Breaking the Wall

January 25, 2021

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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: 266.81 Year: 266.81
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: 1657.61
Brown Crocs 3 Lifetime Miles: 1438.17
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

Ted was still taking it easy for his foot injury this morning. So I ran alone. Felt sluggish in the warm-up. Ran the first quarter in 2:10 and it felt just right. After 2.4 warm-up ran the progression tempo on the standard 5 mile tempo course. The goal was to start at marathon pace and keep speeding up every mile.

The first quarter did not go so well - 1:29. I figured the body was asleep and pressed harder. Next one in 1:26. I kept the pressure steady and hit 1:24 and 1:23 on the next two. First mile in 5:42. I must have awoken in the last two quarters, I figured, and now needed to ease off a bit on the pressure to keep the pace correct. Did 1:24 - 1:25 - 1:24 - 1:24 for 5:37 on the second mile. Did another quarter in 1:24, then hit some headwind and also used a bit of caution prior to the 180 turn at 2.5. This gave me a 1:26 quarter with 14:09 at the turnaround.

Pressed harder immediately after 180 turn to get into the rhythm quickly. Next two quarters 1:24 and 1:22, 16:55 at 3 miles, third mile in 5:36, still on target for increasing the speed with every mile, even with the 180 turn. Eased off a bit on the pressure, 1:22 was too fast. Next mile consisted of 1:23 - 1:24 - 1:24 - 1:22, total of 5:33. I think the wind played a factor, hurting on the 1:24s and helping on the 1:22.

Now I felt I had the goal in the bag. 5:33 felt hard, but still easy enough to where I could pull off a faster mile even with the uphill. The uphill quarter in 1:24, followed by a 1:23. With half a mile to go I started pressing. Possibly hit some small headwind, next quarter was only 1:23, and it should have been faster. Either that or I was just warn out from the earlier effort. Seeing that, I pressed even harder on the last quarter, and this time watched the pace carefully every 100 meters to make sure I was not slacking. Hit every 100 in 20 seconds, last quarter in 1:20, last mile in 5:30, got my goal, and as a bonus, broke 28:00 with 27:58, and set a new season record for the 2.5 stretch coming back - 13:49.

Cooled down for the total of 10.15 for the run. Ran 0.5 with Julia in the afternoon. She is getting faster on her aerobic runs, we did 5:28 this time.

Ran with Benjamin and Jenny right before dinner. Benjamin is tapering for Heart of Holladay 5 K, so we went only 1.5 and ran it in 13:51 (Benjamin took off on the last quarter and ran 13:42). Afterwards ran another 3.5 with Jacob in the stroller in 24:45 on the trail to Macey's and back. On the way up was going 7:15, on the way back 6:40 with only a slightly higher effort just from getting into the rhythm as the run progressed. The difference between 0.5% grade up and 0.5% down is greatly increased when pushing the stroller.

Untapering for the Heart of Holladay. This will be the most untapered 5 K I have ever run, but this time I have different goals.

Night Sleep Time: 0.00Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 0.00
From Logan on Fri, Jun 08, 2007 at 21:29:57

My last interval was at 75 probably because of the wind a little bit and plus I was a little tired. It has been a while since I've done some serious interval work on a track. I am glad you helped with the definition of what serrifine is.

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