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. Ran with Jeremy and Ariel. We did a 2 mile time trial/6:00 pace "till the standard bearer fainteth". I learned a few things from last week and tried to do a better job pacing holding it back in the first 0.5. I also learned Ariel's patterns of losing contact better, and yelled "Da me cinco!" (Give me five) when I sensed he was about to lose contact in the next 5 seconds. In the past I asked him for a low five after he had lost the contact, but that did not work for him. I needed to ask while he was still in contact as a matter of prevention. This would give him an immediate goal to focus on instead of thinking negatively that he could not keep the pace. Right before the end of the first mile, which we did in 6:00 he said he could not go anymore. I told him he was not allowed to quit, and to give me five. He did. He ended up running the second mile in 5:58 for the total of 11:58 for 2 miles. Jeremy pulled ahead in the last quarter and finished in 11:53. So there is a lesson to learn from that. It is possible for the mind to perceive that you are not able to keep the pace any longer and believe that this is true enough to vocally protest at the point when in truth you are able to run twice the distance even speeding up slightly in the second half.

This is not to say that you can think and visualize yourself into running beyond the body's true limit. Your body has a real physical limit on any given day. The only way to raise it is to improve your health, training and recovery. But you will never find out what that limit is if you allow your mind to set limits on your body. Just go until you cannot, and then keep going at the same pace one more step at a time. One more step, one more step. 

After that I ran with the kids. Benjamin did 6, Jenny, Julia, and Joseph 2, Jacob 1, and William 0.3. Total of 13.5 for me. 

Green Crocs 3 Miles: 13.50
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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