Breaking the Wall

August 04, 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 - 2015-07-28 07:21:50
Workout Totals: Distance13.130Time1:38:40.20Pace7:30.89
Today Stephen set a new mile record at the Orem High Track - 8:29.7. His splits were 2:03, 2:10, 2:08, 2:04 - the balance going to the 9.34 meter tax. This is our new family record for the 4 and under age division. Stephen ran 0.7 faster than he did on the little boy course which was our road record, but the track record of 8:40 belonged to William. I discovered that at the age of 5 and younger the road times on a known out and back course end up being better than the track - I think because a little kid has a hard time knowing how far away he is from the finish on the track, but on the road he knows exactly.

Otherwise we had usual runs, except William did only 1 due to a cold, and Benjamin and I did a 3 mile tempo run at the end of ours in 16:52.3 - splits 5:28 (down the canyon), 5:38 (flatter, rolling), and 5:46 (uphill). I felt great - I originally told Benjamin to pace me at 5:50 but ended up asking him to speed up a few times, and only asked him to slow down on the last hill when he started to smell the barn and instinctively crank it up into the Benjamin gear. I felt like I was turning back the clock and getting younger.

I think the strength came from taking two naps in a row - one on Saturday, and one on Sunday. Now if only I could figure out how to do this more often...
Leg 1:Distance3.718Time29:44.70Pace8:00.02
With Joseph and Jacob. Jenny and Julia did the first 1.5.
Leg 2:Distance1.200Time9:38.00Pace8:01.67
With Benjamin running and Stephen in the stroller to the track.
Leg 3:Distance0.150Time1:36.00Pace10:40.00
Warm-up with Stephen.
Leg 4:Distance1.062Time8:29.70Pace7:59.94
Stephen's time trial.
Leg 5:Distance0.100Time0:52.40Pace8:44.00
Cool-down with Stephen.
Leg 6:Distance0.900Time7:29.90Pace8:19.89
Back to the house with Benjamin running and Stephen in the stroller.
Leg 7:Distance3.000Time23:57.20Pace7:59.07
Warm-up with Benjamin.
Leg 8:Distance3.000Time16:52.30Pace5:37.43
Tempo run.

White Crocs 2 Miles: 13.13
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Jon on Thu, Jul 30, 2015 at 20:06:11 from

Did you see the Runners World article on Amber G? Even included a link to the FRB. Wonder if there will be a surge in registrations.

From Jon on Thu, Jul 30, 2015 at 20:07:59 from

Looks like a small surge. The 3 previous weeks saw 3, 1, and 4 people join per week. Then 25 joined in the past day.

From Sasha Pachev on Thu, Jul 30, 2015 at 20:09:48 from

Yes, we had quite a surge - about 30 or so today. Usually it is about one a day, sometimes not even that.

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