Leaded or Unleaded

And the long run headaches are back.

I drink plenty of water so it’s not a lack of hydration.    Granted I am prone to headaches and migraines so there is that.   I am still loving the Ultima for shorter runs but I am wondering if my issue with longer runs is a lack of calories.  I still fuel horribly…as in I don’t.   I just can’t eat on my longer runs.  I buy gels and gu’s and chews and never eat them.  I carry them with me but they just end looking very beat up and expired.  So maybe my water needs to gain some weight?

With that in mind, it was time to experiment.  So I hit up The Feed.

#1  Gen Ucan Orange-   I heard great things and I really liked their protein powder so I was hopeful.   Out of the package, it mixed chalkier than I had expected.   It kind of seemed like it didn’t dissolve.  It didn’t taste powdery it just looked like that.  It actually had very little taste.   Very bland.    Taste aside, I had a surprisingly great 8 mile run.   I ran a hill I have never run in its entirety before.  I even posted about it on Instagram.  My mother made fun of me.   My post run headache was very muted.

#2- Glukos Orange-  Mixed and dissolved well and was very orange in color.  It also tasted very yummy.    That said, I slammed into a wall at mile 6 of a 9 mile run.    I felt ok leading up to that point and then things went very south.    It was the same route as before and at first I thought to blame it on the French toast that I had for breakfast but again that was the same as before too.    And I had a headache.

#3 Tailwind Raspberry Buzz- Caffeine!!!!    I was heading out for what I thought I was going to be a shortened long run because I wasn’t feeling it so I admit I only mixed 1/2 the pouch.    It blended well but oh man, it tasted like medicine.  I wasn’t a huge fan of the taste but a I went from not wanting to run at all to bartering with myself to just run 4 to actually running a solid 8 miler that day.  Hmmmm.   I do like that it has caffeine in it.   I feel like my asthma cranky lungs appreciate it sometimes.  I had a medium headache.

I am still cycling through these options.  I bought multiples so I could try each one on multiple runs in hopes of finding the golden ticket.    But a new contender has entered the ring too.

Thanks to Bibrave, I get to try the Beachbody Performance line.  I’ve heard great things about their Hydrate product so yay!    One of these has to solve the long run headaches, right?

How do you hydrate?




27 Comments on “Leaded or Unleaded

  1. I used to get horrible headaches after my long runs. It was awful. I eventually figured out it was my sodium levels. Now I take a salt tab before I run and during (depending on how many miles) then eat food with salt in it afterward. No headaches anymore!! It is wonderful!
    I also switched to Huma last year for fueling. It is amazing. I also just recently tried Sword. So far it has done its job. I am not a big fan of liquids while running and this has been pretty good.


    • Same here. I used to always get bad headaches after long runs, then one day I ate a big salty bowl of ramen noodles right after a run and I felt great the rest of the day. Ever since then I’ve tried to make sure I get enough sodium

      Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve never tried eating something salty post run, that’s an interesting idea. I wouldn’t think I have a sodium problem as I am kind of a salt fiend but maybe I do?


    • Sodium could be a problem. If adding calories doesn’t help, that’s where I’m going next. I’ve heard of Huma but never tried them. I admit I would rather drink my calories than eat them while running. Which is better than I used to be. I wouldn’t eat anything and rarely drank enough!


  2. I am not great at fuelling either. I have been trying gels the last few long runs and have had a different outcome each time and cant think what else I done differently! I hope you get the headaches sorted, my run last night actually helped my migraine.


    • That’s the odd thing- running shorter runs do help my migraines. Long runs give me them these days. It’s a newer thing, only the last few months so I know there has to be some fix. I just need to figure it out!


  3. I feel your pain. I don’t get headaches but I get sick on runs. I throw up a bunch, gross. I have a pretty weak stomach already, so gels and other running fuel usually end up making me sick. Even if I am not running. If I don’t get sick, the amount of sugar I take in usually ends up giving be some other tummy issues later in the day. I was given some glukos samples from my local running store to try. I also am looking forward to trying Vegas, hopefully the more natural food based product sits well.

    Considering the length of your runs, Im not sure fueling is the main issue causing headaches. Could you me missing other items from your diet? Possible over hydration, causing you sodium balance to be off?

