Breaking the Wall

August 10, 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: 88.07 Year: 2386.98
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: 1257.89
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Big group today. Ran with Jeff, Mary Ann, Daniel, Chauncy, and Matt Anderson. The trail was slippery, so we did not go very fast. We went to Daniel and Chauncy's turnaround (3 miles), then back, then Daniel and Chauncy got off the trail with 0.46 to go, and the rest of us continued. Matt turned off to BYU about a half mile later. Jeff and Mary Ann finished 10 miles with me in 1:21:58.   Then ran with Benjamin and Jenny. Benjamin and I ran 2 miles in 19:49, Jenny ran the first 1.5 with us in 15:42.

Benjamin and I started trigonometry. We are currently working on having him pass the pre-test for BYU Math 112. During breakfast I reminded him about the factorial function, had him play around with the calculator to appreciate how fast it grows, then explained the series for the sine, cosine, and the exponential function. He was excited about the pattern. Then I decided the most natural way to teach him the derivation of the sine and cosine of the sum would be by using the Euler's formula exp(i*x) = cos(x)+i*sin(x), so we went through that decorating the white board in the play room with geek writing.

Afterwards I contemplated how nicely everything happens to work out in the world of numbers. It is not just pretty. Even though math comes from an imagination of man, there appears to be some underlying internal beauty that goes beyond man's ability to create it. How odd. Man invents a set of simple and fairly obvious rules that roughly model the world around him, and then it turns out that  those simple and obvious rules define a  beautiful world with numerous laws of its own that manage to exist in perfect harmony with each other. A mathematician begins to discover those laws rather than create them even though he starts in a world of his own imagination. The fact that this is even possible to me is plain evidence that God created our world. If He had not, math would not work. The patterns would not be there to begin with. And if we were not His children, we would not have been able to spot and abstract those patterns.

P.M. 1 mile with Julia in 10:23.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
From Amber on Tue, Jan 27, 2009 at 10:31:08

Interesting ideas about math, , ,never, never, thought about it that way. Neat that all things really testify there is a God!

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