Breaking the Wall

July 09, 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: 51.55 Year: 2011.51
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: 881.43
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Today was a historic day. My 12 year old son Benjamin was able to keep up with me through one of my intervals setting a PR of 71.9 for a quarter. I did my regular 12 miles with 5x400 in the middle with full rest. The splits were 75.3 (up), 72.7 (down), 74.7 (up), 72.3 (even roll), 71.4 (down). I like the very unscientific rule of 2:1 adversity ratio. If you run down or with tailwind 3 seconds faster that the other way, then if we made it flat/windless, you would run 1 second slower than aided, and 2 seconds faster than counter-aided, if the difference is 6 seconds, then it would be 2 seconds slower than aided/4 seconds faster than counter-aided. This unscientific rule, nevertheless, is more scientific than the 220 - age for determining your max heart rate. Using this rule for normal amounts of adversity (excluding grades over 10% and wind over 30 mph) you could be a few seconds per mile off, but you will never end up with something as  ridiculous as making a healthy 30 year old man in the top shape of his life over 50 years old. 

So in any case, the unscientific adversity rule says that Benjamin's 71.9 was equivalent to 72.9 on the track. I was very pleased to see him right by my side at those speeds for that long. He also did it towards the end of his 3 miles mid-run without stopping to drop his HR before the start, which helps a lot for the quarter, especially if you are only 12.

I was happy with how the workout went for me as well. It accomplished its purpose, which is to learn to keep pushing when HR gets up to a certain critical range where the natural response is to slow down.

Jenny and Julia did 2, Joseph 1, and Jacob 0.5.

Gold Crocs 2 Miles: 12.00
Night Sleep Time: 8.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 8.00
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