Valencia Ibercaja an early season 10km
In 2019 I ran the 10km within the marathon and although I had a poor performance due to an unfortunate paella incident I know the city was flat and fast, with a guarantee of good weather all year round.
Initially I was a bit unsure about whether to enter the event due to it being so early on in the season, but I decided after some persuasion from my training buddy that it would be a good opportunity to see where my fitness was.
Running tourist – flight and hotel choices
Caz and myself both had limited time so decided that we’d fly and spend one night in Valencia.
The Westin is not the cheapest option in Valencia but the rooms are massive, and the spa is amazing.
Runner pre-race activities
The day prior our race bibs were available from a shopping center a couple of miles away. We used this as an opportunity for a shake out run along the central park area.
The central park is a beautiful place to run. The area is flat and the warm sunshine makes it feel like Valencia is the perfect city for runners.
After bib collection we found a quick bite to eat. I tried to keep it light with a salad, and cod croquet this is a great easily digestible meal.
Time for Spa
The Spa at the Westin is the best place to relax and get muscles ready to race. The facilities included;
- Steam room
- Relaxation room
- Salt pool
- Massage treatments
Keep the pre-race meal simple to avoid tummy trouble
After being taught a very big lesson the year prior the pre-race meal at the hotel was very simple.
I selected a pasta pesto dish with a side of sauteed spinach. Following a mostly vegan diet has meant trying to up my iron levels with leafy greens. The meal was tasty, and the service swift and not fussy.
The race day
The day of the race we woke with a porridge pot in the comfort of our hotel room.
2 hours before the start we put on our running kit and went for our warm-up.
To my surprise the start line was pretty much opposite the hotel, this was fantastic because last thing you need in the final seconds before the race is to be frantically trying to find your pen.
Scope out your pen early!
About 10 mins prior to the start we enter our pen and start to soak up the atmosphere.
Pens were crammed, which made it hard to settle into my target pace. After about a mile things started to settle down.
Flat & Fast Course
The course was beyond perfect, the meandering roads were flat and extremely fast.
There was a small incline over a bridge at about the 2.5 mile mark, but the rest of the race was flat/marginally down hill.
The quality of the field was very good, as mentioned previously, there isn’t normally this amount of runners around the 40 minute mark. This meant that there was always someone to cling onto the back off.
Big PB to finish!!
The finish was in the same that we started (right across the road from our hotel). I finished unusually fast and came home with a very surprising personal best of 39.17.
The finishing couple of kms were definitely slightly downhill, which is exactly what you need at the end of a 10km.
Summary of the experience and race
In summary this is definitely a race to add to your calendar if you want to smash your personal best, and enjoy a city perfect for runners.
Tips for your trip: