One of the things I love best about running is the opportunity it gives you to be alone with your thoughts. As a mom of two young boys who do everything out loud and with little concern for safety or tidiness, the hours I spend alone with the sound of my feet hitting the pavement is background music to my ears.

And when you run 50 km all at one time there the sheer volume and randomness of all those thoughts is pretty staggering. To give you a glimpse of what I think about when I think as I’m running, here are 50 thoughts for 50 km…

1. Here we go! Ultra marathon #4…
2. Hey look, it’s a dam (that we’re crossing)
3. Ugh, uphill start on a service road
4. Baker Lake trail, you’re so pretty but dang, my back hurts today
5. Why am I still keeping up with these friends who run way faster than me!?
6. Baker Lake, you’re blushing! The red and orange leaves are amazing!
7. There, that’s better, running with my usual peeps
8. These jugs of water on the ground are an aid station?
9. I miss the quesadillas and noodle soup they had last year…
10. I’m only 10k in and already thinking about the chocolate milk at the finish line 
11. Thank goodness these friends and I always have lots to talk about
12. Fuelling every 30 mins seems to be working well for me today
13. These wooden bridges are so slippery!
14. Look at the views! So pretty!
15. I think it’s time to crack open the red licorice
16. Toadstools! Red with white spots just like in the Smurfs…
17. Oh crap, I’m stuck behind some other runners and lost my friends!
18. Please tell me we’re getting close to the halfway point…
19. Holy crap, here comes Shawn on his way back already!
20. Ouch, something poked my right calf!
21. Aw crap, that wasn’t a poke that was stinging nettles! Ouch!
22. I think we might need to amputate my leg…
23. There’s the photographer, maybe I should jump! Maybe not.
24. Baker River Suspension Bridge
25. This flat stretch to the aid station feels like the longest part of the race…
26. A fresh, dry shirt feels sooooo good in the middle of an ultra marathon
27. I really wish I’d packed a sandwich in my drop bag…
28. Kinda wish I had a partner to help push me up these inclines
29. Oh thank goodness, a long stretch of downhill
30. Baker Lake, your turquoise water is so beautiful!
31. Okay, let’s face it. I’m tired. Maybe I’ll just stick to half marathons from now on…
32. Nah, who am I kidding? 
33. Okay, I need some ibuprofen. Yuck, heart burn.
34. Here’s those toadstools again, better take a pic this time so I can walk for a bit!
35. I’ve been saving this Prima Bar for weeks, now is the time. Yum.
36. I’ve been watching my average pace slow for the past few hours…
37. Running downhill is easier but the impact is really bugging my back today
38. These ferns lining the trail feel like they’re grabbing at my ankles, begging me to stop!
39. What was that noise? There must be an animal stalking me…
40. I’ve barely seen a single person for nearly 10 km!
41. Ouch, my back.
42. Hmm, now the ‘aid station’ is a pile of empty water jugs…
43. Wait, is that someone up ahead of me? I’m not alone anymore!
44. Hmm, starting to come across lots of hikers, I must be getting close to the end
45. Gee, this log bridge feels slipperier the second time around…
46. Surely this is the final incline back to the service road…
47. The road! I’m here! I made it out!
48. Ahh sweet downhill road, I love you.
49. Wait a sec, my Garmin must be wrong. 
50. Holy cow, is that finish clock accurate?? I’m done!

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  1. Kate    

    Love this! Alone time (and peace and quiet) is one of my top reasons for running. I love the chance to be alone with my thoughts. Thanks for the peek into your running thoughts and congrats on the 50k!
    Kate recently posted…Rock ‘n Roll St. Louis training update #2My Profile

    1. slowfastnik    

      Thanks so much Kate! I didn’t quite have all my thoughts together for the full race report but it was easy to spew out some of the randomness that crossed my mind while I was running!

  2. Crystal    

    I think I have more than 50 thoughts (and curses) over the course of 50+ kilometres. Ha ha Great to see I am not alone in the crazy :)
    Crystal recently posted…Watch out it’s rambling WednesdayMy Profile

    1. slowfastnik    

      Oh this definitely isn’t an exhaustive list! There were many more thoughts (and curses too) over that 50k that I chose not to include in my post! Ha ha.

  3. Cassie @ Almost Getting it Together    

    I always have such an obsession with reading ultra recaps and watching documentaries on it… and I TOTALLY agree with this: One of the things I love best about running is the opportunity it gives you to be alone with your thoughts.
    Cassie @ Almost Getting it Together recently posted…Hemp Crusted SalmonMy Profile

    1. slowfastnik    

      Yeah it’s pretty inspiring to read what lengths other people are going to. If you like those kinds of things, I highly recommend Running the Sahara by Ray Zahab – amazing documentary of how he ran across the Sahara desert. Amazing guy. Got any to suggest to me?

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