What do runners think when they run long distance? Running is hard, running is boring, running is a lonely sport, running can cause you injuries and empty pockets but running is fun, running can keep you away from vices and depressions. 

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Running is a mind game and can help you overcome addiction. Running, in general, can lift up your mood and be good for your health.

I ask fellow runners what they think when they run especially the long-distance or out there training for their next race. If you are a newbie runner or beginner you may not have thought about it or not yet feeling the boredom especially when you have your headphones in your ears listening to music.

But what if you decide you already want to run more than 10k and ready to tackle running half and full marathon or even an ultra. 

If you are new to running check out my article about 10 Good Reasons To Run.

Once you embrace long-distance running there will be so many random thoughts that you can think of while running. Talking to yourself is the real deal, keeping your phone in your hydration backpack or belt bag is necessary.

Imagine being on the road for two hours or more just out there running developing something good for your mind and body. Not everyone can do it because it takes a lot of discipline and dedication to be out there.

It is a mental game, while you already train your body to adapt to running you have to train your mind as well. Instead of thinking of still being in bed on a Saturday morning maybe you should already be out by 6 am and start running.

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Long distance running can help give you a clear mind, answers to questions, problems, or even equations, just kidding! Well, it’s true some runners can think of math and solve problems. 

what do runners think when they run long distance
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What do runners think when they run long distance?


Runners do think about the food they are about to enjoy after running a long distance, especially after race day. Some people also run so that they can enjoy and eat all the food they want and then run again to burn all of it.

In running you can never go back only forward so always look forward to the next meal you want to eat and your next carbo-loading.

Think about rewarding yourself from a long run and finally enjoy a Burrito or a big bowl of pasta and how about that mouth-watering chocolate cake you wanted to try.

For some runners, running for beers is on their list as well. Especially since there are runs that also involve drinking and let’s not forget Oktoberfest.

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Going for a long distance run can help you to reflect on your life and talk to yourself especially when you are facing decision-making tasks. It gives you a clearer view of weighing your decision without the influence of anyone.

Long distance running is your alone time to focus on your goal whether it is just to accomplish the long distance run itself or reflect on something that is bothering you.

Sometimes when you have a bad day try to lace up those running shoes of yours and go for a run to clear your mind and let go of that bad experience, shake it off through running. I read somewhere if you went for a run and never get the answer you have to run again until you get it.

With so many things happening around us, doing a long distance run can keep you focused on what is important and learn something new about yourself. Long distance running is a gift and talent.

Long distance running is also a good way to talk to God.

If you want to run, run a mile. If you want to experience a different life, run a marathon. If you want to talk to God run an ultra. – Dean Karnazes


Sometimes runners really don’t think of anything but just want to enjoy the beauty of nature, running can feel like torture but when you have a spectacular view it’s all worth it.

It’s like a magical moment to be thankful for the gift of running and just enjoy the moment and scenery. The gift of running itself is a blessing being able to do it, experience the fun, and doing something good for your body. 

Like what the old saying being with nature is therapy and add running into it that’s double the fun.

When doing a long run in the mountains be sure to inform your family about it or better have a running body. Ensure safety and proper hydration at all times.


Our family is important to us and some runners keep in mind their families while running, wife, kids, husband, parents all play an important role.

One runner said that he asks for strength from his mom who passed away. While another runner said he thinks of his wife and children.

In Summary

There are many things runners think when they run long distance and it’s all about self-discovery and reflection. It is a humbling experience and in general, long distance running is a test of the human heart and mind.

In the first half just go slowly and listen to your breathing, don’t start too fast so you won’t be exhausted too soon.

Don’t be scared trying to go the distance, remember you don’t have to go fast and far at the same time. You’ll slowly get there once your body has adapted and embraced the pain.

If you have questions about running or looking for motivation let me know your thoughts in the comment section below and join our Facebook group here, Running and Plantbased lifestyle.

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  1. I wish I could start running again, I miss it so much. Unfortunately my knees don’t allow it, but I recognize every you’ve mentioned in this post.

  2. I am by no means a “long distance” runner, but I’m trying to get up to 15 miles by the end of August. I struggle with the last leg because my mind starts saying “I don’t want to do this anymore” and “omg, everything hurts”. Lol! This was insightful!

    1. Thanks Taylor, 15 miles is already a good distance. I feel you about being tired especially on the last stretch but its always mind over matter and also rewarding yourself for a cold drink can help if you are able to continue strong. I would usually tell that to myself. lol

  3. Running gas always been difficult for me mostly because I always start fast thinking I’ll maintain the same pace throughout but this article has just clarified my point you don’t have to start fast while running you’ll get tired
    Thank you for this

    1. Thank you Faith, its easy to start fast but maintaining it takes a lot of hardwork. It’s better to start slow and finish strong. Happy running!

  4. I am not a runner, and definitely will never be a long distance runner, but this post has helped me understand the reasons some of my friends love running so much..thanks for the “insider perspective”

  5. There is always so much to think about on a long run! Some days it’s easier than others to get in the zone but once you’re there it’s so rewarding isn’t it 🙂 Marnie xx

  6. Great post and inspiring on a long run. Love the points you made. I agree it is a lot of mindset to endure long distance running. Thank you for sharing this post
    Pastor Natalie

  7. It was insightful to get a peek into the mind of ling distance runners. A former student is doing well in this field and shared a similar take, especially about enjoying nature.

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