Glenn Roeder ordered him to push up in the closing stages of the game at the Reebok as the Hammers chased an equaliser, but Hayden admits he got a taste of his own medicine.
"I wouldn't want to be a striker; people come through the back of you and I got clattered a couple of times - it is definitely not a position for me!"
Hayden is ruled out of action this weekend though Tomas Repka is back from suspension and takes his place.
Says physio Simon Webster:
"Foxey has got patella tendonitis and unfortunately that is going to take time to settle down so I don't think he is going to be available for Saturday."
And a disappointed Hayden confirms:
"I have got a bit of tendonitis and I won't be involved at the weekend; I pulled up sore after training on Monday and need a few days' rest."
But he was delighted to start at Bolton and adds:
"Nothing beats playing, I have always said that, and even though we lost it was good to be out there.
"Bolton put a bit of pressure on us early on, then we dominated, especially in the second half, but we couldn't break them down."
He handled England new boy Michael Ricketts comfortably and adds:
"They very rarely got into our penalty box really, but I would have rather they'd have been flying and we won 1-0 than them not so good and us losing 1-0.
"We were livid after the game because we really thought we deserved it; we ran, we chased, we tackled, the only thing we couldn't do is put the ball in the back of the net.
"It has been very frustrating for me; I hadn't played for three months but I didn't look out of sorts, and that is what you have to do.
"If you get an opportunity you must be able to do a job and not look way out of place; I have been training well and if I hadn't been working hard it would have showed, but I was happy with the performance."
Hayden has not heard any more about the FA charge he is on following a clash with Barry Hayles in the Fulham game in September, for which both players were booked.
The pair have both appealed but Hayden admits:
"I haven't heard anything about it; the club is handling that.
"I really don't know what is happening but I think it is quite ridiculous what the charge was and hopefully it will fade away."