation. Our route took us on a road that looped around the stadium and past Morgan Wonderlands recently built facility, the Mobility Assistance Center – The MAC – which also provides services for the disabled.  We then did a small route through the back parking lot of Heroes Stadium – reaching the halfway point here – , coming back onto one of the roads we had come out on.   We then proceeded back to Morgan’s Wonderland the way we had come out. After re-entering the park, we did a loop around the park’s lake in reverse of the way we had come out, finishing up back near the park’s outdoor amphitheater. Even with the 5K the day before – which was quite hilly – I was feeling pretty good, ending up with chip-time of 40:17, 3rd out of 5 in my 60 – 69 males age group. Slowly but surely, finally starting to get my times down since finishing 15 months of prostate cancer treatment in December 2022.

After My Finish:   Water, cool-down walk for about 5 to 10 minutes, and then off to get some post-race photos.  Very nice presentation at the parks outdoor-seating large amphitheater, where the awards ceremony was also done. I was really surprised when they called my name for 3rd in my age group, and was also very humbled when I got a short standing ovation as I received my medal, just about started crying right then. The running community has been so positive and supportive of me with not only all my photo race reports, but also this last personal battle with my second cancer – which was a lot tougher than my first one, which got caught very early – and with my ongoing dealing with the resulting treatment side-effects.  You other survivors know exactly what I am talking about. I  can’t tell you much your support has meant to me and how much it really does help me get through everything. Thank all of you so very very much.

Epilogue:  This is one well-done event put on by Soler Sports.  Lisa Soler and her crew of helpers and Project Mend folks really did a great job with organizing this, doing the course set-up, results, etc. This event had a nice turn-out for a Sunday morning, with 222 finishers; really nice quality race shirt – I got a youth medium and donated mine; I do so many races over the year, I am running out of drawer space, lol; finisher medals for all and a really nice – and large too! – age group award medal.  Morgan’s Wonderland is a very nice venue for a race, with lots of seating, indoor restrooms, lots of cool stuff to see, and the organizers also provided plenty of pre-and-post race goodies, including breakfast tacos, water, Gatorade, and much more. Mucho thanks to Soler Sports, which also was the organizer for the Helotes 5K and then did this one too the very next day. Lisa Soler and her crew rock! Thanks to  top-notch race management company iaap who did their usual great job of course setup, timing, results; to Morgan’s Wonderland for their hospitality – and race participants got to stay in the park for a visit post-race if they wanted to – and to all the many many volunteers and sponsors that made this one happen for we participants. Also, thanks to the police officers who were there for our safety; and to anyone else involved I may not have mentioned here.  Thank you all so much!  Next up for me is the April Fools 5K on April 1st   at 5 pm in McAllister Park; , my 3rd Soler Sports event in a row. I better watch out, Lisa might make the company dog mascot, lol.  Happy running, walking, or whatever your choice of exercise is, and may we all have good results and all stay safe.  See you on the roads!

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