Another week, another race! When I registered for this race back in January, I hoped I’d be running more regularly by now. And I am! I knew almost nothing going into this race, and was just looking for something in the area to add to my calendar.
During race week, I attended 1 adidas Runners speed workout, semi-attempted a speed workout on my own (I say “semi-attempted” because I took breaks), and did an easy run the day before. At the AR workout, one of the coaches mentioned that this is a challenging course, so runners shouldn’t attempt a PR. Good to know!
background about ra’anana
Here is what I know about Ra’anana, without doing any Googling:
Near Tel Aviv
Has a big absorption center for new Olim
Has a large Anglo (native English-speaking) community
That’s it! In my head, Ra’anana is a nice suburb of Tel Aviv.
Price: 100 shekel/$27.60. On par with other races of similar distances. Value for money: B+
Website: All in Hebrew, but it had all of the info I needed…except for road closures Website: B-
Publicity: The race was advertised by Shvoong, which is basically the Runners World of Israel. Now that I also follow Shvoong on Facebook, I also saw the info there. Publicity: B…I knew where to look, so I found the info with ease
Transportation to race: Bus! I live in the north-center part of the city, near a major landmark, so even though the race was held in another city, there was a bus not far from my apartment that normally goes straight to the park where the start/finish line is located. I say “normally” because there were road closures that weren’t listed anywhere on the race site. Luckily, the bus driver told me it was the end of the line, and it was only a 15 minute or so walk to the start…and I had plenty of time.
The way back was trickier. There were still road closures, so after waiting a little, I walked back to where I was dropped off earlier in the morning…only to find that my bus card apparently didn’t work. I have a monthly pass for Tel Aviv/the region, and apparently Ra’anana wasn’t included. I got off at the next stop, and decided that if the next bus I found didn’t take me, I’d use my debit card to withdraw cash at an ATM, and figure it out. My card worked on a bus from a different route, which dropped me off not far from my apartment. Transportation: C…it worked, but instead of a 40-50 minute commute home, it took an hour and 40 minutes…
Weather: mid-high 50s and sunny!
Start time: 8:30am. This meant I was up before 6am, made coffee and was out the door by 6:40am. I didn’t want to take chances, since I was depending on the bus and I didn’t know where the road closures would be. I arrived around 8am and by 8:15am I had picked up my bib, dropped my gear at the bag check, and was in a short port o potty line. While I would have loved to sleep in more, but given the weather, I guess I’m glad I started before it got too sunny/hot.
Start/finish area: In Park Ra’anana…it was nice, nothing special.
Packet pick-up: Held in Park Ra’anana, right by the start area. Usually before a race I receive a text message with my bib number. This time I didn’t, so I went to the info table, where a woman directed me to a fence, where the race numbers were listed, according to the runners’ last names. After that, it was a breeze to get my bib and shirt.
Race shirt: Not only did they have women’s sizes, but the shirt is a pretty blue color! I’ll definitely be wearing this in the future. Shirt: A…I can’t wait to wear it on my next run!
shown against my red couch, for maximum contrast
What I wore: adidas Runners shirt, compression shorts. I wish I’d brought a hat or sunglasses…oh well.
Bag drop: I specifically looked for this on the website, because I wanted to wear a sweatshirt on the way to the race. Sure enough, it said there was a bag drop! It was easy to find, and the process was very smooth and organized. I used the bag I received at the Eilat Night Run, which was perfect, because the eye-searing neon yellow was impossible to miss, and I was the only one with the bag, so picking it up after the race was a breeze. Bag drop: A+
Course: As I said, one of the adidas Runners coaches said that the course was tough and to not attempt a PR. Good thing I’m not in PR shape! There were rolling hills throughout the course, but it certainly wasn’t a nightmare. As I suspected, the course was very suburban. It was pretty, but not too interesting. This reminded me a bit of the Givatayim 10K that I ran back in October. According to my Garmin, I ran the 10K in 1:02:24, which is an average of 6:11min/km. For the most part, I tried to run at a comfortable pace and push myself a bit on the hills. My fastest km was the last one, where the course was relatively flat, so I was able to finish strong. Course: B- because it’s not that interesting
Water stations: There were three, I only stopped at the second one.
Bathrooms: There were enough port o potties in the start/finish area, but none on the course. At the beginning, I had to pee, and since there was nowhere to go, I skipped the water stations… Bathrooms: F
Medal: The race site said runners received a medal, but I couldn’t find pictures from previous years. When I received mine, I was impressed. Medal: A
the middle spins!
The Ra’anana 10K was a good race, but the public transportation snafu was annoying. In the future, I’ll make sure to take cash with me when I travel to races that aren’t in/adjacent to Tel Aviv. This is a nice local race that I can see myself running many times in the future. 🙂