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Marathon training & Headaches

So, I’m training for my first marathon and doing mostly raw vegan (sushi/raw fish, raw goat’s milk cheese, and beer are things I include occasionally) for the first time also. I’ve been eating raw since I started training and since I’ve been doing training runs over 8 miles (we did 14 last weekend), about 3-4 hours after my run a headache starts to build and it steadily gets worse and lasts for 10-30 hours (despite natural & homeopathic remedies, and even, when it gets really bad, advil). Although I’ve gotten migraines before, these headaches don’t have the visual weirdness and nausea I normally get with migraines, though I do get a little light/sound sensitive with these ones.

I’ve checked my hydration during runs and I’m doing fine—I drank about 32 ounces of water and 12 ounces of coconut water this last long run and ate about 3 tablespoons of my home made goo (almond butter, dates, banana, sea salt).

I eat heavy-ish (w/o stuffing myself, of course!) two days before the long runs (larger than normal green smoothie, lots of fruit, avo & a bit more nuts & seeds or nut/seed based foods) and I eat normally the day before. I eat whenever I get hungry after I run (this weekend that was about every hour!).

Possible contributing factors I’m considering: 1) Not getting enough sleep before or after runs (answer: more sleep! Easier said than done, but perhaps this is the simplest solution?) 2) Possible vertebrae misalignment (answer: chiropracter?) 3) (I hate considering this one) Eating mostly raw (I don’t want to change this, but have to look at it, I think.)

Does anyone have experience/advice with eating raw, marathon training, and headaches?



  • bittbitt Raw Starter

    I was having bad headaches after running and my hydrotherapist mentioned that I could be drinking water but it’s not absorbing. He recommended electrolytes added to your water. It will make it taste a little salty, but it really hydrates you. It’s called E-lyte.


    good luck!

  • Thanks, bitt, I’ll go investigate that…

  • chicorychicory Raw Newbie

    I get terrible throbbing migraines when running also, about 10 minutes in. plus that weird coppery taste in the mouth. my neurologist said that many people can get migraines without the halo, others only get the halo with no headache, (weird!) and that if I take an anti inflammatory before running this would prevent it, and it works! Although, if you are anti OTC’s, you could try foods that naturally do this.

  • lzhptlzhpt Raw Newbie

    Oh poor thing! What one are you running? I ran the PF Chang Rock ‘n Roll Arizona Marathon. I remember just getting into those longer runs and learning all my body’s signals, but you’re doing everything right! I can’t figure the problem, though i stayed more raw than not. What are you eating after your run? Are you hydrating first after the run until your urine is clear? usually: headache and muscle cramps=water! A curb seems like a mountain and other feelings of weakness= food (I took 2-3 dates around the 16 mile mark) Complete disorientation and seeing purple people (no kidding) = salt I did take coconut water with me on those long runs like you are doing. Watch out for hyperhydrosis and take in sea salt before this next run. You want to start doing that now so you know how much works for you. Too much will make you vomit.

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