    Hope you find something soon! Happy running.


    • I know that I haven’t really even hit real long runs yet, I’m still more around mid-length but the headaches seem to come at anything over 5 these days. As for something missing from my diet, that’s entirely possible as I have a GI disorder and always have some sort of restrictions to follow or fail. But that’s also nothing new and the headaches have really only been the last 6 months or so.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I still get headaches after longer runs occasionally but I’ve found that whenever it happens it’s because I didn’t eat/fuel properly the day before.


  5. I always get up and drink a bottle of water as I’m getting dressed to go run, but if I’m going to be running longer than 30 min/3 mile range, then I eat half of a protein bar, too. (I literally keep the box in my closet and just break off half a bar and take small bites as I get dressed) I have been watching my numbers and my protein was way lower than it should be for the amount of activity I was doing, and being vegetarian, it is just easier to supplement on run days. That helped my headaches and nausea. I did just buy some pre-workout and new protein powders – I looked into Beach Body, but yeah, the cost was outside my budget, so you enjoy and report back!


    • It’s a tricky rope walk. If I run in the morning, I eat nothing and end feeling rough. If I run in the afternoons, I have to think about my lunch and how much time I might have to digest things with my stupid stomach otherwise things will be rough for another reason. I hope I like it but I also realize it will cost me more than I have been spending. But the headaches have to stop. We’ll see!


  6. I’ve tried UCan, Tailwind, and Nuun and liked all but I keep going back to GU. I just like squeezing it in and moving right along. I’ve mastered it, LOL!!! It’s not tasty but I need it to be a bit gross for me to think it’s working (like medicine, jaja!!). If it’s too yummy, then I just think it’s candy–like Honey stinger chews, those are too tasty!


    • Haha, I’ve never intentionally thought of it like medicine. I just have troubles with the consistency of the Gu’s and Gel’s. I do like the Honey Stinger chews, I just never remember to actually eat them! I ran my entire marathon on less than one packet last year.


  7. I use a combo of s-caps which are a mix of sodium, magnesium, and potassium making them easy to digest and they seem to help digest the gels too. I’m also testing the beachbody so looking forward to trying something new too…best of luck!


      • I am really liking the Beachbody…need to get a shoutout on the blog sometime soon but still trying to figure out my appropriate twitter postings for promotion and trying to build up on Instagram…I was a very late adopter of IG. But, overall I do like the Beachbody…I have a huge training month in March so it was nice they gave us an extra couple weeks of testing. Have you got to use it much yet?


        • I’ve used it on one long run but none of the recovery products yet. I am glad we have a longer time frame now. Last week was a little abbreviated when it came to training so I am looking forward to more tests this week.

          Liked by 1 person

          • yep, me too…my volumes are really going up over the next few weeks…i am liking the hydrate and recovery but haven’t tested recharge yet…also as a BRP rookie, getting the hang of the promotion part of everything!


  8. Unrelated/related- Lately I have been getting constant headaches. Today I was practicing yoga and I was in childs pose and she suggested rocking your forehead gently back and forth on the mat. She even stated it’s helpful for headaches. It was instant relief and so peaceful!!!! Not that you can do this on a run, but for a time you’re taking it easy 🙂


    • I’ve tried that position before to relieve sinus pressure but not very often. I have trouble in childs pose. I feel like a ton of pressure builds up and all centers in my jaw area? I can’t figure it out.


      • That’s such a bummer- I LOVE childs pose, especially when running because of the gentle pull in the hamstrings. Since I’m no yoga teacher or anatomy expert, I won’t even pretend to understand the pressure you are experiencing. I guarantee one of those people would have an amazing explanation for you. I’m always so amazed when I’m taking yoga and I’m taught how connected all of the parts of our body are.

        Liked by 1 person

  9. I’ll just chime in to represent the train-low-race-high philosophy. I learned from a sports nutritionist several years ago that zero fueling can create certain favorable adaptations for distance runners, so I decided to give it a try, and it’s definitely worked really well for me. (I do gels every 3 miles during races.) BUT of course that doesn’t mean it will work (or be pleasant) for everyone, and low blood sugar headaches are a thing, so hopefully you will find what works best for you.


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