Breaking the Wall

August 14, 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: 88.07 Year: 2386.98
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: 1257.89
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Fast Running Friend Workout - 2017-09-11 08:19:31
Workout Totals: Distance11.040Time1:22:15.00Pace7:27.01
Total of 11. Kids ran mostly on their own because I had a company meeting to get to. Later in the day I did another mile with a fast uphill quarter at the end. I wanted to get another data point.

Lately I have been struggling with upper range speed. Anything faster than 5:35 down the canyon (which I consider to be a flat sea-level equivalent) has been putting me over the edge in an odd way. I am not really breathing that hard, legs are not sore, just cannot move for the life of me. Putting two and two together I figure the problem is in the adrenal glands. What do I do about it? If I run less and/or slower I lose the endurance. If I continue to work on the endurance, I hit a hard barrier and cannot really work on it anyway.

So that leads me to the next option. Some dietary changes and some supplement. Now we are in the area of black magic. I do not eat any junk food, and already consume a good amount of fruit and vegetables with moderate amounts of meat. So it is not as simple as just stop eating things you very well know you should not be, and start eating what you should. We are in the area of fine tuning. Supplement-wise, there are a lot of supplements that promise miracles, and some of them do when applied in the right combination with the diet, training, and rest. In 2003 I stumbled on that combination which allowed me to recover from a slump of 2002 and improve from 2:33:20 (2001) to 2:27:46 on the same course (TOU) in spite of being 2 years older and now taking care of one more kid going from 2 to 3. But now I am in a different type of body that responds to different things, so I need to find something different.
Leg 1:Distance1.000Time8:24.00Pace8:24.00
With Matthew, Jacob, William, and Stephen.
Leg 2:Distance9.040Time1:06:55.70Pace7:24.21
Split 1:Distance4.395Time33:21.70Pace7:35.45
Split 2:Distance0.125Time0:45.10Pace6:00.80
Split 3:Distance4.270Time31:25.30Pace7:21.52
Split 4:Distance0.250Time1:23.60Pace5:34.40
Leg 3:Distance1.000Time6:55.30Pace6:55.30
A short run with a fast uphill quarter at the end to help me understand what is going on.
Split 1:Distance0.750Time5:35.10Pace7:26.80
Split 2:Distance0.250Time1:20.20Pace5:20.80

Red Crocs Miles: 11.04
Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From jeffmc on Sat, Sep 16, 2017 at 10:54:57 from

Maybe you could try using essential oils? Basil, rosemary, and clove have the potential to help with adrenal fatigue.

I do think that you have to be cautious when using essential oils, as people tend to overstate their benefits, and understate the risks. On top of this, the cheaper oils are produced in a fashion that lessens the potential benefit.

However, I have found personally that certain oils will work if used consistently (I use them off and on for hemorrhoids, while my wife and others have found success using oils to help with anxiety), but that I need to try things for myself to determine what works as I can't always trust what people say on the internet.

My wife and I do have basil and rosemary oils, which are the main oils recommended for adrenal fatigue. I am in Utah now. How about I give you some oil in sample bottles and you can try it out to see if it helps?

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