Breaking the Wall

February 22, 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: 81.04 Year: 418.47
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 124.59
Navy Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 1576.28
Neon Crocs 1 Lifetime Miles: 1353.22
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2019-07-11 08:22:22
Workout Totals: Distance12.405Time1:33:24.40Pace7:31.79
Adventurous day today. First we tried a race William against Stephen over 3 miles down the canyon with William starting 1 minute behind. It did not go very well for Stephen as he threw a fit and stopped shortly after the mile - his mile split was 6:33. Jacob and William passed us and I joined them. William - paced by Jacob - ended up with 18:22 (6:07, 6:12, 6:03).

Then it was Joseph's chance for redemption in the uphill 1.25, which he did not take. After the first 0.5 in 3:10 he slowed down to basically a jog, and then shortly after - not even reaching the mile - just quit - again. I told Benjamin to pull me to 2 miles so I could get some kind of a workout, and after the first mile in 6:25 we ran 5:51, which gave us 12:16. I was happy that I found 5:51 on the uphill in myself.

Benjamin earlier ran 3 miles down the canyon in 14:54 (4:56, 5:04, 4:54). I was happy to see that except for the 5:04 - his target was 5:00 pace.

Joseph punished himself for his DNF. First he went to the wrong park forgetting where we had parked. Benjamin and I ran back, did not see him, assumed he just ran home. Then came home, he was not there. We assumed he had come home and was hiding somewhere as he often does after a bad workout. After a couple of hours we still could not find him. So we drove back to the Canyon Glen Park, and found him there. He just sat there and waited - instead of running home. He learned that quitting during a workout and then not following Dad and his brothers results in natural consequences - no breakfast :-)

I recall my coach in Russia telling me about how Vladimir Kutz used to coach - drop the runners off 12.5 miles away from the base, and tell them lunch is in one hour. So today somewhat on accident Joseph got a bit of the Kutz method.
Leg 1:Distance1.000Time7:41.40Pace7:41.40
With Matthew.
Leg 2:Distance0.110Time0:56.60Pace8:34.55
Warm-up with the boys.
Leg 3:Distance3.000Time18:53.00Pace6:17.67
Part with Stephen, part with William and Jacob - down the canyon.
Leg 4:Distance0.625Time6:07.70Pace9:48.32
Back to the start of Joseph's interval.
Leg 5:Distance2.000Time12:16.90Pace6:08.45
Up the canyon - with Benjamin, part with Joseph.
Leg 6:Distance2.670Time23:40.40Pace8:51.99
Cool-down with Benjamin.
Leg 7:Distance3.000Time23:48.40Pace7:56.13
With Benjamin.

Navy Crocs 2 Miles: 12.40
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
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