The Craziest Things I’ve Seen While Running

Hello! How’s it going? You ready for an awesome week?!

This morning I went out for a run and saw something random. It was kinda good though because that distracted me for the rest of my run when I got to thinking about all the weird stuff I’ve seen while running.

crazy things ive seen while running (450x800)

After the run I had my usual breakfast plus a treat. I picked this up a packet of Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut butter yesterday. I’ve been craving it and knew if I bought a whole jar it would be gone in a flash. It works.

justin chocolate nut butter (800x600)

Now on to the crazy stuff I’ve seen on a run…

The Craziest Stuff I’ve Seen While Running

1. Chonies. This is what I saw today. How exactly does one lose their underwear randomly while walking along a paved path in a high traffic area of Orange County??

underwear on a run (600x800)

2. Buffalo. I spotted some buffalo at the start of the Catalina Marathon – which is crazy for around SoCal! I never have seen a deer here let alone a freaking buffalo!

3. The ground, up close. Yeah. I see this a lot. Damn gravity.

the craziest things Ive seen on a run (600x800)

4. A guy riding a unicycle. I feel like it’s extra weird, because it seems so normal and then you realize it’s not a bike but a unicycle and have to do a double take.

double take

5. Fun signs. I spotted this while running in Oxnard for the Strawberry Farm tour. Someone added the “in the name of love” to a STOP sign. How fun is that?!

stop in the name of love (600x800)

6. A guy walking a long with a parrot on his shoulder. I bet this is the same guy I’ve seen at Sonic eating outside with a bird!

7. Manatees in Florida. I have been obsessed with manatees since I was a kid. I finally saw one in December and it made my tiny lil black heart burst with happiness. I also saw dolphins during the Malibu Half Marathon way back in the diz.

calming manatee keep your head up

This post makes me think of this super old running ad about runners…

runners find dead bodies

Question: What is the craziest / coolest  or weirdest thing you’ve seen on a run?


  1. says

    The weirdest thing I’ve ever seen on a run , was about 500 people dressed as gorilla’s. Apparently on the same day and same time as I went to run Town Lake, the Austin Gorilla Run was taking place. I was towards the end of the run and when I came around the corner, there were hundreds of gorilla’s running. I thought it was funny and what I needed at the end of a tough run.

  2. says

    I saw a dead duck … with the nearest water source more than a mile away. It was right in the middle of a residential area. VERY creepy.

    I did see a couple with their parrot at the ice cream stand the other day. I don’t know why you need to bring your bird to get soft-serve.

  3. Shannon B. says

    The one shoe thing always confuses me? I run on paths in mostly residential hoods so not too much odd stuff. I did almost get hit by a duck a few weeks ago and thought of you . Only I saw my duck coming and was able to slow down so she could go by, they don’t ascend very quickly.
    I’m running my first half marathon this Sunday, if you have a little positive vibe you could send my way, I’m a little nervous (already).

  4. Heather says

    there’s a unicycle guy that rides around my ‘hood all the time, sometimes carrying groceries, sometimes a backpack… it’s like he’s commuting on a bike, but… on a unicycle. it’s so bizarre.

    I saw a guy riding a real bike, while playing guitar and singing awhile back. HOW?!

  5. says

    I always look for dead bodies whenever I’m out for a walk or run! I’ve told my husband for years that someday I’ll find one. It’s morbid to think about but you hear about it all the time that I wouldn’t be surprised.

    The weirdest thing that has happened to me while running was two deer came out of nowhere and walked right up to me with no fear. I freaked and jump off the sidewalk and onto the road to get away from them. I don’t think they meant any harm but I’ve heard of attacking deer before so I wasn’t going to take any chances!

  6. Chatelaine says

    I used to run the OC trails east starting from the 5Fwy and sure enough, I saw the naked man running across the trails…… his shirt over his head, no clothes and slapping his thighs to get our attention……

  7. says

    Chonies all the time!! It is so strange! Also Javelinas (a whole pack), tarantulas and desk chairs. Like they must fall out of everyone’s truck while they are moving! Also a lot of kid sandals. Maybe they drop off while they are strolling with mom and dad?

