Breaking the Wall

August 05, 2020

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Orem,UT,United States

Member Since:

Jan 27, 1986



Goal Type:

Olympic Trials Qualifier

Running Accomplishments:

Best marathon: 2:23:57 (2007, St. George). Won the Top of Utah Marathon twice (2003,2004). Won the USATF LDR circuit in Utah in 2006.

Draper Days 5 K 15:37 (2004)

Did not know this until June 2012, but it turned out that I've been running with spina bifida occulta in L-4 vertebra my entire life, which explains the odd looking form, struggles with the top end speed, and the poor running economy (cannot break 16:00 in 5 K without pushing the VO2 max past 75).  


Short-Term Running Goals:

Qualify for the US Olympic Trials. With the standard of 2:19 on courses with the elevation drop not exceeding 450 feet this is impossible unless I find an uncanny way to compensate for the L-4 defect with my muscles. But I believe in miracles.

Long-Term Running Goals:

2:08 in the marathon. Become a world-class marathoner. This is impossible unless I find a way to fill the hole in L-4 and make it act healthy either by growing the bone or by inserting something artificial that is as good as the bone without breaking anything important around it. Science does not know how to do that yet, so it will take a miracle. But I believe in miracles.


I was born in 1973. Grew up in Moscow, Russia. Started running in 1984 and so far have never missed more than 3 consecutive days. Joined the LDS Church in 1992, and came to Provo, Utah in 1993 to attend BYU. Served an LDS mission from 1994-96 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Got married soon after I got back. My wife Sarah and I are parents of eleven children: Benjamin, Jenny, Julia, Joseph, Jacob, William, Stephen, Matthew,  Mary,  Bella.  and Leigha. We home school our children.

I am a software engineer/computer programmer/hacker whatever you want to call it, and I am currently working for RedX. Aside from the Fast Running Blog, I have another project to create a device that is a good friend for a fast runner. I called it Fast Running Friend.

Favorite Quote:

...if we are to have faith like Enoch and Elijah we must believe what they believed, know what they knew, and live as they lived.

Elder Bruce R. McConkie


Favorite Blogs:

Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 16.00 Year: 2314.91
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Neon Crocs 3 Lifetime Miles: 1185.83
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff and Josse in 1:22:57. Had some interesting conversations. Discussed potty training since Joseph started his yesterday and was very successful. Then discussed the importance of mothers. A home without a mother is like an ice hockey team without a goalee. Then discussed when it is appropriate to do speed work. I told Josse she should not do any until she breaks 1:26 in a non-aided half in Utah, and that Michelle should not do any until she breaks 1:20. The logic is that both have plenty of natural speed to do it, and if they are not doing it they are being held back by the lack of aerobic endurance rather than the lack of speed.

Crocs - 483.75 miles. The hole on the right shoe is up to about 4mm. It is about under the attachment point of the big toe. Still runnable, I could not even tell there was a hole.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 10:08, 1.5 with Jenny in 13:15, 2 with Benjamin and Jared in 17:12, 0.7 alone in 4:48.

Crocs - 488.95 miles.

Night Sleep Time: 6.75Nap Time: 1.00Total Sleep Time: 7.75
From Adam RW on Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 22:26:17

Sasha, I don't think this is fair. If you are racing in those crocs Saturday you will need to carry some weights. The aid that you will get from the weight difference is just not fair to the rest of us mere mortals, especially now with some of the bottom missing :)

From air dark horse on Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 22:48:29

Interesting analogy on the goalee statement... Anyway, I left you an e-mail on a couple of things. And by the way, are you really going to race in Crocs?

From Walter on Wed, Apr 16, 2008 at 23:24:54

Hey whats up my man!? I wanted to give you a tip I heard from my brother with potty training his boys. He put cheerios in the toilet and told them to try and sink them. It really worked good and since I have all girls all i have to worry about is them falling in the toilet. Keep up the good work buddy! See ya

From Benn on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 11:04:48

I was telling everyone at work about Sasha the Crocs runner, and you've achieved superstardom - borderline superhero status among the local Borders employees. We even spent about an hour designing a whole plot for CrocMan. haha. It'll be sweet if the one guy can design a cartoon sketch of it, because he's a comic book artist and also works for Disney. Have you contacted the company yet? For all you know they could sign you onto the wear and tear test team, and send you free $40.00 Crocs for life! You know, like if you get a million miles on a car sometimes they buy you a new one for free? :)

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Apr 17, 2008 at 13:29:55

While I like running in Crocs, I would not race in them without a pre-arranged compensation because they may slow me done should the race hit a rough spot. I can go normal pace on a smooth surface but my feet are still too tender to go on rough asphalt with small rocks sticking out without caution. I have contacted Crocs, but have not gotten anything except the note that the CSR was forwarding my message to the appropriate person. If I were to sign a deal with Crocs, I would want something more than just a life time supply. I would go for something like $100 cash for every race I win in them + the entry fee covered for every race run in Crocs where I cannot get a comp. If I got a deal like that, my Saturday long runs would always include a 5 K tempo, and sometimes even 2 or 3!

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