The things my brain thinks of during long runs

Yesterday morning I was up bright and early to get in my 8 mile long run. Unfortunately, it was one of those days where it was already 80 degrees by 7 AM and very humid (97%). But despite the heat I had a pretty enjoyable run. It’s always nice to run someplace different from your usual stomping grounds.

I started out with a mile around the campground and then headed out onto Kings Road, the main road our campground is off of. I went down that road for a bit and then headed down to a little “beach town” area with condos, small shops, and a few hotels.


A little over halfway I needed to use the bathroom and lo and behold I found a public beach entrance and it had restrooms and a sink! It was great timing. I also tried out some new fuel halfway- a tri-berry flavored Gu. The flavor was just okay and I need to get used to how thick the Gu gels are (I practically have to chew them to get them down), but it sat well in my stomach.


Once I left the beach town area I continued to head down Kings Road until it dead ends. First I turned right, but the road was closed. This was about 5 miles into my run and my running-brain decided the road was closed for one of three reasons. One, there’s a giant sink hole and I would fall into it if I ran down the road; Two, the two large houses along the road got it turned to a private road and the owners sit on their porches and will shoot me with long range rifles if I run down their road; And three, there’s a loose tiger but only on that specific section of the road. These are the things my brain thinks up when I’m running.


I decided none of those three possibilities were good, so instead I headed in the other direction. And guess what I found? Hills! It turns out there are hills at the beach. You just have to know where to go.


I was having a pretty enjoyable run up until the last 2 miles. Just after I hit mile 6, my right heel started to bother me right at the front part that connects to the arch of my foot. My heel has been bothering me since Wednesday and I’m pretty sure it’s from walking barefoot and/or in flip flops during the day. Thus far it hadn’t bothered me during a run, but after a little over an hour of running it started hurting. It wasn’t really bad, though, so I continued on. The other thing that made the last 2 miles of my run challenging was the pounding headache that crept in at mile 6.5. My head was absolutely throbbing, but just on back right-side. I was drinking water throughout my run, but I guess I hadn’t had enough. All I could do was to keep going.

When I got back to the campground and finished my run I drank an entire bottle of water, took two Excedrin, and drank a whole bottle of PowerAde. That helped a bit, but for most of the rest of the day my head would start throbbing anytime I moved. My dad fixed pancakes, bacon, and eggs for breakfast. This was our first time eating eggs from our chickens! And guess what?? The very first one my dad cracked open was a double yolk. I believe that means we will all have good luck for the rest of our lives.
I spent the day on the beach reading, despite my headache that throbbed anytime I moved, but I stayed in the shade under my umbrella and continued to drink a lot of water. By the evening I finally started feeling better. After 5 PM you can take dogs on the beach so Barry and I took Hank and Scout out to the ocean. Hank absolutely loves prancing through the waves but we found out today Scout is not a big fan. After a wave crashed on her she refused to even put her paws in the shallow part of the water.
Hank playing in the waves
Scout did enjoy being out on the beach and watching Hank frolic, at least.

I’m happy here just watching, thanks.
Have you ever gotten a pounding headache during your run? How do you deal with them? Any ideas what the cause could be?

Does your brain think up random and ridiculous thoughts like mine while you’re out on a run?

I think mine does it to entertain me (those that run with me also get entertained, since I usually share my random thoughts with those lucky people)
If you have a dog, have you ever taken it on the beach? Did your dog like the ocean?

11 thoughts on “The things my brain thinks of during long runs”

  1. We see so many dogs in the ocean here. While running earlier this week, I watched a dog that I could tell desperately wanted to go in, but was afraid. It was so cute running up to the water, hesitating, running back, etc. all the while looking longingly at it’s owner and other dogs in the water. Yes, I agree, the double yoke means good luck for the rest of your lives! Good job Agnes, or whomever laid that egg!!!

    1. Aw that sounds so cute and funny! Scout kind of had the same mental battle going on between wanting to go with Hank but being afraid of the waves. We will give the credit to Agnes, since she’s my favorite chicken! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I’m betting on the tiger. I get headaches sometimes when I run, but I think it’s probably always due to dehydration. Not necessarily that I don’t drink enough on my run, but that I don’t drink enough in the day before my run. We took Indy to the beach last summer and he LOVED it. I don’t think he even paid any attention to the waves..I just threw his ball as far into the ocean as I could and he just pounced right in after it. Both of my sister’s dogs don’t like the waves, though.

    1. Definitely tiger. I would have loved to watch Indy chasing the ball into the ocean. Dogs that play fetch like that always look like they are having an absolute blast.

  3. That picture of Hank is hilarious. I’m sure he loved it, but for some reason, to me he does NOT look into it in that picture. My dog’s never been to the beach, but I think she’d flip out about it. She loves running in shallow water, but I don’t think I’ll ever get her to swim.My mind’s weird when I’m running. Usually, I’m just singing a song in my head (even if I don’t have music with me), or I’m, like, thinking about life. When I run with other people (which hasn’t happened in ages), I’m a total weirdo, though.I’m fortunate in that I rarely get headaches. I wouldn’t want to run with one, though!

    1. Haha I assure you he does love it and willingly runs out into the waves (although I do think they freak him out a bit when they crash right on him). Lucky for you most runners are weirdo’s, so anyone you run with would probably appreciate all of the weirdo things you had to say.

  4. I sometimes get really bad headaches after a long, hot run. I guess I’m lucky that they never start while I’m running.My brain goes all over the place during a long run.

    1. Unsolicited advice here – but this is *exactly* the issue that I had – and was able to resolve with electrolytes. My hydration was good, but a few hours after the run (in the summer in NY, then all the time when I moved to Singapore), I’d get a smashing headache that wouldn’t quit and seemed immune to pain killers. I thought my hydration was sufficient – and it was. But I was sweating out more salt than my sports beans were replacing. I starting taking salt tabs, and I haven’t had this problem in MONTHS. Salt tabs take a bit of work to get right (enough, but not too much) – but I highly recommend you give them a shot. On the recommendation of some endurance athlete friends, I use S-Caps (can buy on Amazon). Good luck!

  5. Headache – especially a persistent one – would probably either be dehydration or electrolyte issues. You mentioned not drinking much the day before, so could be dehydration. But when it’s super hot/humid/sweaty out (like you describe), even if you drink enough, you might not have enough ‘lytes. An electrolyte imbalance issue is the most likely cause of a post-run dehydration headache for me.

    1. I’m leaning towards dehydration since I have been really bad about drinking water while on the beach this week. I usually don’t get headaches like that during or after long runs. If it happens again I may mix in some PowerAde with my water. I used to do that for all of my long runs.

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