Breaking the Wall

August 06, 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

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2016-03-24 07:29:14
Workout Totals: Distance14.567Time1:56:56.30Pace8:01.66
Today Benjamin ran an 800 time trial in 2:04.3 - new PR finally after two weeks of work. He improved his old PR by 1 second. What I found encouraging is that only two weeks ago he was running only 2:10.3. We will see how much more 800 speed he can develop in the next couple of weeks, and then refocus on the 5 K. I did the last 400 of his time trial and got dropped at the 600 meter mark.

His splits were 29.9, 30.6, 32.5, 31.3. I was encouraged by him being able to shift gears in the last 200 meters in spite of a fast start. So now we just need to work more on the confidence from 400 to 600. Hopefully 600 - 400 - 200 workout can help him.

Joseph also did a time trial and got a small PR running 2:39.0. This was still slow enough for me to be able to pace, but fast enough that I could not talk much. His splits were 37.7, 41.0, 39.7, 40.6. Jacob tried as well, but missed his PR by a second running 2:44.1 (37.6, 42.7, 43.0, 40.8). I paced him also.

William also ran an 800 and got a track PR of 3:13.7 (although his old PR was weak, and he has run 3:08 in the canyon). But today was a low-motivation day for him, and this had to be the second try - I stopped him after he had run a lap in 1:42 and made him restart. Second time around he opened in 1:34, and closed in 1:39 which was more reasonable.

Otherwise we had usual runs today.
Leg 1:Distance3.611Time29:07.60Pace8:03.97
Warm-up, strides.
Split 1:Distance3.050Time24:14.50Pace7:56.89
Split 2:Distance0.062Time0:15.80Pace4:14.84
Split 3:Distance0.062Time0:40.70Pace10:56.45
Split 4:Distance0.062Time0:15.60Pace4:11.61
Split 5:Distance0.375Time3:41.00Pace9:49.33
Leg 2:Distance0.388Time2:07.80Pace5:29.38
Time trial with Benjamin. He ran 2:04.3, I gave him splits through the first lap and then attempted to keep up for the last 400, but succeeded only for the first 200.
Split 1:Distance0.070Time0:29.90Pace7:07.14
Split 2:Distance0.070Time0:30.60Pace7:17.14
Split 3:Distance0.124Time0:32.50Pace4:22.10
Split 4:Distance0.124Time0:34.80Pace4:40.65
Leg 3:Distance6.000Time50:46.60Pace8:27.77
Cool-down with Benjamin.
Leg 4:Distance1.080Time9:08.80Pace8:28.15
Warm-up with Joseph, Jacob, and William.
Leg 5:Distance0.496Time2:39.00Pace5:20.56
Joseph's 800 time trial.
Split 1:Distance0.124Time0:37.70Pace5:04.03
Split 2:Distance0.124Time0:41.00Pace5:30.65
Split 3:Distance0.124Time0:39.70Pace5:20.16
Split 4:Distance0.124Time0:40.60Pace5:27.42
Leg 6:Distance0.496Time2:44.10Pace5:30.85
Jacob's 800 time trial.
Split 1:Distance0.124Time0:37.60Pace5:03.23
Split 2:Distance0.124Time0:42.70Pace5:44.35
Split 3:Distance0.124Time0:43.00Pace5:46.77
Split 4:Distance0.124Time0:40.80Pace5:29.03
Leg 7:Distance0.250Time2:08.50Pace8:34.00
Recovery jog.
Leg 8:Distance0.250Time1:44.20Pace6:56.80
William's botched time trial.
Split 1:Distance0.124Time0:50.30Pace6:45.65
Split 2:Distance0.126Time0:53.90Pace7:07.78
Leg 9:Distance0.496Time3:13.70Pace6:30.52
William's 800 time trial for real.
Leg 10:Distance1.500Time13:16.00Pace8:50.67
Cool-down to the house.

Black Crocs 2 Miles: 14.57
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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