Breaking the Wall

November 16, 2018

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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 nine children: Benjamin, Jenny, Julia, Joseph, Jacob, William, Stephen, Matthew,  Mary, and Bella.  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: 62.33 Year: 3418.01
Saucony Type A Lifetime Miles: 627.15
Bare Feet Lifetime Miles: 446.12
Nike Double Stroller Lifetime Miles: 120.59
Brown Crocs 1 Lifetime Miles: 1509.03
Brown Crocs 2 Lifetime Miles: 987.95
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance

A.M. Ran with Daniel, Matt, and Mary Ann. Usual deal, except Daniel is now up to 8 miles. And he ran a 17:44 5 K earlier thanks to the increase in mileage. That is his 5 K PR since I've known him.

After Daniel got off the trail I ran some more with Matt and Mary Ann. Then Matt and Mary Ann ran in the direction of BYU, and I stayed on the trail. Due to the extra mile on Daniel's part I miscalculated the turnaround and went about 0.1 further, which is OK. 

Did explosions as usual. Finished with 1:18:53 for 10.1.

Then added 2 miles with Benjamin in 16:38. Did an explosive game with him as well. He was the antelope and I was the cheetah. Once in a while I'd give him a 2-3 second warning to run away from the cheetah. Then I'd sprint until I caught him.

P.M. 1 with Julia in 9:57. Jenny ran 2 miles with Sarah in 19:26.

Brooks T4 Racing Flat Miles: 12.10
Night Sleep Time: 7.50Nap Time: 0.00Total Sleep Time: 7.50
From kelsey on Tue, Feb 10, 2009 at 16:41:13

Hey Sasha- I was watching Oprah today and they were talking about a pill that's coming out to increase the mitochondria in people so they can lose weight. The doctor on the show didn't recommend the pill because it is in it's early stages and has so far only shown improvements in mice, not humans. But he explained the science behind it and it was pretty interesting and I thought you would like it. So I found this article on the importance of mitochondria for athletes and how they can improve their amounts (specifically focusing on cyclists). Basically I think it says you have to push past your VO2 max level during some workouts in order to increase mitochondria, and increasing them increases your endurance and ability to hold a faster pace for a longer time.

I guess it's kind of the same idea behind most training programs- you push harder you get better- but I thought the science was neat and thought you might agree!

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