  8. Corrinne says

    Man I can’t think of any good things I have seen except for a condom but I always saw those in college on the streets. My friend caught a couple doing it in the woods on one of her runs though. And am I the only one who looks for dead bodies during my runs and bike rides? Whenever I see a garbage bag or a tarp in a ditch I automatically assume there could be a body in there. Luckily so far no actual bodies have been found.

  9. says

    There is a certain stretch of road in Watertown, MA (where I live and run) that ALWAYS has pieces of clothing and various shoes strewn about. At any one time you can see one or more bras, boots, sneakers, and/or athletic shorts. I have no explanation other than it’s a good place to go when you’re drunk.

  10. says

    I had a favorite running trail near my old apartment that was perfect for a quick 4 miles. When a possum died right on the side of the road and it was never ever cleaned up, my husband and I started referring to a 4 mile run as ‘dead possum and back’ or 8 miles as 2 dead possums, etc . Even though we moved out like 3 years ago, we still use “dead possum” to refer to 4 miles. We’re cool.

  11. Tara says

    I ran up in the Blue Hills last week (near the Reebok HQ, in MA-a little refence point for you)Thick woods, windy , hilly roads and I saw a deer carcass on the side of the road. It was huge and apparently there long enough for the hawks and other things to get to it. It was sad and nasty all at the same time.

  12. says

    One time I was running downtown and this homeless-looking gentleman was sitting at a bus stop and he stood up and like FLUNG his bike at me in a really scary/angry way. I didn’t recognize him so I think he must have thought I was someone else!

  13. says

    We run over the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridge a lot and there’s some wild graffiti…it’s actually quite beautiful….Also “locks of love” where people lock padlocks to the bridge. If you google “locks of love brooklyn bridge” you’ll see tons of pictures.

  14. Steph F. says

    During one of my early a.m. 20 mile training runs last summer, I was all in the zone when I heard a strange dragging noise from behind me. I turn around to see that I am being passed, uphill, by a man who was at least 60 yrs. old running with a huge tractor tire tied by a rope around his waist. I’ve never seen him since and sometimes wonder if it was a GU induced hallucination or something :)

  15. says

    I found a freshly dead squirrel when I was running once. It must have happened in the time I took that loop, because it was on a bike path and ain’t no way I missed it the first time. I even have a picture of it on my phone if anyone wants to take a look at it, haha.

  16. DD says

    I grew up mostly in Central FL – I remember when you could swim with manatees (aka “sea cows”) at Blue Springs. Not anymore though; too many swimmers are stressful for the manatees. They definitely are cool animals.

  17. says

    I love that add! I remember seeing that a few years ago and thinking like H-E-double hockey sticks I’m going running in some backcountry wooded area…and now I do it all the time…

  18. Cathy says

    Let’s see, so many strange things have I seen on my runs but here are the top 5:
    1. A crayfish in the middle of the street (I was near a canal)
    2. A gorgeous man all tousled looking & coming out of the city jail @ 6:00 AM
    3. A drunk woman who was walking down the street & lost @ 5:30 AM. We stopped to try & help her, apparently her date dumped her! She was from a town about 30 minutes away. We directed her to the bus station!
    4. Too many deer to count at our local “wilderness area” (it’s in the middle of town & only a 2.5 mile loop).
    5. A opossum walking down the street with 5-6 babies on her back & she was hissing/growling at us!

  19. says

    I saw the ground up close and personal last weekend, my first run with a new group of people. Hi nice to meet you, I’m a klutz!

    I guess the craziest thing I’ve seen when running is Kodiak bear prints. No running with headphones when the bears are out, you need to keep your wits about you!

    • Alison says

      I’ve seen bear prints too! Not as big as a Kodiak, but still kind of scary. I do not run on that trail anymore – too wooded for me!

  20. says

    I once saw a mattress! Also an older couple was sweeping the sidewalk. Guess the gravel was bothering them! Oh and it’s a part which is not by any houses!

  21. Michelle k. says

    I ran upon a dead body while running along the ocean in Santa Monica early in the morning. I later saw it on the news. Freaked me out to say the least.

