Breaking the Wall

August 23, 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: 173.50 Year: 2475.51
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs Lifetime Miles: 2133.34
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1360.04
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2015-03-31 08:44:03
Workout Totals: Distance11.945Time1:36:59.90Pace8:07.22
Benjamin did 800 meter time trial at Orem High track today in 2:06.7 - a new PR by 1.5 seconds. The splits were 31.3, 31.8, 32.8, and 30.8. Very even and a strong kick. He said he felt the pace was not as strenuous as before but he had a hard time overriding the governor to go faster.

This was an interesting result from his training in the last couple of weeks, not what I was expecting. His staple workout was 4x400 targeting 60 seconds with long rest. So I was expecting that he would open in 61 and then hang on feeling miserable and run something like 64-65. Instead he pretty much even split it with 63.1, 63.6 and the last 200 being the fastest 200 of the whole thing. His post run recovery was also good, it was perhaps the least taxing 800 he has done in the last year. There was one twist to his training that might have been the cause of this. He did not just do short speed, but also tempo runs at the end of a long run on Saturdays. Now that I am remembering, I had very similar results when I trained like this - the 800 pace was steady.

Now the problem we need to solve is to learn how to go faster in the first lap. I am thinking 500-600 intervals with the mandate to run the first 400 in 60.

Joseph's back was sore from yesterday's hula hooping so I told him to cut it to just 3 miles with Jacob today. Everybody else ran their usual distances.
Leg 1:Distance3.000Time23:11.80Pace7:43.93
With Joseph and Jacob
Leg 2:Distance1.611Time13:44.60Pace8:31.86
Warm-up with Benjamin with 2x100 strides
Split 1:Distance1.050Time8:34.70Pace8:10.19
Split 2:Distance0.062Time0:16.30Pace4:22.90
Split 3:Distance0.062Time0:56.40Pace15:09.68
Split 4:Distance0.062Time0:15.90Pace4:16.45
Split 5:Distance0.375Time3:41.30Pace9:50.13
Leg 3:Distance0.334Time2:06.70Pace6:19.34
Benjamin's 800 time trial. I ran from 200 to 400 with him, and the rest of it on diagonals to give him splits.
Split 1:Distance0.070Time0:31.30Pace7:27.14
Split 2:Distance0.124Time0:31.80Pace4:16.45
Split 3:Distance0.070Time0:32.80Pace7:48.57
Split 4:Distance0.070Time0:30.80Pace7:20.00
Leg 4:Distance1.000Time8:53.70Pace8:53.70
Cool-down to the house.
Leg 5:Distance6.000Time49:03.10Pace8:10.52
More miles with Benjamin.

White Crocs 1 Miles: 11.95
Night Sleep Time: 7.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.00
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