Vegan ultrarunner masters the mountains to win

| 10 June 2024
minute reading time
Alberto Pelaez Serrano

Alberto Pelaez Serrano wins Los 10,000 del Soplao for the second year in a row.

Alberto Pelaez Serrano is a Spanish endurance athlete with a mountain of medals to his name. His accomplishments include winning the 100 km Rincon de la Vieja in Costa Rica in 2018, the 65 km at the TransGranCanaria ultra (age group), the 57 km Rioja Trail ultra and the 75 km Los 10,000 del Soplao in Cantabria in 2023.

In May of 2024, Alberto returned to Los 10,000 del Soplao to take on the mountains once more. And just as he did the previous year, he stormed ahead to take first place and prove that 2023 was no fluke. Alberto crossed the line in 8 hours, 42 minutes and 47 seconds, beating his previous time by just 50 seconds. He was over half an hour ahead of second place, Javier Blanco Garcia, and it was another 2 hours and a half hours until the second placed runner in Alberto’s category came in. His convincing second win at Los 10,000 del Soplao gave him his 18th ultramarathon victory.

The 46 mile race rose to a mountainous 3,600 metres of height gain and is suitable only for the fittest and most determined of runners. Over 200 runners started the epic through the Cantabria mountains but rain and mud, soaring hills and technical trails got the better of most of them.

In 2008, Alberto turned vegetarian and in 2011 he became vegan:

“Everything changed after visiting a small town in China as I witnessed the dog meat trade and how the animals were treated. From that moment, I realised that what I was doing in consuming other animals was exactly the same as what was occurring to the dogs in that place.”

During the race, Alberto used his commitment to veganism to carry him through the tough times:

“When I had a bad time during the race I thought that my suffering was nothing like what animals suffer every day in farms, slaughterhouses and laboratories” he told Great Vegan Athletes. “If I endured my little suffering and reached the finish line, I could show the message of I Don’t Eat Animals on my t-shirt and indirectly help those animals by helping to raise awareness.”

Alberto is just one of many endurance athletes who have uncovered the power of a vegan diet to fuel extraordinary feats and has also written a book called No Como Animales (I Don’t Eat Animals), which tells the story of his incredible rise to elite status as a runner.


Content sourced and adapted with permission from Great Vegan Athletes.

About the author
Nicholas Hallows
Nicholas has been vegan since the early 2000s and worked for Viva! between 2017 and 2020 as a Senior Administrator and Web Content Assistant. He is a qualified teacher, specialising in Language and Literacy, and an accredited Proofreader and Editor. He is now a freelance writer covering topics including veganism, mindfulness and minimalism.

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