Breaking the Wall

November 17, 2019

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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: 118.81 Year: 3380.28
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1576.28
Neon Crocs 1 Lifetime Miles: 33.72
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. 10.1 with Jeff in 1:17:40. We actually did not start out too slow, and caught the 8:00 guy within 2 miles. But then we did not go any faster except for my explosions and the mile that was supposed to be fat. Only half of it was. Jeff with bikers is like a dog with cats. He has the instinct, he absolutely cannot control it. So we start out our fat mile like we were supposed too, maybe a little quick, but acceptable - 85, 86 nicely on pace for 5:41. And then up ahead just like last week we see that same guy on a tricycle. So Jeff's horses start neighing and we do a 200 in 41. Then they start neighing louder and we run the next 200 in 37 and blow by the tricycle. And then Jeff cannot slow down, so we run the next quarter in 77 - 5:26 for the mile. Very nice, 5:04 pace for the last 600.  I think I heard Jeff barking - ruff, ruff, ruff, ruff as we chased the guy :-)

Then we ran 2 more with Benjamin in 15:58. I gave him a challenge to catch the 8:00 guy in the last quarter with about 350 to go, and he successfully met it in spite of grumbing for about 50 meters - last quarter in 93. So we got some more running at marathon race pace.

Then did one leg sprints. 64 feet. right - 6.2, left 6.5, right - 6.1, left 6.4, right - 5.9, left 6.3. Good to see the gap is reducing.

Then 2 with Jenny in 19:36, Julia ran the first 1.5 in 14:50.

On the positive side of things my left Five Finger is starting to develop a hole in the sole. That is a good sign because it is not as far behind the right hole as it was in the other pair. So it appears the stride is becoming more balanced, even though I still wear out the right one quicker than the left.

P.M. 0.5 with Joseph in 5:22.

Five Fingers 2 Miles: 12.10Bare Feet Miles: 2.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Eric Day on Tue, Jul 28, 2009 at 10:48:51 from

Sasha, finally did the test run you suggested, please take a look at results in today posting in my blog. Thanks ! Looking forward to your comments.

From Jon on Tue, Jul 28, 2009 at 15:27:38 from

I think you are the only person I know who thinks getting holes in shoes is good so you can analyze your stride based on it... :)

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