Breaking the Wall

July 09, 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: 51.55 Year: 2011.51
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: 881.43
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran 15.1 in 1:58:58. First 10.1 with Ted. Temperature was 15 F. Lots of snow on the trail still, slippery, had a hard time with 8:00 pace. There was one dry stretch where we did a couple of pickups at 5 K race pace or so, around 5:00/mile if Ted's GPS was right. It did feel like it could have been right.

P.M. 2 with Benjamin in 18:57, Jenny joined for the first 1.5 in 14:48. 3.75 cross-country skiing on the Provo River trail out and back on a 0.625 section in 28:46, 7:40.27 avg, which gives a 23:50 5 K. This would be a 5 K PR for cross-country skiing. The entire time I was in a running-like gait when you move both the arms and the legs as if you were running (as opposed to pushing off with both arms and gliding, or pushing off with both arms and only one leg at a time). I had to because the skis did not glide very well. I wonder what I could do on racing skis that glide optimally and a well-groomed track. Would anybody familiar with cross-country skiing  venture a guess? The effort felt like 6:30 pace running, but if I put any more, it did not seem like I was going any faster. Afterwards ran a mile with Julia in 11:29.

Night Sleep Time: 0.13Nap Time: 0.02Total Sleep Time: 0.15
From Lybi on Thu, Jan 24, 2008 at 20:25:31

Geez Sasha, now because of your lovely little comment on my blog I can't access that entry. My web filter has blocked it out under the heading of "anger/violence/racism". Lol.

Great zhe job today. I am absolutely confounded at the zhe idea of running more zhe miles in a day than degrees over zero! You are going to be in zhe heaven when you come down for Relay del Sol.

From sarah on Thu, Jan 24, 2008 at 23:45:18 never cease to completely crack me up..what would we do without your wonderful humor. Sasha thinks you should start learning Russian....(Big's like being invited to join an exclusive country club..Russians are language snobs..especially Muscovites!)

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