  22. says

    I love this thread so much. My favorite thing about getting up early to go running is to get the perspective on what the world looks like while all of the normal people are asleep.

    I’d have to say the strangest thing I’ve ever seen was an ETREMELY muscular bald dude walking a ferret on a leash. I thought it was a small dog from far away, then when I passed them it became abundantly clear that this guy was walking a rodent. I almost fell over from the surprise.

  23. says

    I think the weirdest thing I’ve seen was a girl on a pony being walked along by her sister, both under 15. I live in London and the closest stables is a 20 minute drive away with no forest nearby :/

  24. says

    Yep, I’ve seen a guy on a unicycle on my run before, too. Hills, no less!
    I’ve seen a car covered in troll dolls on a run.
    My mom had a client walk into her tax shop with a monkey on her shoulder last week. A crazy little diaper-wearing monkey!

  25. says

    I’ve seen peacocks, armadillo’s, rabbits, possums, deer, cats, dogs, coyotes and wolves but the best was an Emu! And it was chasing me…..I kid you not.

  26. says

    I haven’t had too many crazy running experiences yet, but my biggest pet peeve is when I see people running (like literally on a jog) in normal clothes. Like jeans. Jeans are not for running!

  27. says

    I saw a HUGE intact dead fish in the middle of the road while running… no water nearby. My assumption is a hawk or eagle dropped it after snatching it from a river.. But still funny and shocking at first

  28. Alison says

    I haven’t seen anything too crazy in quite awhile, except for a deer in the middle of town last November.

    What tops the list for me though, is the escaped psychiatric patient I saw two years ago. Ok, so I’m not 100% sure he was an escaped psychiatric patient, but this is what I saw: an elderly man in scrubs, shuffling down the street in socks, mumbling to himself. Very near an in-patient facility. What other conclusion could I have come to?

    No dead bodies yet. *knock on wood*

  29. Ashlee says

    That sign is totally awesome!! I actually saw a young guy on a unicycle the other day too!! But he was one of those really tall ones.. on a rather busy road where I live.. I was more afraid for him falling over into traffic though instead of the fact he was on one.

  30. Holly says

    The weirdest/scariest thing I saw was a man…completely naked! Quite a shock in my small town. It was still a little dark and only in the 30s outside! Thank goodness I don’t run by myself!

  31. says

    I was just on the last mile of my half marathon trial run and came upon a dad giving his son a horsey ride atop his shoulders. As I got closer, I realized the son was totally giving the full moon. Made me giggle, and then feel terrible for laughing at 3 year old butt, then feel even dirtier for SEEING 3 year old butt.

  32. says

    Wild turkeys roaming people’s lawns early in the morning. I’m pretty close to the city so kind of strange. What’s even crazier though are the people who seem to see me while I’m running and stop their cars to tell me so. Way creepy!

  33. Megan says

    I live in New Hampshire and the most interesting wildlife I have seen besides the normal deer and woodchucks are wild turkeys and porcupines!

  34. says

    I posted this on Facebook but it’s too good(?) not to share again: I saw a used condom in the MIDDLE of the road while running a half marathon once. I don’t even want to know how or why it got there.

  35. says

    I seriously have always had a fear of finding a dead body! I think I much watch too many crime-related reality shows or something.

    I’ve seen a person riding a stand-up paddleboard to which they’d attached wheels, used prophylactics (I’m sure many have), wild turkeys in the middle of the city, a dog who routinely walks himself (literally, I’ve paced him as he’s done a loop around a few blocks then headed back home) and countless odd-duck people wearing all kinds of fun things.

    The view is one of the best things about running!

  36. says

    Love this list! And the ad. I’m a fan of sarcasm. It’s like a second language to me. 😉
    A few weeks ago I was looking for my keys that I lost during a run (had to retrace my steps, but found them in the end!). I had run through trails and a local cemetery. There was a section of the cemetery where it looks like they put the brush from fall raking and I happened upon a condom. In a cemetery. Just…no.

  37. Amanda n says

    You’ve seen some very weird things on your runs! Love that stop sign too! I think the weirdest thing I have seen while running is a couch in the middle of the woods!

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